I have never been known to be a healthy eater. As much as I would love to develop a healthier lifestyle, my appetite for bad food just gets the best of me. I’m sure I’m not the only one with this struggle.
Especially with the start of a new year, many of us probably made the resolution to eat healthier–or at least try to break bad eating habits. It’s just not so easy when you have no idea what to do. Let’s face it: it’s not just about avoiding temptations.
So, here are 10 tips on how to eat healthier this year:
10. Make water your best friend.
I know you’ve probably heard this lots of times before, but it’s true. Our bodies need water, and giving our body what it needs is a step towards the right direction. Drink every time you eat!
If you tend to forget to drink water, set alarms throughout the day to remind you. If you feel like you’re craving for something but can’t decide what, it’s probably water–so drink water!
9. Eat real food.
Just because something is edible, doesn’t mean it’s real food. Real food means non-processed food; food that comes in its original form. I don’t even mean just canned goods or instant noodles.
For example, if you want a slice of apple pie, reach for an actual apple instead. This, of course, reduces the unwanted chemicals that we intake. Plus, eating food in its original form keeps the needed vitamins and nutrients intact.
8. Eat breakfast!
I know it’s so easy to skip the first meal of the day, especially if you have to be up and running in this fast-paced world. But it’s true that it is the most important meal of the day. Having a healthy and heavy breakfast will give you all the energy that you need for your day’s activities, and can help you avoid binge-eating on unhealthy food throughout the rest of the day.
7. Cook your own food.
There’s nothing like knowing exactly what you’re eating. Cooking your own food lets you decide which ingredients to use, how much of this and that to put, make us of healthier alternatives, and doesn’t let fast food companies sabotage your journey to healthy living. If you’re worried about the time it’s going to take, prepare your meals the night before (or even on the weekend) to make things easy peasy.
6. Focus when you eat.
Multitasking can be bad for your eating habits. If you tend to eat while working or studying, then you’ll probably understand that it distracts you from keeping track of how much you’ve already eaten. Before you know it, you’ve got several bags of chips sprawled on the floor after finally finishing that paper due tomorrow.
If you’re really feeling hungry, just take a break and eat on the dining table.
5. Don’t eat too quickly.
It usually takes the brain about 15-20 minutes from the moment you’ve started eating to signal that you’re already full. If you’ve finished your meal before that, then you’re probably going to take in more food than you’ve intended.
To avoid this, pace yourself when eating. Put your spoon down after each bite. Chew your food thoroughly. It’s not a competition! Enjoy your meal.
4. Avoid midnight snacks.
If you find yourself walking towards the fridge in the middle of the night, just imagine that it’s a store closed for the night. And brush your eat an hour after eating dinner so that you won’t be tempted to eat again.
Or you can just sleep early.
3. Plan your meals.
It’s going to be a lot easier to avoid unhealthy food when you know exactly what you should be eating. So, plan your meals like it’s your job. Do it on a Sunday so that you can have enough time to really focus on what kind of food you’ll be eating throughout the week. Having a planned healthy meal will help you steer away from the bad stuff that we tend to reach for when we get “hungry”.
Plus, having meals planned on a Sunday can allow you to prepare the actual ingredients and meals!
2. Eat with intent.
Stop eating just because! Stop eating mindlessly! Eat when you need to, not just when you want to. It helps to keep an eating schedule. It also helps to keep your portions small. So, pull out your smaller plates and use them instead of your regular-sized dinner plates.
1. Have a health buddy!
Be accountable. Have a friend that you can trust to be on this journey to healthy living with you. Have someone that can truly help you out–someone who can (and knows how to) stop you from making bad choices. And have someone you can have fun eating healthy with!
Do you have tips on how to eat healthier? Share it with us!