Nutrition Made Simple Podcast Episode 7: Healthy Steps Nutrition Framework: Lifestyle

Today, Nicole Aucoin and Ashley Osterman discuss the last pillar of the Healthy Steps Nutrition Framework: Lifestyle.

Just a reminder, here are all the pillars of the Healthy Steps Nutrition Framework: nutrition, support, stress/mindset, sleep, exercise, and finally, lifestyle.

Did you miss one of the discussions about a pillar, go back and listen to the past five episodes where we discuss how these pillars work together.

Now, let’s talk about lifestyle.

Daily actions create healthy habits that leads you to a healthy lifestyle and becoming the healthiest version of yourself.

Podcast Episodes on the additional pillars of the Healthy Steps Nutrition Framework

Episode Transcript:

Nicole Aucoin (00:04):
Welcome back to the Nutrition Made Simple podcast. At Healthy Steps Nutrition, we believe something as fundamental as nutrition shouldn’t be complicated, which is why we focus on a simple habit-based approach when working with clients. We’ve helped over 30,000 people around the world take control of their health through our simple habit-based approach. I’m your host, Nicole Aucoin, a registered dietician and founder of Healthy Steps Nutrition, CrossFit HSN, and HSN Mentoring. I’m also the author of The Healthy Kids Cookbook, 100% kid-approved recipes for the whole family. You can get it on Amazon.

Nicole Aucoin (00:44):
In this brand new podcast, we will be teaching you how to take one step at a time to become the healthiest version of yourself. Today, Ashley, our Director of Nutrition Education at Healthy Steps Nutrition and I are discussing the last pillar of the healthy steps nutrition framework, lifestyle. Just a reminder, here are all the pillars of the healthy steps nutrition framework, nutrition, support, stress management, and mindset, sleep, exercise, and finally lifestyle.

Nicole Aucoin (01:16):
When working with one of the 2,500 coaches that we’ve trained at Healthy Steps Nutrition, you aren’t just learning what to eat. You are learning about how all of these pillars work together to help you become the healthiest version of yourself. Did you miss one of these discussions about a pillar? Go back and listen to the past five episodes where we teach about one pillar in each episode. Now let’s talk about lifestyle. Daily actions create healthy habits, which lead to a healthy lifestyle. And of course, becoming the healthiest version of yourself. In this episode, Ashley and I discuss how to create a healthy lifestyle, how we define a healthy lifestyle and what you can do today to set yourself up for long-term success. We will get to this episode just after this message.

Nicole Aucoin (02:12):
Our mission at Healthy Steps Nutrition is to empower 4,000 people, 1000 people per week, to ditch the all or nothing mindset and take one step to become the healthiest version of themselves. Do you know someone who’s looking to lose weight? We would love for you to share our podcast with them. You never know who could use some words of encouragement. Take a screenshot, post it on social media and tag Healthy Steps Nutrition so your friends can find this awesome free help. Don’t forget to subscribe to this podcast so you don’t miss an episode. All right, let’s get to lifestyle. Ashley, welcome back to the Nutrition Made Simple podcast.

Ashley Osterman (02:54):
Thanks, Nicole. Always a pleasure to be on.

Nicole Aucoin (02:57):
So today we are talking about the last piece of the healthy steps nutrition framework, lifestyle.

Ashley Osterman (03:03):
Lifestyle. I mean, I’m sure you’ve heard this term before. Your lifestyle, the lifestyle you live. But what exactly are we referring to when we talk about lifestyle?

Nicole Aucoin (03:14):
It’s such a buzz word, right? So, really at the simplest form, we’re talking about the way in which you live. So what becomes something that’s a conscious effort to an unconscious effort? What becomes just second nature instead of, oh, I have to think about every single little thing. Right?

Ashley Osterman (03:36):
Right. You think about lifestyle, there are so many factors that can be integrated into your lifestyle or the way that you unconsciously live and do things. It can be a combination of the people that you surround yourself with. It can be a combination of where you live. Lifestyle is also very heavily embraced in religion, as well as culture.

