As you get older, you are constantly being told that looking after yourself is the number one priority in life. If you don’t look after yourself, how you going to go to look after your family? And so, there may be a point in life that scares you into adopting a healthy regime. Whether a family member has been taken ill, or you are beginning to realize your mortality, it can be a big shock to the system, especially when you’ve been living life in quite an unhealthy manner. If you spend more time on the phone to your favourite pizza place than to your parents, and spend more time in front of the television than in front of the stove, it’s time to learn how to embrace a healthy diet. So, here is how to eat healthily for once in your life!
Reduce the temptations
Very simply, if there’s an abundance of junk food in your store cupboard, you are going to eat it! For any person starting a new eating regime, it’s important for you to get rid of all of the bad foods that gives you that temptation to snack on when you feel the healthy foods aren’t doing anything for you. In some respects, it is like going cold turkey, but it’s not about making an extreme shifts in your eating habits, not at the start anyway…
Don’t overhaul everything!
People think that by changing everything in their kitchen, they are going to automatically eat healthily. This isn’t always the case, and if you are hungry and you want a candy bar, you are going to find one! In starting a new way of eating, it’s much better for you to change one habit at a time. This is going to help make certain habits stick. If you went from a life of pizzas and pies to salads and seeds, the temptation to go back to your old way of eating is going to rear its head. Instead, you are much better off changing one little thing at a time. For example, if you have an evening meal, put some vegetables or salad on the side. Gradually, you will get used to the fact that there is going to be salad or vegetables with every meal. Remember, it can take at least three weeks to develop a new habit. So, by having a little bit of healthy food on the side of your plate with every meal, this is the best starting point.
Make it part of your lifestyle
And as you slowly begin to add more healthy foods into your diet, you can then start to tip the scales more in the favor of healthy foods. You can replace that fried piece of meat with a grilled bit of chicken, and you will slowly begin to learn more about making these foods taste good (which is a very important part of healthy eating). Look at the Italian way of eating, it’s not just pizzas, but it’s full of healthy fats and vegetables in abundance. And when you start to think about living a healthy lifestyle, it’s not just about fuelling yourself, it’s about the overall cooking methods. And if you are someone who was never picked up a spatula before, learning how to cook these meals will give you an emotional investment in what you cook. After all, you will have spent the time trying to cook the food, so you will eat it! And as your skills in the kitchen increase, you can begin to look for ways to improve your cooking skills and healthy eating habits, and it becomes a part of your life. Going shopping for this cookware, or those items of tupperware becomes a big part of who you are. And for a lot of people, cooking becomes a therapeutic process. And it’s important to remember that it’s not always about salad, it’s about being creative with your dishes. Adding more color, and different flavours with different spices means that even the most bland vegetable becomes ridiculously tasty!
Make sure you fuel yourself
Part of the reason people give up on a healthy eating regime is because they don’t feel sated enough. People have the misconception that to eat healthily, they have to nibble on a lettuce leaf and eat nothing else for the rest of the day. This isn’t true in the slightest! It’s important that you feel full after eating, but also that you eat the foods that keep you going. You need to have the right amount of energy for your body, and this is why people eat huge plates of salads, but also have it as a side dish to meat and potatoes. And this is where lots of people are going wrong. Yes, portion control is an important part of eating healthily, especially if you are trying to lose weight, but in embarking on a healthy diet, you still need to make sure you have the energy to do your daily tasks. And this is where the whole calories in-calories out misconception comes. But the fact is, your body uses certain calories in different ways, and no one calorie is the same through every different item of food. The leads nicely onto the next item.
Think about how it makes you feel
When we are trapped in a bad way of eating, we don’t realize how bad it makes us feel. When we eat something that our body doesn’t agree with, our body starts to inflame as a way to preserve our body. So, think about your current diet, and if you feel tired a lot, struggle to focus, or get susceptible to illness. One of the reasons people embark on a healthy regime of eating is that it can make them feel so much better than ever before. And this could be due to something simple, like a food intolerance, or just the fact that you’re eating so much processed food, that your body is permanently inflamed.
Remember, a diet implies that it’s temporary. If you want to be healthy, you need to make healthy eating a part of your lifestyle. We need to get out of this mindset of thinking that we just need to eat healthily for a short period of time, and can go back to our old ways. Instead, if you’re serious about getting healthy, look at eating healthily as a way of life.