Transform Your Eating Habits with these Easy Tips.
Eating right can control weight and reduce your risk of chronic diseases such as obesity, heart disease, diabetes and stroke. Even losing just a few pounds can benefit your health. Make smart choices to adopt an overall healthier eating plan. A well-balanced diet provides energy to keep you active through your day.
Not sure where to start? Eating healthy does not have to be complicated or expensive. There is a lot of information on how to eat healthy and we understand it sometimes can feel like too much to think about. Healthy eating starts with consciously making healthy food choices. You do not need to be a chef to create healthy meals. Good nutrition is about having a well-rounded diet. Here are some tips to eating healthy in a way that’s easy to understand.
Try These 5 Simple Tips When Planning Your Next Meal
1. SHOPPING TIP
Plan meals to include different colored vegetables throughout the week. Be sure to include vegetables from all five vegetable subgroups to mix up the nutrients and vitamins you can get from each group – dark-green, starchy, red-orange, beans and peas and other vegetables. Most vegetables are low in calories and fat. Vegetables are rich in potassium which will decrease bone loss. Keep meals simple and economical. Shopping Tip: Buy fresh vegetables in season since they cost less.
2. FOCUS ON WHOLE FRUITS
Choose fruit not only as your snack but try it for dessert instead of sugary sweets. Make most of your choices whole or cut-up fruit rather than juice to ensure you are getting the dietary fiber they provide. Most fruits are low in calories, sodium and fat. Fruits provide various nutrients such as vitamins C and A and folate as well as dietary fiber and potassium. Cooking Tip: Use fruits to sweeten a recipe instead of adding sugar.
3. MAKE HALF YOUR GRAINS WHOLE GRAINS
Try brown rice instead of white and whole grain bread for sandwiches. Shopping tip: Look for words “100% whole grain” or “100 whole wheat” on the food label. Whole grains provide more nutritional value such as fiber than refined grains. Cooking Tip: Cook extra brown rice when you have time to meal prep for the work week. Refrigerate half the portion and serve later as a side dish or in a salad.
4. VARY YOUR PROTEIN ROUTINE
Protein foods include both animal (meat, poultry, eggs and seafood) and plant (beans, nuts, peas, soy products and seeds) sources. Vary your protein food choices and eat plant protein foods more often. Adding plant-based proteins into the rotation, like chickpeas, lentils, red and black beans, quinoa, tofu and almonds will help with fiber intake. Plant-based proteins are naturally low in saturated fat and high in fiber. Meal Prep Tip: Add a half cup of beans or peas to your salad plate to add texture, flavor and fiber.
5. MEAL PREP TIP
Make low-fat or fat-free milk or yogurt part of your meal. Dairy products provide calcium, vitamin D, potassium and protein. These nutrients work together to strengthen our bones and teeth. When milk products are adequately consumed they can decrease your risk of osteoporosis, a condition where bones become brittle and weak. For those who are lactose-intolerant, then choose lactose-free alternatives. Meal Prep Tip: Try adding fresh fruit to plain low-fat yogurt for breakfast instead of buying the flavored/sweetened variety.
Want more info or tips like these? Contact WellSpark Health at 877.224.7350 or [email protected].
Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, http://eatright.org
United States Department of Agriculture, https://www.myplate.gov/
The information provided is NOT intended to be medical advice and should not be treated as a substitute for professional medical advice and care. Contact your physician when seeking any medical advice.