How To Develop Healthy Eating Habits
It can be particularly hard to break some of your eating habits especially if you have been eating and enjoying your food this way for decades. Whilst some eating habits are harder to break than others, there are definitely some easy tips you can follow to try and break some of those unhealthy habits. You can read some of our healthy alternatives below:
Eating In Front of The TV
The TV dinner has become somewhat of an institution in some households and it’s an easy habit to fall into, all you need to take part in this habit is a TV and a meal of some sort, so why’s it a bad idea? When you are sat in front of the TV your mind is distracted and your concentration wavers, instead of concentrating on the task at hand ” eating” your concentrating on watching, this leads to less chewing and eating more quickly.
When our concentration is taken away from eating, it can lead to stuffing yourself silly, remember it takes 20 minutes for your stomach to inform your brain that it’s full, the less time you take to eat, the less time your body has to send you the signal it’s full.
Choose to – Watch then eat or to eat then watch, doesn’t matter which order you choose, just try not to do both at the same time.
You might be getting tired of hearing this but it’s so very true, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. For various reasons, some people choose to leave breakfast out altogether, some have a crazy high octane morning schedule, they wake and they’re out in 15 mins or others leave out breakfast because they think it will help them lose weight.
There are many of us who eat high-fat breakfasts: croissants, pastries, fried foods, but even the people who chose to eat this are better off than the people who miss it out altogether, it’s much better to consume the fatty food now than it is later, the body has the whole day to burn it off.
And what about protein, why do we rarely see any protein on our kitchen breakfast tables? This is a shame because protein is our body’s essential fuel source, it’s designed to give us energy and will keep us feeling full until lunchtime.
Try to include some chicken breast, turkey breast, eggs, fromage frais into your morning munch, a well-balanced meal which includes protein is a must to keep you going and will help you to stop snacking out at mid-morning.
And if you are really pushed for time you could always make a protein shake and mix it up with some fruits. Just as important as protein, is to have some fiber in the mornings, so why not mix up some fibrous fruits into the shake.
Choose to – Never miss or skip out breakfast, if there’s no time in the mornings, make something the night before, eg: make protein shakes. Try to add some protein to your breakfasts, have some fruit for fiber.
Avoid Weight Gain
There are a hundred health experts on every corner telling you ways of how to slim down, with terms like eating a balanced diet and exercising for 30 mins every day, but there are also plenty of things not to do..many of those extra kgs we carry are simply down to bad habits.
Eating just before you go to bed can be a disastrous thing to do, firstly because at this time of day the need for food rarely stems from hunger, most people eat at night because of an anxiety of some sort, and secondly people tend to have a preference for sweet things just before bed and sweet food equals calories.
Food takes around 3 hours to digest, it takes this amount of time for the breakdown of food and for your system to pass the partially digested results to the lower intestine, it’s best to let your stomach do its thing before getting into bed.
Sleep can also be disturbed by eating late because your stomach is still busy trying to digest, ” a small snack before bed is acceptable. But some foods are more likely to give you problems than others” says Joseph Murray, M.D., a gastroenterologist with the Mayo Clinic.
Food to avoid before bed:
- Chocolate cake cookies – Full of sugar but also chocolate contains a little caffeine, even the smallest amount of caffeine consumed before bed can disturb your sleep
- Fatty Foods – Dietary fats take a long time to digest, milk, avocado, ice cream, nuts, and butter are all bad news
- Acidic Foods – A lot of young guys suffer from acid reflux, and as you might expect lying down makes things worse, avoid spicy, fried foods, and tomato-based sauces (pizza)
- Alcohol – Alcohol may help you fall asleep, but it stops you from deep, sound, restorative sleep later in the night. It’s recommended you stop drinking at least 2 hours before bedtime.
Are You Eating Enough Veggies?
There’s a ton of reasons why many of us miss out on our daily veg allowance, fast food habits, no time to cook and prepare, lack of funds, some of the super foods can be very pricey! You might have grown up in a household that left you with an unhealthy diet and habits? If any of the above applies to you, it’s time to try and add some vegetables and fruits to all of your meals.
A recent report from the CDC proved eating the right amount of veg and fruits was an increasingly worrying problem across America, in fact, only 12.2% of American adults are eating enough fruits and just 9.3% of American adults are eating enough veg. On average this report shows that Americans are eating fruit just once a day and veggies just 1.7 times per day.
It’s important to try and increase these numbers because plant-heavy diets have been proved to lower the risk of heart disease, some cancers, obesity, and cardiovascular diseases.
What matters most when you select fruit and vegetables is variety and freshness. Choosing to try something different on a regular basis means a greater intake of a range of vitamins and minerals.
A good tip is to include as many different colors in your dish as possible. Remember most fruits and vegetables are relatively low in calories, contain hardly any fat and are salt-free, you have nothing to lose! Be sure to have a look at our top recommended vegetables and fruits below.
- Broccoli – A rich source of immune-boosting vitamins C and K
- Sweet Potatoes – A good source of fiber, as well as containing a good array of vitamins including iron, calcium, and selenium, vitamin C
- Carrots – High in beta-carotene, this is the substance that gives oranges their orange color, carrots are full of powerful anti-oxidants
- Kale – Making a comeback as a superfood, kale is rich in anti0oxidents, has more calcium than broccoli and is high in vitamins C and A
- Beetroot – One of the most widely studied vegetables out there, it is thought beetroot will help lower blood pressure, improve your stamina with exercise, may slow dementia, is a good source of potassium and other minerals.
- Nectarines – Are a particularly good source of vitamin C, they also contain vitamin A, fiber and potassium. With only 2 calories each, they are perfect for a mid-morning snack
- Plums – A low-calorie power food that’s full of digestive goodness, packed with dietary fiber, plums will help relieve constipation and digestive problems. High in potassium great for managing high blood pressure, plums also have a low glycemic index which will help control your blood sugar, lowering your risk of type 2 diabetes
- Apples – Apples are extremely rich in important antioxidants, flavonoids, and dietary fiber. The phytonutrients and antioxidants in apples are thought to reduce the risk of developing cancer, hypertension, diabetes and heart disease
- Cherries – For a low-calorie bite, you’re be hard pushed to beat the cherry. They are rich in D-glucaric acid, a super nutrient said to help with lowering cholesterol. Cherries also have an incredibly low glycaemic index, which makes them great for stabilizing blood sugar levels
- Blueberries – Blueberries are sweet, nutritious and are becoming increasingly popular, blueberries are amongst the most nutrient-dense berries, a one cup serving contains 4g of fiber, 25% of your RDA of Vitamin C, 36% of your RDA vitamin K, and 25% of your RDA of manganese. Blueberries are the KING of antioxidant foods, they are believed to contain the highest antioxidant capacity of all commonly consumed fruit and vegetables