Did you miss our How to Eat Healthy at Home webinar with Jenny Craig's Certified Nutritionist, Monica Ropar?
Don't worry — you can watch the recording right here! Check out Monica's tips on how to eat healthy and stay healthy during this time at home.
Welcome and Introduction
Hello and thank you for joining! Welcome to our webinar “How to Stay Healthy at Home!” I’m Monica Ropar, Jenny Craig’s Certified Nutritionist. Today we’re going to be covering tips on how to eat healthily and stay on track while you’re at home.
We polled you on social to round up the top questions you wanted to be answered! Based on those questions here is what we are going to cover today:
- 5 tips for staying healthy at home
- Stress eating
- How to create a healthy routine
- The importance of support
- A plan to keep you on track
We’ll finish by covering some of the questions you asked us on social. If you have questions during the presentation, ask them in the Q&A chat section and we’ll try to respond to as many as possible. Okay, let’s get started!
How to Eat Healthy at Home
Of those we polled on Instagram, 63% of you said your dietary habits have gotten worse since staying at home. It can be totally normal to reach for comfort foods in stressful situations, so don’t worry if you feel like you’ve gotten off track – we’ll give you some tips today to start eating healthier and feel your best!
Here are 5 of my best tips to eat healthy right now and why each is important:
Tip #1 – Load up on veggies
When you include veggies in your diet you will be getting vitamins, minerals, and nutrients that your body absolutely needs to function properly – these are known as micronutrients. It’s not all just about macronutrients – which are the proteins, carbs, and fats that give you the fuel and energy you need to function every day. Micronutrients put the finishing touches on making sure everything is working properly, helping to fight disease, boost your immune system and support your bone and cell health.
Here are some of my favorite vegetables that are packed with vitamins and are easy to include at mealtimes:
- Spinach or other leafy greens
- Brussels sprouts
Some easy ways to add more veggies to your diet:
- Add spinach, leafy greens or your favorite veggies to your morning smoothie
- Add veggies to an egg scramble for an easy breakfast or lunch idea
- Bake a tray of a variety of vegetables that complement your meals (Brussels, asparagus, carrots)
- Do a swap out like regular rice for cauliflower rice or zucchini noodles for pasta noodles
- Experiment with new varieties, seasonings and spices
Tip #2 – Stay hydrated & avoid alcohol
Hydration is often overlooked, but because the human body is primarily made up of water (around 60%!), it’s crucial that we make sure to stay properly hydrated! The best way to stay hydrated is to sip on water throughout the day. You’ll want to aim to get at least 8 cups of water per day. Most people need more! One of the best habits to get into is carrying a water bottle with you, everywhere. Just like when you think about your wallet or cell phone — add your water bottle to the mix!
If plain old water is getting boring spruce it up with some fresh fruits or herbs. A quick combo is with lemon or another citrus. My personal favorite is cucumber!
Tip #3 – Keep an eye on your portion sizes
There’s a common misconception about weight loss: You have to be extremely restrictive. The common thought out there is that you must give something up to be healthy when really it should be about what you can add to your life to be healthy! I firmly believe this is why it is so hard to build consistent habits.
But no fear, I’ve got a tool for you — portion control. Portion control is not about giving anything up, rather consuming foods, even your favorite treats in the right portions to keep you on track with your goals. A quick and helpful way to know what portion size might be best for you is to use your hands! Using your hands to determine portion sizes works great at home or when you are out and about.
- Proteins at meals times should be about the size of your palm
- Make a fist and you’ve got the right amount of veggies, but of course, feel free to add more!
- One cupped hand is great for your starches/carbs
- Your thumb is a good indicator of the amount of fat to add to your plate
Tip #4 – Keep healthy non-perishable foods on hand
A lot of you asked about which non-perishable foods are the healthiest. Good news: there are lots of great options to choose from! Keeping frozen vegetables and fruit on hand is a great way to make sure you always have healthy foods on hand. All these items don’t have a long ingredients list – healthy foods can come in packages, sometimes. Here are my top picks.
- Frozen fruits and veggies
- Canned items — tuna, beans, veggies, etc.
- Whole wheat pasta (mix with your frozen veggies for a complete meal!)
- Oats – perfect for breakfast
- Jenny Craig meals and snacks are great to have on hand as well
We have a great blog post that goes into more depth on this topic, so if you’re interested in learning more, visit our Healthy Habits Blog on JennyCraig.com: 7 Healthy Non-Perishable Foods
Tip #5 – Balance is key
Remember there is no such thing as being “perfect!” Building healthy habits that you can practice most of the time is what will help you achieve your goals. This is balance!
There will be days that don’t go exactly to plan (we all have them!). Maybe you have one too many cookies or didn’t get a chance to work out as planned – that is OK. Don’t beat yourself up. The important part is that you get back to your healthy habits. One day or meal isn’t going to undo all of your hard work. Most days focus on nutritious foods like veggies, fruits, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats. Also, getting in some movement and taking time for self-care are all part of this process.
