Imagine living a life filled with deliciously decadent, healthy meals and a nightly champagne toast? Imagine loving your body and eating for your health – as opposed to a number on the scale? It’s completely possible. Here, lifestyle and wellness coach Cara Alwill Leyba shows you how.
As a woman who has struggled with her weight for most of her life, I know what it’s like to feel frustrated with fad diets. I’ve done them all: the Atkins diet, the 5:2 diet, Weight Watchers; I’ve even tried eating like a French woman and let me tell you, I just end up hoarding blocks of cheese and drinking a bottle of wine for dinner. Portion control was never my thing, until I discovered The Champagne Diet.
It wasn’t until a good friend suggested I ditch the idea of ‘diets’ and start eating healthy, nutritious foods (mostly organic and GMO-free). She recommended a mainly vegetarian diet filled with fresh vegetables, fruits, legumes, whole grains and the occasional piece of fish. Processed, chemical-laden foods were a no-no. When I asked her if alcohol was on the menu she replied: ‘Of course, just drink champagne!’ Champagne has approximately 90 calories per glass, making it one of the lights drinks available. I was in, and ‘The Champagne Diet’ was born.
Along with my healthy new food regime and nightly glass of champagne, I chose something to toast to at night; specifically something I was proud of. Whether it was an accomplishment at work, or the fact that I made it to the gym that day, I raised my glass and began celebrating myself on a regular basis.
I ended up losing about 25 pounds on ‘The Champagne Diet’ but it went much further than weight loss for me. I learned how to respect my body and eat for my health. I also learned how to start celebrating myself; imperfections included. I began to appreciate all the great qualities about myself and stop obsessing over the ‘flaws.’ I gained an unstoppable confidence.
My experiences led me to become a life and wellness coach so that I could learn more about health and help other women change their lives. I truly believe all women deserve to feel amazing and stop beating themselves up over their weight, and it has become my mission to teach them how to do it.
So how can you start living The Champagne Diet? Here are my top tips:
1. Stop depriving yourself.
The biggest mistake we make with weight loss is the idea that we ‘can’t’ have something. If you want a piece of cake, eat it. When food is no longer a novelty, it becomes less of an obsession.
2. Love yourself now
Here’s the biggest problem with diets: they don’t consider our emotions. When we embark on a weight loss journey, we’re usually at rock bottom. You’ve got to be in a positive place if you want to be successful in changing your eating habits and your relationship with your body – for good.
3. If you can’t pronounce the ingredients, don’t eat them.
Just because something is low calorie or fat free doesn’t mean it’s healthy. Try to eat whole, nutritious foods that don’t come in a pre-packaged box.
4. Make your workouts enjoyable.
Don’t drag yourself to overly challenging classes at the gym. They’ll only end up frustrating you. Choose activities that get you moving and are fun. Think dance classes, hikes, or tennis lessons.
5. Look your best.
If you look good, you feel good. Don’t wait to buy new clothes until you lose weight. Buy flattering clothes that fit the body you have now – not the body you want next summer.
6. Embrace your femininity.
When we’re overweight or not feeling good about ourselves, all of our self-care tends to go out the window. Keep your glam vibration high by getting your weekly manicures, spritzing on your favourite perfume, and wearing makeup.
7. Stick to a mainly vegetarian diet.
Research shows that the healthiest people follow a mainly plant-based diet. In fact, a plant-based diet has been shown to not only prevent disease, but also reverse it. You don’t have to go 100% vegan, but try to limit your intake of meat, especially processed meat filled with hormones and antibiotics.
8. Ditch the ‘F’ word.
Negative self-talk has more of an impact than you may realize. Calling yourself fat is a surefire way to stay miserable and unmotivated. Instead, try to compliment yourself once a day. The positive affirmations will build confidence and in turn help you stay on track.
9. Glamorize your meals.
Make eating a glamorous experience by using your best china and eating only high-quality, nutritious foods. For example, instead of a burger and a beer, dine on a piece of salmon and pair it with a glass of champagne.
10. Raise your glass.
Choose champagne as your drink of choice. Not only is it low in calories, there are a myriad of health benefits associated with drinking champagne (in moderation) including helping to prevent memory loss, boosting your heart health, and helping to protect the brain against disease. Cheers!
For more information visit The Champagne Diet website.