Healthy eating is not about sticking to a strict regime or denying yourself some of the foods you love. It’s about having more energy and keeping yourself healthy by fueling your body with nutritious foods. It’s about ‘eating to live’ not ‘living to eat’.
The food choices you make each day can either improve your health or put you at risk of illnesses like diabetes, heart disease and possibly cancer.
Make a commitment to yourself to make healthy food choices each day. To help learn the habits of healthy eating here are a few simple tips:
1. Break it into manageable steps: It’s not going to happen overnight, the key here is to make little changes each day. Add a salad to your lunch or dinner each day. Swap full milk to trim milk. Cook with olive oil instead of butter. Little changes will soon become habits that you won’t even think twice about.
2. Keep it simple: Don’t be too concerned with calories and weighing your food. More importantly remember your portion sizes. Healthy eating is eating in moderation.
3. Slow down and enjoy your meal: Quite often we eat on the run or at our desk and we are not even aware of what or how much we have eaten. If at all possible, sit down at a table to eat your meals, eat slowly, chewing each mouthful. Enjoy the taste, texture and flavor of your meals.
4. Think of variety: The four main food groups: Diary, Fruit & Vegetables, Protein and Carbohydrates. Think freshness and colour – fruits and vegetables are the foundation of a healthy diet.
5. Drink plenty of water: Water is vital for good health. Stay hydrated by drinking at least 2 litres of water each day.
6. Plan ahead: Healthy eating starts with planning ahead. It’s easy to make healthy food choices when your fridge and pantry are stocked with healthy provisions. Prepare a weekly meal plan of well-balanced breakfasts, lunches and dinners and healthy snacks. Use this to write out your shopping list and stick to it!