Nicole Aucoin (03:59):
Absolutely. There are so many different factors that go into a lifestyle, but what we’ve realized training and helping thousands of nutrition clients is if you don’t really build a healthy lifestyle, it is really hard to prevent going back into old habits.

Ashley Osterman (04:17):
Yeah. And we see on the nutrition research side, how important a healthy lifestyle is. According to the World Health Organization, 60% of related factors to individual health and quality of life are correlated with your lifestyle. But unfortunately, millions of people follow an unhealthy lifestyle.

Nicole Aucoin (04:43):
When I think about why I started Healthy Steps Nutrition, it really goes into preventing chronic disease and helping to empower people to live their healthiest life. And your lifestyle directly is related to the prevention of chronic disease. In fact, the World Health Organization also talks about three main modifiable factors that you can control. And one of those is exercise, which we talked about the last episode. Tobacco use, which if you’re smoking, it’s going to increase your risk for chronic disease. And then an unhealthy diet. And exercise and an unhealthy diet, in my opinion, go really hand in hand. Like exercise, you’re moving, you’re really setting yourself up for success long-term.

Ashley Osterman (05:29):
Yeah, absolutely. And we know that with one or the other, not supporting each other, we’re not going to be able to reach our goals in the time that we would have if we used all of the holistic approach. You know, unfortunately with people who follow an unhealthy lifestyle, we see a higher prevalence of the chronic disease, metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular disease, type two diabetes, and other types of issues that could cause illness, disability, or even death. So we really need to think about the relationship between lifestyle and health. And you need to consider if your lifestyle is positively impacting your health and wellness or negatively impacting your health and wellness.

Nicole Aucoin (06:15):
When I think about diet culture and this all or nothing mentality, right? So many people go on diets, change everything, they go right back to old bad habits. And when we shift from, I’m not following a super restrictive diet, I’m really changing my lifestyle, I’m setting up healthy habits that can last a lifetime, that is where we set ourselves up for success.

Ashley Osterman (06:37):
Yes, absolutely. And I think when we’re looking at our lifestyle and making those changes to foster a more healthy lifestyle, we need to look at just one thing at a time.

Nicole Aucoin (06:49):
For sure. And Ashley, you kind of mentioned this, but it also goes with all of the other things that we’ve talked about with the framework, right? Like your lifestyle, are you sleeping? Are you eating out a lot? Are you going out and partying? What type of lifestyle do you live? And just as important, who are you surrounding yourself with? You know, one of the things I love about CrossFit is the community and all of those people are there to become the best versions of themselves. And they’re striving for that. And if you can surround yourself with people that are investing in their health and making that a priority, it’s going to rub off on you if you’re not there yet.

Ashley Osterman (07:27):
Yes. And most of the time we don’t even realize it. Whether it’s rubbing off in a positive light or a negative light, we don’t realize it. But the research shows that we are affected by the people who we surround ourselves, the community that we surround ourselves with. It affects our body composition, our habits, whether good or bad. It affects what we eat, if we’re moving, how we move. So there’s so many things that the lifestyle can positively or negatively affect. And like you were talking about earlier Nicole, it really becomes second nature because you’ve lived, you’re immersed in this lifestyle for so long.

Ashley Osterman (08:05):
So if it’s a healthy lifestyle, that’s great. It’s not stressful to have to put health and wellness at the forefront of our brains because we’re already doing a lot of those healthy habits, living a healthy lifestyle. But on the opposite end, if it is negative, we need to make an assessment and start making changes for the better. Because again, 60% of related factors to your health and quality of life are correlated with your lifestyle.

Nicole Aucoin (08:33):
It becomes second nature when you really build healthy habits, instead of changing everything where it’s really overwhelming. And if it becomes second nature, you don’t even have to think about it. You just naturally do it. And I’ll give you an example. Ashley, this happened to both of us. A few months ago, we did a day in the life of what we eat.

Ashley Osterman (08:54):
On our Social media.

Nicole Aucoin (08:55):
On our social media. We did a day in the life on our social media.

Ashley Osterman (08:57):
We did that trend.

