Eating a healthy diet is not about strict limitations, staying unrealistically thin, or depriving yourself of the foods you love. Rather, it’s about feeling great, having more energy, improving your health, and boosting your mood. Healthy eating doesn’t have to be overly complicated. The truth is that while some specific foods or nutrients have been shown to have a beneficial effect on mood, it’s your overall dietary pattern that is most important. The cornerstone of a healthy diet should be to replace processed food with real food whenever possible. Eating food that is as close as possible to the way nature made it can make a huge difference to the way you think, look, and feel. By using some simple tips, you can cut through the confusion and learn how to create—and stick to a tasty,varied, and nutritious diet that is as good for your mind and for your body. Making a sudden, radical changes, such as eating nothing but cabbage soup, can lead to short term weight loss. However, such radical changes are neither healthy nor a good idea and won’t be successful in the long run. Permanently improving your eating habits requires a thoughtful approach in which you reflect, replace, and reinforce.
- REFLECT: on all of your specific eating habits, both bad and
good; and, your common triggers for unhealthy eating.
- REPLACE : your unhealthy eating habits with healthier ones.
- REINFORCE : your new, healthier eating habits.
SWITCHING TO A HEALTHY DIET
Switching to a healthy diet doesn't have to be an all or nothing proposition. A better approach is to make a few small changes at a time. Keeping your goals modest that can help you achieve more in the long term without feeling deprived or overwhelmed by a major diet overhaul.Think of planning a healthy diet as a number of small, manageable steps
like adding a salad to your diet once a day. As your small changes become habit, you can continue to add more healthy choices.
A portion is the amount of food you put on your plate, while a serving is an exact amount of food Serving sizes have ballooned recently. By serving your meals on smaller plates or in bowls, you can trick your brain into thinking it's a larger portion. If you don't feel satisfied at the end of a meal, add more leafy greens.
Add More Fruit And Vegetables To Your Diet
Fruit and vegetables are low in calories and nutrient dense, which means they are packed with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber. Focus on eating the recommended daily amount of at least five servings of fruit and vegetables and it will naturally fill you up and help you cut back on unhealthy foods. A serving is half a cup of raw fruit or veg or a small apple or banana, for example. Most of us need to double the amount we currently eat.
To increase your intake:
- Add antioxidant-rich berries to your favorite breakfast cereal
- Eat a medley of sweet fruit—oranges, mangos, pineapple,
- Swap your usual rice or pasta side dish for a colorful salad
Instead of eating processed snack foods, snack on vegetables such as carrots, snow peas, or cherry tomatoes along with a spicy hummus dip or peanut butter. While plain salads and steamed veggies can quickly become bland, there are plenty of ways to add taste to your vegetable dishes.
Add color. Not only do brighter, deeper colored vegetables contain higher concentrations of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, but they can vary the flavor and make meals more visually appealing. Add color using fresh or sundried tomatoes, glazed carrots or beets, roasted red cabbage wedges, yellow squash, or sweet, colorful peppers.
Liven up salad greens. Branch out beyond lettuce. Kale, arugula,spinach, mustard greens, broccoli, and Chinese cabbage are all packed with nutrients. To add flavor to your salad greens, try drizzling with olive oil, adding a spicy dressing, or sprinkling with almond slices, chickpeas, a little bacon, parmesan, or goat cheese.
Satisfy your sweet tooth. Naturally sweet vegetables—such as carrots,beets, sweet potatoes, yams, onions, bell peppers, and squash—add sweetness to your meals and reduce your cravings for added sugar. Add
Cook green beans, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and asparagus in new ways. Instead of boiling or steaming these healthy sides, try grilling, roasting, or pan frying them with chili flakes, garlic, shallots, mushrooms,or onion. Or marinate in tangy lemon or lime before cooking.