Eating healthy is a lifestyle… and like any lifestyle, it will require daily habits and consistency. Below, you’ll find 5 healthy eating habits that will be easy to inculcate and implement in your daily life.
It’s easier to form good habits than to break bad ones. By adopting these habits, you’ll slowly wean yourself off the negative eating habits that are holding you hostage against your best intentions.
- Drink a glass of water – While drinking water may not seem like an ‘eating habit’ per se, it’s one of the best habits you could develop. Very often, thirst is mistaken for hunger. By drinking a glass of water about twenty minutes before a meal, you may find that your hunger disappears and you no longer need food. This will allow you to eat less and cut down on excess calories. Water also aids in digestion and will help your body digest the foods you consume optimally.
- Add an extra serving of vegetables – Cruciferous vegetables such as cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, kale, etc. are high in fiber and take up more space in your stomach than the usual oily foods. It’s best to consume your vegetables and fruit BEFORE you start on the protein foods. Not only does this practice prevent bloating and bad digestion, but when you eat your vegetables first, your stomach registers that it’s full faster because the plant-based foods take up more space. You’ll then require less of the simple carbs such as rice, bread, pasta, etc. to feel sated. Once again, you’ll be consuming less unwanted calories and your diet will be healthier.
- Eat mindfully – Eating slowly and mindfully is one of the best ways to watch what you’re eating. Rather than ravenously gobbling up every morsel in sight, it’s ideal to take your time and chew and taste your food before swallowing. It takes around 20 to 30 minutes for your stomach to register that it’s full. During this period, it’s easy to overeat. However, if you take your time during your meals, you’ll eat less and by the time your stomach knows it’s full, you’d not have consumed too many calories.
- Use healthy oils – Hydrogenated food oils sold in supermarkets appear clean and golden. They’re portrayed as healthy oils. Nothing could be further from the truth. These oils have been processed and are extremely unhealthy. They cause inflammation, obesity and many other health issues. Do your best to steer clear of these unhealthy vegetable oils. Use extra virgin olive oil and cold pressed coconut oil in your meals. Olive oil can be used in salads and vegetable dishes, while coconut oil can be used for frying, etc. since it has a high smoke point. These oils are the good fats that your body needs. Additionally, do consume a fish oil supplement daily and you’ll have all the healthy fats your body needs daily.
- Cook your own meals – Cooking at home seems to be a lost art these days with everyone leading hectic lives. It seems much easier to just dine out or order a pizza to be delivered to your home. However, if you want to adopt a clean and healthy diet, it’s best to cook your own meals at home. Aim to eat at home at least 5 days a week. You’ll notice a difference in the way you feel and will even experience weight loss. Home-cooked meals are almost always healthier, contain less detrimental additives such as MSG and will leave you feeling nourished and content for hours after the meal.
Adopt these 5 healthy eating habits and your relationship with food will be better and your meals will be much healthier and more wholesome.