How to Handle Stress Eating/Eating Out of Boredom
It’s quite common to reach for comforting foods when you’re feeling stressed or bored at home. But if you’re eating when you’re not truly hungry, well it can lead to weight gain. Here are some ways you can check in with yourself before you reach for a snack or a meal:
- Drink some water — often you can mistake hunger for thirst. Try drinking a full glass of water before reaching for seconds or another snack.
- Wait 20 minutes — give yourself some time to see how hungry you actually are! You might be surprised to find out you weren’t actually hungry!
- Occupy yourself with something else — read a book, stand up, do some stretches, grab that glass of water, putting your focus on something else could help
- If you’re still hungry — once you’ve tried all these things and still feel hungry, it’s time to eat and there is no shame in that! Reach for a healthy snack with some fiber and protein (like an apple with a little bit of nut butter).
How to Get Into a Healthy Routine
If you’re having trouble making healthy choices, start small. I find that having a routine can help.
Start your day off with something you enjoy — maybe that’s 10 minutes to yourself to savor a cup of coffee, a few minutes to journal, or a 15-minute workout.
Then start your day with a healthy breakfast. By starting your day off with a routine and taking care of yourself, you might find it easier to make healthier choices throughout the day.
And if you do get off track – don’t beat yourself up! Eat healthy at your next meal! Having a positive mindset can really help during this time at home.
Find Your Support System
Losing weight and changing your eating habits on your own can be difficult — we get that! This is why having someone that will support you is so crucial. A friend, a family member, a partner or your Jenny Craig coach can help you stay on track/hold you accountable. Even if they aren’t in your household – if you have a friend that wants to eat healthy with you, you can check in with each other virtually. Give them a call once a day to check-in or plan your meals together.
If you’re looking for a little more guidance, Jenny Craig’s weight loss coaches are excellent resources. They can provide you with tips and tricks to stay on track and help motivate you along your journey.
Everyone needs some support and a cheerleader!
A Plan to Keep You On Track
I hope these tips have been helpful! A lot of you voiced interest in a plan that will help keep you on track during this time.
While there are a lot of different options out there, make sure to find one that fits your lifestyle, is sustainable or something you know you can stick to and balanced! Although fad or trending diets can be alluring with certain claims that may offer quick and dramatic weight loss, they’re usually not healthy, sustainable, or they require you to avoid something. If you find that you might do better with some guidance and a specific meal plan? Check out our new healthy meal plans starting at $12.99 at JennyCraig.com/shop-plans.
We have some questions that people asked on social – so I’m going to answer those now. If you have any questions make sure to type them into the Q&A chat section.
Question: I’m having a hard time staying consistent. I’m stressed. I’m only drinking 16oz of water a day.
Answer: Stress definitely gets a hold of us and we don’t want getting healthier to add to that. When developing healthy habits start small, so you mentioned water — try making this your ONE focus for developing healthy habits, everything else can come next. So if possible carry a water bottle with you at all times or at least have one handy. If you work at a computer/desk put it right in eyesight so it reminds you. One thing I actually did for water reminders was set alarms on my phone, it was a little annoying at first I’m not going to lie, but it did help me realize how often I was NOT drinking water and correct that. Remember the best way to hydrate is to sip on water all day long.
Question: What fresh veggies can I put in the freezer to eat later?
Answer: You can either flash freeze or blanch a variety of fresh veggies to help retain their nutrients. Zucchini, carrots, onions, brussels sprouts, butternut squash, green beans are great to freeze. More delicate items like leafy greens, cabbage, celery are much harder to freeze but can still be done! I have a friend who throws the whole bag of greens into the freezer to make smoothies with.
Some tips on how to freeze fresh veggies:
- Wash vegetables
- Blanch them (boil in water and then dip in ice water quickly) this will help cook them a bit.
- Lay them out on a cookie sheet and freeze (this will help them not stick to each other in the freezer!)
- Once frozen, pop them into a freezer bag.
- Reheat/cook when you’re ready to eat them!
Question: I am new to the plan. Can I have almond milk in my coffee?
Answer: Of course! The only thing I would caution is when using flavored or heavily sweetened flavors. If you have your Getting Started Guide, you can check for the portion size there. Or it’s about 1 cup for 1 serving, which you may not even need/want that amount in your coffee.
Question: How do I stay committed when the weight loss is so slow (1-2 lbs. per week)? It feels so slow!
Answer: Sustainable weight loss is a slower process, while we say generally expected results are 1-2 lbs per week, a ½ lb per week is wonderful. In many ways that means you are doing it right. You are allowing your body to adjust properly, not under fueling, developing healthy habits, and most importantly you are making progress! Consistency is more important than anything when it comes to reaching your goals, so while it might seem slow, it's very steady!
Well, that about sums it up for today. I enjoyed my time with you and I hope you found this helpful! If we weren’t able to get to your question during the webinar, we’ll reach out to you by email. If you have additional questions, we’d love to hear from you! Reach out to us on social media or contact us on JennyCraig.com.
For more nutrition and health tips check out our Healthy Habits Blog on JennyCraig.com/blog and be sure to follow us on social media! Stay healthy!
Edited by Elisa - Jenny Craig