Eating healthy can often seem overwhelming. You may think it’s necessary to follow a strict plan, change everything all at once or avoid foods you enjoy. However, restrictive rules can cause you to quit a new eating plan. Below are 10 tips to help you achieve your healthy eating goals.
1. Choose to Modify One Meal at a Time
You can start cleaning up your breakfast by trading a ‘Dunkin’ Run’ for sprouted grain toast with peanut butter and a bowl of fruit or Greek yogurt, berries and walnuts. Simple and healthy foods can be fast and easy to assemble. Once you like your meal plan, move on to tweaking lunch.
2. Clear Out Your Pantry, Fridge and Freezer of Junk Foods
When your pantry, fridge or freezer is stocked with healthy foods, not junk foods, you can consciously make better choices.
3. Use a Smaller Plate
Eating off salad plates has been shown to reduce food consumption at meals by 10 percent.
4. Keep Vegetables and Fruit Front and Center
In the morning, fill a plate or container with ready-to-eat vegetables and fruit like cherry tomatoes, carrots, sliced cucumbers, broccoli, apple slices and clementines. What you don’t eat in the daytime can be quickly added to a salad or stir fry for dinner.
5. Slow Down at Meals
It takes 20 minutes for your brain to know you are full. Practice setting a 20-minute timer and see if you can stretch your meal out over that time.
6. Prepare Foods in Advance
Think of ways to prep your meals during the weekend to eat better throughout the week. For example, you can prep raw veggies and assemble a Greek yogurt dip, make a crock pot meal, prep overnight oats, cook egg and veggie breakfast cups or assemble a hardy veggie and legume salad. Being prepared not only saves time, but it also saves you from indulging in extra calories, added sugar and unhealthy fats that are commonly found in packaged and takeout foods.
7. Preload Your Meal with 12 Ounces of Water
Drinking water before eating can help you consume less and slow down during mealtimes, allowing you to enjoy your foods more.
8. Shop from a Grocery List
A grocery list is a great tool to help with meal planning. Stick to your list to reduce unnecessary purchases.
9. Get to Bed at a Reasonable Time
Going to sleep at an appropriate time prevents unintended late-night snacking in addition to helping you feel better in the morning.
10. Try Not to Think of Certain Foods as “Off-Limits”
Banning a food can make you want that food more. Instead, include a small portion of a favorite treat as an occasional indulgence.
If you have questions or would like to learn ways to eat healthier, please click here for more information or call 630−286−5090 to schedule an appointment with a member of our Nutritional Services team.