If you’ve been delaying your resolution to scrap those mid-week pizzas and chocolate bars, this might just be the time you’ve been waiting for. Junk Free June is the perfect opportunity for you to ditch those guilty pleasures and switch lanes to a healthier lifestyle.
Organised by the Junction Works, it’s an annual campaign that raises money for the Living Skills and Respite House for people with a disability. So you can actually donate money to a good cause as well as save yourself some cash by giving up all that junk. Did you know you could save about $300 every month just by saying no to that afternoon takeaway coffee and chocolate bar? Ouch!
Well, they say it takes 21 days to change a habit so let’s give it an extra week and see if you can make it happen in a month. If giving up junk for 30 days is already making you feel grumpy, you can start small and make that one healthy change you’ve always wanted to. Here are a few simple yet effective ideas to get you started:
Detox your fridge: Let’s face it, if you wake up for a midnight snack and see a Nutella jar staring at you, the odds of you going for an apple are abysmally low. It would be best you eliminate all temptation from your fridge and pantry and clear out the junk food you’ve been collecting all this while. Give the packaged stuff to a neighbour or your local food bank. In fact, next time you go grocery shopping, divvy up your cart and promise yourself to only fill it with nutritious stuff. Be firm and walk past that packet of chips. You don’t need them.
Start cooking: Now that you’ve cleaned your fridge, it’s time to awaken your inner masterchef and start cooking those healthy dishes. Packing your own food instead of buying lunch every day is not just a healthier alternative, it can also save you roughly $60 a week. It’s tough to plan meals everyday, so we’d suggest you draw yourself a calendar right at the beginning and jot down options for a balanced diet. Do this on the weekend while your excitement and motivation is still high and you will thank yourself later.
Visit a farmers’ market: No matter how fresh the fruits and veggies from your supermarket are, they can’t match the quality of produce grown by Aussie farmers. Plan a trip to the local farmers’ market and buy everything you’re going to need to stick to your meal plan. Buying in bulk will also turn out to be cost effective and cut down on excess (junk) packaging.
Replace junk with healthier alternatives: Giving up junk doesn’t mean you have to stop snacking. It just means you have to control your quantities and get creative in the kitchen to look for healthier replacements. For instance, go for honey instead of sugar, or avocado on toast instead of bacon and eggs. After all, for every chocolate milkshake, there is a strawberry smoothie.
Walk the talk: Watching those calories in your food is all good, but it would be even more beneficial if you pair it with some exercise. Join your local gym, start Yoga, or go for a walk or swim every day. Involve your family and friends and participate in a walking challenge together. More the merrier right?