If you’ve been struggling with your weight and have tried every diet without success, you’ll want to be sure you come back to some of the basics of healthy eating to be sure you have those in place. Sometimes it’s possible to put your focus in the wrong place and forget about some of the fundamentals. If you’ve been following me, you’ll know I post regularly about some of these basics, including in this post with 8 tips for healthy eating.
To help you review some basic healthy eating habits some more, I put together tips from registered dietitians and health professionals. Check them out below!
1. One healthy eating habit is to cook at home more often.
When you cook your own food, you control what goes into it and it will be healthier than if you ate at a restaurant or take-out. Home-cooked food is lower in sodium, unhealthy fats and calories. When you prepare your own food, you can also add more vegetables and whole grains than you would probably get at a restaurant.
Cooking at home is also a great way to connect with family members and if you have kids, getting them involved in cooking is teaching them a life skill. Lots of memories are made in the kitchen.
2. More doesn’t taste better, it’s just more.
When you enjoy your food and the creamy, crunchy, sweet, salty, refreshing, savory deliciousness, one serving may just be enough to satisfy.
3. Setting up your environment to make the “healthy choice the easy choice” (to quote the Blue Zones Project), is another way to make a habit out of healthy eating.
When your kitchen or office are set up to support healthy choices, you are more likely to follow through on those. Packing your pantry, fridge, and freezer full of whole grains, lean proteins, colorful fruits and vegetables, healthy oils, spices, and nuts/seeds, naturally guides you to choose nourishing foods. Many of these foods can also be tossed together quickly to make a simple, satisfying, pantry-staples meal! Learn more about pantry staples here.
– Lexi Endicott, RD, LD, CCMS of To Taste
4. Practice mindful eating for the whole family.
I use 5 steps: 1. Assess your hunger, 2. Portion your food according to your hunger, 3. Take 3 deep breaths before you begin eating, 4. Use all 5 senses as you eat, 5. Pause halfway through your meal to assess fullness. These cues help you slow down, get in touch with your hunger cues, reduce stress and improve digestion. Practicing mindful eating has helped my clients lose weight and improve their relationship with food.
5. I recommend eating slowly and not while doing other things.
For example, don’t eat and drive. Try not to work or watch TV while eating. Then you can lose focus on what you’re eating and not easily register that you’re full. And look for whole plant-based foods to help provide a natural source of fiber.
6. Take a deep breath before the meal and assess
Take a deep breath before the meal and assess your current state of hunger and to help you relax so you can eat in a calm state. Then pausing through the meal to reassess hunger.
7. Eat the rainbow!!!
Try to incorporate different colours in your meals.. this will increase your fruit and vegetable intake and will also make the meals more appealing. And eat with all the senses. Enjoy the taste, as well as the look, smell and texture of the food.
Meghna Pandit, M.Sc.(DFSM), M.Sc.(Microbiology), NET, CNCC
There are some themes in these suggestions! Mindfulness is really important when it comes to healthy eating, as well as making sure you are eating different foods, have healthy food on hand, and prepare your own food at least some of the time. With the healthy eating habits above in mind, you’ll be on the right track toward better health.