Nicole Aucoin (08:58):
And we both put all of our food in my fitness pal just to see exactly how much protein, how many carbs, how much fat are we eating throughout the day?

Ashley Osterman (09:07):
How many calories.

Nicole Aucoin (09:08):
Exactly. Everything. I do not track my food.

Ashley Osterman (09:10):
Me neither.

Nicole Aucoin (09:11):
I don’t have 99% of my clients track their food because I think it’s really overwhelming.

Ashley Osterman (09:15):
Me either.

Nicole Aucoin (09:16):
But when we did it, we realized, okay, we’re right where we need to be and. It’s perfectly balanced. But why is that? It’ss because it came second nature because we were so used to, okay, what does my plate look like? Okay, I’ve got half my plate vegetables, a quarter protein, quarter starch. Looks good. I add in some healthy fat, we’ve got balanced snacks throughout the day. We’re fueling our bodies around our workouts and what happens? We don’t have to think about it. It’s just, okay, these are the ingredients I got in my fridge. Now I’m going to make them into a meal. And there you go, it’s balanced.

Ashley Osterman (09:47):
It’s because it’s ingrained in our lifestyle and how we did that was by consistently achieving those healthy habits. And to be honest, this is what I strive for with so many of my nutrition clients, to make healthy eating just a way of life. So it’s, you don’t have to think about it. And it really comes from, at the foundation, keeping it simple and not overwhelming yourself, trying to change too much at one time.

Nicole Aucoin (10:12):
Absolutely.

Ashley Osterman (10:13):
So many people and I used to travel around to different CrossFit gyms and one of the questions, I would do nutrition seminars, they’re like, okay, all of this is great, but when’s my cheat day? But what does a cheat day really mean?

Ashley Osterman (10:24):
I feel like it just throws out all of the healthy habits that you’ve created to foster this binge eating behavior. When in reality, if you want a treat, have it, and let’s move on. Because at the end of the day, you have to foster a positive relationship with food if you want to create a healthy lifestyle. Because if you’re constantly saying I can’t, I can’t, I can’t, subconsciously you’re thinking, how do I get that?

Nicole Aucoin (10:46):
Yeah. And treats can be a part of a healthy, balanced lifestyle. I mean, case in fact, in my day of life, I had chocolate as one of my snacks. It can be a part of a balanced, healthy lifestyle. But why do we have to have a cheat day? Why does it have to be a negative connotation for a day to just go off the rails? Why can’t I just have balance and moderation and incorporate treats when I want them into a healthy lifestyle?

Ashley Osterman (11:11):
It’s so important. This is really where it takes education with a nutrition coach, right? Because you have to change so many different thought processes for people because diet culture is so big. And so many people have tried seven to 10 diets. The average person has tried seven to 10 diets before seeking a professional. So you’ve tried all of these different things that haven’t worked. Most people will regain more weight than they lost when they go on a diet because they go right back to those old habits. And it really comes down to fostering a healthy, positive relationship with food and changing your lifestyle. And Nicole, it takes time. It takes time, it takes commitment. And it really takes that accountability and that support, whether you have it with a nutrition coach or with a friend or a family member, it does take that time.

Ashley Osterman (12:01):
Think about it, we’ve been immersed in diet culture for probably most of our lives. And we have these food rules set in our heads about what diet needs to be, what healthy eating, healthy living needs to be. And it takes time to undo those and foster a positive and healthy relationship with food. But it is doable.

Nicole Aucoin (12:18):
Absolutely. You just have to slow down.

Ashley Osterman (12:20):
Yes.

Nicole Aucoin (12:21):
Just slow down, focus on one thing at a time. And I think a really important piece of the puzzle that we don’t talk about enough, we always talk about goals and goal setting, but you have to dig deep and figure out the why behind your goal. And once you figure out why, fostering this healthy relationship and creating this healthy lifestyle becomes so much easier because you understand why you are doing what you are doing.

Ashley Osterman (12:46):
Yeah. And keeping that why in the forefront of your mind to help you stay motivated and on track is so important too. There’s going to be bumps in the road. Progress is never a straight line. Things happen. We’re humans. This is life. But when those things happen, don’t let it discourage you. Don’t make it have you go crazy off track or off the wall, as one of my clients says. You don’t need to have those cheat days. You just need to bring back the why and keep moving forward.

