This ‘healthy eating week‘ we have compiled a list of ten rules to live by to ensure you eat healthier every day. Lifestyle changes can be a much better way of losing weight and improving health and well-being, than following fad and temporary diet plans. If you can work to improve your lifestyle and the way you eat the overall benefit to your health could be much greater.
Rule 1: Take your time
It can take up to 20 minutes for your brain to register that you are full. Take more time to eat a meal and focus on chewing eat mouthful without rushing, to ensure you stop eating once you are full. If you rush food, you are more likely to overeat and therefore gain weight.
Rule 2: Drink water
By ensuring you drink plenty of water each day you are not only benefiting from a reduction of calories found in juices, squashes and fizzy drinks, you are also ensuring you are not confusing thirst for hunger and intaking more calories through food than required. Plus, keeping hydrated is great for your skin, and your energy levels will improve too!
Rule 3: Avoid frying food
Frying food will without a doubt make your meal higher in calories, and the taste may not even be as nice. Make every effort to bake, boil or steam food instead. This applies to most things you want to cook including meat and vegetables.
Rule 4: Avoid fast and convenient processed food at lunch time
Food on the run whilst out of the house at work or in-between the school run for example can generally mean less healthy options. Plus, the cost can be higher. Why not try and make better choices by either preparing a packed lunch to take with you or visiting many healthier food outlets now available such a vegetarian/vegan cafe or a salad bar.
Rule 5: Make sure your plate contains enough salad or vegetables
If you follow the rule that at least a third of your meal should be made up of vegetables or salad, you will be on track to achieving a balanced meal. This will also help you meet your ‘5-a day’ requirements. Try to fill up on vegetables or salad before eating the more indulgent elements of your meal.
Rule 6: Reduce plate size
It sounds obvious but if you have very large plates in your homes, your portion sizes are going to be bigger and you are going to eat more, meaning you are consuming more calories every day. By making the small change and purchasing smaller plates you are more likely to eat a reasonably sized meal.
Rule 7: Ask for salad dressings on the side
Choosing a salad when eating out can feel like the healthier option, and it might be. However, some salads come drenched in high calorie dressings, meaning the salad can be higher in calories than other choices. Ask for your dressing on the side so that you can limit your allowance and therefore control your calorie intake.
Rule 8: Reduced saturated fat products
A general avoidance or rationing of products high in saturated fat will help you to be healthier. Food products such as cakes, biscuits, cream, hard cheese and fatty cuts of meat, all contain saturated fats. Allow yourself to have these in moderation, or swap for healthier alternatives where possible.
Rule 9: Eat a healthy breakfast
Ensure you eat a healthy breakfast every day. This will ensure you are fuller for longer and are less likely to over-eat at other meals throughout the day or unnecessarily snack. A great breakfast can be eggs. Not only is it high in protein, but it contains many other nutrients and can make you feel much fuller for longer than other breakfast options such as cereal or croissants.
Rule 10: Eat fruit rather than drink it
Drinking fruit juice does count towards your ‘5 a day’ but you should limit this to no more than one glass per day as it is high in sugar, which is not great for your health and can cause problems with your teeth. Where possible try and eat a piece of fruit and have a glass of water, rather than having a glass of fruit juice.
You can find more information about a healthy lifestyle here.