Eating healthy is a really noble goal, but it’s so easy to mess up once and just give up altogether. In the end, the only thing we manage to do is keep eating unhealthy snacks, junk food and overprocessed dishes, but while feeling even guiltier about it. Forget the fad diets and the extreme changes, here are some easy ways to help you change your eating habits and eat healthy, without the suffering.
Freeze your veggies
Next time you go grocery shopping, throw in a few more veggies than usual. When you get home, portion them and stick them in the freezer. Now you’ll always have a serving of veggies handy that you can add to every meal. Try to incorporate those veggies to all your dishes. Pasta with broccoli, spinach omelet, veggie stir fry and even veggie pizza are all great ways to do this.
Go grocery shopping on Fridays
Instead of rushing the store on Sunday like everyone else, and wade through the crowds to buy your food, go on Friday after work. This way, you will be less likely to order take out or eat out during the weekend, because your pantry will be well-stocked. Besides, you get the whole weekend to plan your meals for the week and even prepare some in advance.
Eat the vegetables on your plate first
This way, you will fill up with healthy fiber and nutrients before you get to fatty foods or carbs, so you will eat less. In addition, you should stop eating once you are full and not force yourself to clean the plate. You can always have leftovers. The best way to eat around your plate is veggies first, then protein and lastly, carbs.
Portion your snacks
If you are eating chips or pop-corn, don’t eat out of the bag. Your brain will never tell you to stop until you finish it. Serve a portion on a plate or bowl and put the bag away to maintain control. While we are at it, it’s best if you don’t get distracted during your meals. When you are doing something else while you eat, you tend to overeat because your body is only half-registering the food. Practice mindful eating instead, paying attention to the smells, colors and flavor on your plate.
Too much salt can lead to hypertension, heart disease and liquid retention. Instead of using salt to season all your food, use other spices. Garlic powder, basil, onion and curry are great, rich choices that will bring out the flavor in your food, while providing additional nutritional value. This way, you get more varied meals and reduce risk factors. It’s a win-win.