Nicole Aucoin (13:14):
And part of that is the support. All of these things are so interconnected, right? Yes, we’ve all gone off the wagon, of course. But how quickly does it take you to get back on? And when you have the support, when you have a nutrition coach that you’re checking in with, it’s going to be so much quicker than you get back on the wagon when you do fall off and really fostering that positive relationship with food. And if you are working with someone or you have tried to diet in the past where you’re constantly thinking to yourself, I can’t have that, I can’t have that, I can’t have that. I would challenge you to start focusing more on what can I have? And let’s just have way more of that stuff that I can. And then if I want some other things, okay, fine. Have them and then move on. But you have to foster that positive relationship to really build a healthy lifestyle.

Ashley Osterman (14:00):
Yes, absolutely. So I challenge you guys who are listening, take a moment, do a self-assessment, lifestyle is the last piece of our holistic focus for the HSN framework. But I think it’s so important because it really integrates all the areas of your success with your goals. Take a moment. Think about your lifestyle. Are you positively enforcing what you want to accomplish with your health and wellness? Or are you pulling yourself backward unknowingly, because it’s so ingrained in your lifestyle and your habits.

Ashley Osterman (14:31):
Take a moment and think about it. If you notice there are a few areas that you can improve on, pick just one. Start slow, one step at a time, improve that one area, do it consistently. Once you have that down and it’s like second nature, then move to the next step. Remember making lifelong changes is a marathon, not a sprint.

Nicole Aucoin (14:55):
Man Ashley, you just nailed it wrapping up this podcast episode. Next episode, we are going to be talking about five habits of highly effective nutrition clients. And this is so much fun because we’ve helped over 35,000 people around the world. So taking all of those people, what are the most successful nutrition clients doing? All right until next week.

Nicole Aucoin (15:17):
At Healthy Steps Nutrition, we say, you don’t need a restrictive diet, you need a healthy lifestyle. So many people come to us thinking they need a meal plan or a piece of paper to be successful. The truth is you can find those meal plans online. You don’t need a meal plan. You need a plan that’s customized to you that’s going to work for you. You keep hearing me saying our mission this month is to reach 4,000 people in January 1000 people per week through this podcast to help them ditch the all or nothing mindset. But what does that really mean?

Nicole Aucoin (15:58):
Well, we live in a microwave society. We think that if we change everything today, we’re going to see results tomorrow. We want the results yesterday. But the truth is a healthy lifestyle isn’t a quick fix and it’s definitely not flashy. In fact, it’s the opposite and it takes a lot of work. That’s probably the reason why two-thirds of people who go on a restrictive diet will regain the weight back.

Nicole Aucoin (16:24):
It’s because of this all or nothing mentality. It’s time to flip the switch. It’s time to keep it simple. Hence this Nutrition Made Simple podcast. In order to see lasting results, you need to slow down. Focus on one thing at a time. Sometimes it can be tough to know what that one thing should be. And that’s where a coach comes in. Nutrition coaches are there to guide you every step of the way and keep you accountable so that you can create a healthy lifestyle and become the healthiest version of yourself. Remember daily actions create healthy habits, which leads to a healthy lifestyle and you become the healthiest version of yourself. Well, this wraps up our series on the healthy steps nutrition framework. You might be asking, what’s next?

Nicole Aucoin (17:16):
Well, tomorrow we start our weekly podcast episodes. So you can expect every Thursday you will find a podcast to help you become one step closer to the healthiest version of yourself. Tomorrow, we will be talking about five habits of highly successful nutrition clients. Remember we’ve helped over 30,000 clients around the world. We’ve identified five habits of highly successful clients. And I can’t wait for you to hear them. Before we go, are you loving this podcast? Remember, our mission is to empower those 4,000 people in January to ditch that all or nothing mindset and take control of their health and we need your help to do so. So please share this podcast and don’t forget to subscribe and leave a review. Thanks. See you tomorrow.

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