10 Tips to Change Your Eating Habits for the Better.Eating healthy doesn’t have to be as hard as you think it does. In fact, if you use these 10 simple tips, it’ll be easy to make healthy eating habits that you can live with and maintain throughout your life!
1) Focus on Simple Meals
In order to make healthy changes in your diet, try having a more plant-based, simple meal. These types of meals will have more natural sources of nutrients and less empty calories, which can lead to weight loss. What you need: 1) Protein: Eggs, soybeans, lentils, tempeh. 2) A good fat source: Unsalted nuts and seeds, olive oil. 3) Carbohydrates: Brown rice or quinoa pasta, barley or oatmeal cereal.
2) Eat Slowly and Mindfully
It is true that eating slowly can help reduce overeating and help you feel more satisfied with less food. Research suggests that it takes at least 20 minutes for your stomach to register feeling full. In an interesting study, people who were served a pizza within three minutes ate about four times as much pizza as those who had to wait in line for 15 minutes. Most importantly, be mindful of how you are eating. Rather than focusing on what’s next on your plate, think about what you’re currently putting in your mouth and how it tastes.
3) Watch Your Sugar Intake
Sugar is an addicting substance. Sugar may not be addictive like cocaine, but it affects your brain in a similar way because both of these substances flood your reward center and create a euphoric high. As with most foods that are bad for you, moderation is key; however, many Americans exceed that limit and this can lead to conditions such as obesity or diabetes.
4) Eat with Others
In order to change your eating habits, it is important to surround yourself with people who have healthy habits. It is never an easy process of changing your eating habits, but making small changes over time will help make it a little bit easier. Cook together with your friends, or go out and get some fresh air while enjoying each other’s company while not taking in a bunch of unhealthy food. It’s really hard when you’re at home and you have nothing but fast food within reach because that is all that’s convenient, so let the people in your life know what you are going through so they can understand better and be supportive. If possible, invite a dietitian or health expert into your life so they can provide a voice of reason and insight into how you are feeling.
5) Exercise First Thing in the Morning
With such busy lives, the majority of us will tell you that time is our biggest problem. But have you ever thought about how many hours you could save by exercising first thing in the morning? Yes, it requires a change in routine and is more difficult at first, but after a few weeks of doing it, waking up and sweating before breakfast every day becomes easy. In fact, people who do this say they feel so refreshed and energized after they’re done they can’t wait to take on their day.
6) Water Before Each Meal
Aiming to drink two cups of water before each meal can drastically improve your digestion, give you more energy, and leave you feeling less bloated. Before each meal, drink a tall glass of filtered water with lemon (or a low-sodium broth) about 30 minutes before eating. Be sure to sip on the beverage slowly, but take in enough so that it will have some effect on your appetite. Drink at least one cup of water per mealtime and consume at least eight glasses per day (total).
7) Cook Multiple Meals in One Session
Cooking several meals at once is an easy way to save time and money. This will also reduce temptation and lessen urges to snack between meals. Doing this with a partner or roommate can make it even more fun. The biggest benefit of this technique is that you’ll always have healthy food on hand so you’re less likely to be tempted by unhealthy snacks, too.
8) Replace Tasteless Foods With Natural Seasonings
There are a number of ways you can change your cooking habits without changing what you cook. You can buy fresh ingredients and not use any processed foods. You can also substitute tasteless foods with natural seasonings, such as using garlic, onions, lemons, thyme or basil. Plus, this will give you an opportunity to experiment with different spices while trying new recipes. It might take some time before these new techniques become second nature but it will be worth it in the end when you’re able to enjoy your meal without feeling guilty about how much you ate.
9) Switch It Up With New Flavors
Instead of cooking with salt, try adding something like cumin, chili powder, oregano, paprika or cinnamon. These will give your food a flavor boost without all of the sodium. Season your food with garlic instead of onion or shallots to get more out of your vegetable consumption. Replace bread crumbs with oats in meatballs and meatloaf recipes. Try swapping out high-fat sauces and go low-fat or vegetarian style sauces instead (barbecue sauce on cauliflower wings anyone? Add more fruit into your breakfast by eating things like pineapple or sliced oranges with yogurt (instead of honey) for an energizing start to the day.
10) Get Plenty of Sleep
You are what you eat, so take care of your health by getting enough sleep. Getting a full night’s rest will improve the quality of your skin and hair, as well as regulate hormones, reduce stress levels, and help prevent weight gain.
Sleeping is also important because it helps your body recover from damage that occurred during daytime activities. To get an optimal amount of rest, commit to sleeping at least eight hours per night. Find out more tips on how much sleep you need in this post.
- Replace sodas and sweetened beverages with a glass of water. Sodas, sports drinks, and fruit juice can lead to weight gain or health problems because they provide too many calories and often contain large amounts of sugar. Water is calorie-free and fills your stomach faster than other fluids.
- Take time to eat slowly instead of eating while doing other things such as watching TV or reading. It takes about 20 minutes for your brain and stomach to send signals that you’re full after you start eating so it’s best not to eat too quickly which will leave you hungry again soon after.