5 Essential Tips for Eating Healthier At Home This Year
Around the world, people are continually trying to find strategies for eating healthier on a daily basis. Too many people believe that in order to treat your body well, you have to deprive it of everything that tastes good – but that couldn't be further from the truth! With some planning, a few simple switches, and a "moderation" mindset, you can satisfy both your stomach and your tastebuds.
If you are struggling with staying on track with your health and wellness goals, read on for five essential tips for eating healthier at home this year.
1. Incorporate meal planning into your routine.
One of the easiest ways to start eating healthier at home is to get into the habit of meal-planning. Instead of trying to put together meals three times a day, every day, when you meal plan, you ask the question, "What am I going to eat?" once for the whole week.
The process of meal planning can be broken down into three simple steps:
- Choose your recipes.
- Purchase the necessary ingredients.
- Prepare those ingredients.
Meal planning can not only save you money (because you are only buying food that you are definitely going to eat) and stress, but there are also a variety of health benefits that come with this approach to cooking. By planning your meals and snacks in advance, it increases the likelihood that you will make healthy food choices and not simply default to your favorite snack. Meal planning ensures that you always have a balanced meal filled with nutrient-dense food, prepared and ready to go.
Last but not least, planning meals helps you to learn to exercise greater portion control because you can ascertain how much you are really eating – a lesson that is invaluable when you go out to eat at a restaurant.
2. Aim to consume less processed food.
No matter what your health goals are, you always want to be looking for ways to decrease the amount of processed food you consume and increase the variety of whole foods you do eat. This is why meal planning can be so helpful because it makes it easier for you to replace frozen meals and instant ramen with whole foods such as fresh fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
Whole foods are crucial for everyone's diet because they are filled with necessary nutrients such as protein, fiber, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals. On the other hand, processed foods contain empty calories and are usually high in unhealthy fats, added sugar, and sodium. While they may taste delicious, these foods can lead to serious health issues such as obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
In order to successfully cut back on the number of processed foods you consume, you want to treat it like a detox. Instead of trying to cut everything out immediately, start by taking small steps toward a less processed diet. This will increase the likelihood that your new eating habits will stick. For example, begin by supplementing each meal with fresh foods such as a banana with breakfast and a side dish of vegetables at lunch. Eventually, half of your plate should be made up of fruits and vegetables.
3. Rethink your beverages.
Sugary drinks are another thing that may taste delicious but are not suitable for your body. The consumption of sugary drinks is often linked to weight gain because they consist of a significant amount of calories, yet don't make you feel full. For this reason, people regularly drink these beverages on top of the calories that they are consuming from food.
Sugary drinks are one of the most fattening features of the modern diet, and high consumption of them leads to an accumulation of belly fat, a serious type of fat associated with metabolic disease. Additionally, the consumption of sugary beverages is linked to Type 2 diabetes, liver damage, premature aging, and anxiety.
Therefore, when you are home, consider giving up the sugary drink habit. Sugary drinks include items such as iced flavored coffees, sports drinks, sodas, and fruit juices. So, instead of having a soda or packaged juice with dinner, opt for infused water or other unsweetened beverages.
Other delicious drink options that can help you cut back on added sugar are smoothies, homemade iced tea, and herbal tea. Just make sure you are watching out for any hidden sugars!
4. Don't work near the kitchen.
If you are working from home, it can be easy to keep your nutrition in check as you have constant access to the kitchen, and it can be extremely tempting to wander over and grab a snack (for the fifth time) when the cupboards are in your line of vision.
Therefore, it is vital that you try not to work in or near the kitchen. Instead, commit to yourself that the only time you will enter the kitchen throughout the workday is when you are having a scheduled snack or meal. If this is too challenging to do (or you have no option but to work in the kitchen), then consider placing a sign on the door reminding yourself that the kitchen is closed until the next planned meal.
5. Plan your indulgences.
As with most of these tips, when it comes to indulgences, your best strategy is to plan them in advance. That way, you have something to look forward to! For example, you might designate Friday night as take-out night when you can order food to be delivered from the best steakhouse in Dubai.
If you have eaten healthy all week, then it is okay to treat yourself to something more indulgent like a Lamb Rack or Beef Asado; you may even want to add on some dessert! When you savor the taste of the Treliche that you have ordered, you will be happy that you made healthy decisions throughout the week. After all, it is all about eating high-quality food in moderation.
What do you do to stay healthy when eating at home? Do you have any additional tips and tricks to add to this list? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!