Starting healthful food habits for a healthy life doesn’t restrict you with the variety of food that you’ve been eating for most of your life. While there are a lot of recommendation and tips out there that may be confusing for some to follow, the key pointer they have is to eat healthy food and cut the junk food out.
To help you start, we have listed some healthful food habits you can use to plan out your journey to a healthier life.
1. Prepare Your Meals
Eating out at restaurants may be okay occasionally, but when you prepare your food, you are more in control of what goes into your food. Studies show that the time spent on food preparation may have positive effects on healthier eating habits among adults.
2. Use a Meal Planner
Meal planners can help you organize the food you are going to eat for the week or the month. It’s also good to make plans ahead and monitor if there are healthy changes in your body and mind.
3. Always Keep Hydrated
Thirst is commonly mistaken as hunger, that’s why keeping yourself hydrated would result in healthier food habits. In addition, drinking plenty of water helps flush out waste products and toxins in our bodies.
4. Be Mindful of Liquid Calories
Some liquid calories are healthy beverages such as milk and 100% fruit juice. However, most come from juice, soda, or alcohol which are often called stealth calories or those that we don’t usually notice are high in calories.
5. Cut Down On Snacks
Consider snacks such as chips, brownies, or cookies as treats that you consume every so often. Try to eat junk foods in moderation as they contain empty calories.
6. Chew Your Food Well
Take time in eating your food so you can eat them well. According to Cara Stewart, a dietitian and nutritionist, it takes approximately 20 minutes for your brain to register that you are already full.
7. Read food labels
When going out for a grocery, remember to read the labels before buying anything. It’s important to be aware of what manufacturers put in certain foods that may not be right for you.
Make sure to check out the nutrition facts and see if they fit your macros or the type of lifestyle you have. If you are on a ketogenic diet, make sure to check for foods that are high in carbs as they may kick you out of ketosis.
8. Don’t Shop When You’re Hungry
According to Reuters, researchers discovered that individuals who hadn’t eaten all afternoon yet chose high-calorie food compared to those who were given snacks prior to grocery shopping. Better to eat first before going out for a grocery to avoid unnecessary purchases.
9. Control Portion Sizes
If your aim is to lose weight, the key is to burn more calories than you consume. Start by reducing the portion of unhealthy food that you intake, and you will notice yourself craving less of these kinds of food.
10. Eat Foods That are High in Fiber and Protein
Foods that are high in fiber and protein help keep you feeling full which prevents you from overeating.
11. Reduce Sugar Intake
Reducing sugar in your diet also reduces your cravings to sugary food and drinks.
12. Choose Food Over Supplements
A balanced diet consists of food that is also rich in vitamins and minerals that help immune system to be stronger in fighting diseases. Supplements should not be a substitute for different kinds of healthy food.
13. Eat Varieties of Food
Be flexible with the food that you eat daily. Eating wide varieties of fruits and vegetables means that you also get different kinds of nutrients that you need in your daily grind.
14. Stop Mindless Eating
Cornell University food psychologist Brian Wansink, Ph.D., found out that the bigger the plate or bowl you eat from, the more you consume food unknowingly. Eat from smaller dishes and stop eating straight from a container.
15. Eat Consciously at Social Events
Sometimes, we get carried away when we go out and eat with friends or relatives at social events. Try to be aware of the food and drinks that you consume to avoid excessive eating.