Old habits die hard. At the same time, building new habits is also a difficult path. Increased consumption of processed food, rapid urbanization, and changing lifestyles have caused a shift in dietary patterns over the past few years. In today’s fast-paced world, maintaining a healthy diet is often easier said than done. For starters, trying to sieve through the array of healthy diets to figure out which one is appropriate for one’s system can be a challenge. Even after detecting an eating pattern, maintaining that healthy food schedule throughout the day has its fair share of difficulties. The good news is that sticking to healthy eating is possible and it does not even mean that one has to give up on their favorite foods.
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There are many ways to adopt and manage a habit of long-term healthy eating. One can opt for whole foods as they are packed with essential nutrients like protein, fiber, vitamins, healthy fats, and minerals as opposed to processed foods which contain empty calories. More than the obvious risk of diabetes and obesity, sugary drinks can cause liver damage, aging, and anxiety. Hence, instead of sipping packaged drinks, one can consume unsweetened beverages, fresh fruit juices, or infused water. Usually, when one is hungry, they would grab the first thing within reach. Thus, keeping healthy quick bites in easily accessible places makes a difference. The right amount of macronutrients like proteins, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals is essential to developing a healthy diet. It is revealed that eating on a large plate tricks your brain into thinking that you have eaten less. Eating on a smaller plate helps avoid overeating. One needs to adopt the habit of counting nutrients and not calories to improve the quality of their diet. Adding more probiotic foods like apple cider vinegar, yogurt, and soft cheese to the diet also aids in building the immune system. Similarly, chia seeds, flaxseeds, and pumpkin seeds act as nutritional powerhouses.
Opting for a healthy diet can be adopted as a form of weight loss. But eating healthy is more important in the long run than losing those extra pounds in a short span. Creating a healthy diet should also include food and recipes that are not only nutritious but also enjoyable, sustainable, and conducive to one’s circumstances. Depriving yourself of the foods you are fond of can lead to cravings and end up backfiring. Rather than completely giving up the unhealthy options that you love, try consuming them occasionally along with practicing portion control. Maintaining a balanced diet while eating out might be very challenging. Nonetheless, more restaurants are now coming up with healthier options. Mindfully choosing such places and researching the menu can help maintain the diet while enjoying eating out. Staying hydrated is also extremely important.
A diet rich in vitamins and minerals aids mental health disorders including anxiety, depression, and attention deficit. Self-monitoring calories by maintaining a journal and using a smartphone or app to track one’s daily calorie intake, weight, and activity levels is a smart way to track progress. One must not feel discouraged if it takes longer for the new healthy habits to sink in. As long as the expectations are realistic with a commitment to re-evaluate progress, the habit will move in a positive direction.
Author Bio: Founder & CEO, BodyFirst
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