Benefits of eating well
It is not groundbreaking news that eating healthy is important. Simply turn on the television, radio or your computer, and as a society we are bombarded with healthy eating information. Still, even though we are armed with all the information we could ever need or want, few of us are making the necessary changes and sticking to them. But eating healthy does not have to be a drag and making elementary changes to just a few of your eating habits can reap huge rewards.
So why eat healthy? Eating healthy will help you lose or maintain your weight and that means that you are at less risk for cardiovascular disease, diabetes, high cholesterol and other ailments. Eating healthy is important because our bodies draw energy from the nutrients in food. This energy directly contributes not only to our body’s natural ability to repair itself, but studies also prove that well rounded eating habits can improve our moods and slow down the aging process.
Improving your diet is easy if you keep a few things in mind. First, you must be realistic. If you detest broccoli, pronouncing that you will incorporate it into your dietary plan several times a week is going to do two things. One, it will make you miserable. Two it will put you on a fast track for failure. Instead, slowly bring foods that are healthier into your diet that you actually like. If you have a sweet tooth, add fruit to even just one meal. Love salt? Try adding a low-fat granola into your snacking routine.
Do not make all the changes at once. Instead, begin by limiting yourself to say, one snack per day instead of your normal three (or however many). Then commit to eating 3-5 small meals per day, paying attention to what they consist of. Be sure to eat breakfast every day. This will get your metabolism started and give you fuel to begin the day. Next, set a goal to do 30 minutes of physical activity a few times per week. This can activity of your choice, but make sure it is something you enjoy! Take a walk with a friend or join a local Zumba class.
Make subtle changes to your eating first. Replace mayonnaise with mustard for lots of flavor but many less calories. Use lean meats (pork and beef) and replace meats with fish at least twice per week. Gradually switch your daily products (milk and cheese) to lower fat ones.
Dressings should be placed or ordered on the side. Try dipping your fork in the dressing and then picking up your bite. You will still be able to taste it, but your food won’t be drowned in it; this saves calories and fats.
Don’t drink away your daily caloric intake. One soda has as much as 200 calories. Instead opt for water or flavored water if you want something other than plain. Gradually lessen the sugar and cream in coffees or teas-if only by a teaspoon.
Small changes will add up quickly. Above all else, allow yourself one “cheat day” per week. This can be a full flavored dessert or a glass of wine/beer. This simple reward system will make sure you do not feel deprived-the number one reason people give up on or fail their eating programs.