Let’s face it, our parents were right. “You are what you eat”. Nutrition is what fuels us, it’s what fuels our bodies so we can live our lives to the fullest. We shouldn’t be living to eat, we need to be eating to live.
This is not about dieting. This is about living and making life choices to give you a longer better quality of life. By slowly altering your thinking you can begin the transformation to becoming a healthy eater today! Just follow these 7 Habits of Healthy Eaters and you’re on your way.
- Eat Real Food. Your best food choices are those without labels. Such as avocados, berries, spinach, etc. Additionally, check the ingredients on the products you purchase, the less ingredients, the better.
- Combine Foods for Results. By combining proteins, carbohydrates and fats with your veggies or fruit you increase your bodies ability to burn more body fat. Although, this process of food combining may have a higher calorie count, it takes the body longer to burn your food, keeping you satiated longer.
- Change Daily Choices. These six simple changes can make a huge difference!
- Eat a nutritious breakfast daily. This jump starts your metabolism, helps fights cravings later in the day and gives you the energy to go!
- Try to break down your meals to 5 – 6 smaller meals a day. This method kicks up your metabolism as your body utilizes the food in your system, rather than storing food for later, which can turn into fat.
- Simplify your food swaps. Instead of grabbing a bag of chips, grab a bag of pre-cut peppers, carrots or cucumbers. Turn it into a great snack by grabbing another pre-packed container of 15 almonds!
- Grocery shop every few days to ensure fresher foods and to avoid food spoilage.
- Prepare your food in advance or double your meals for healthy leftovers for the week. Food prep days are essential. Pre-cut veggies, prepackage fruits and nuts, prepackage servings of rice, quinoa, couscous, sweet potatoes, and even cook and prepackage your chicken and fish. This will save you so much time during the week and keep you from making bad choices if you have nothing prepared.
- Meal plan. Have a list of family favorites and modifications or alternatives for those interested in having healthier options. Such as making tacos with rice and beans for the family, but a fish taco salad as a modified lighter option.
- Hydrate. On average we should drink 8 glasses of 8 oz of water a day. One of those cups should be consumed at the start of the day, and one at the end of the day. This is increased on workout days as we loose fluids through perspiration. We should drink 17-20oz of fluids before working out, 7-10oz while working out and 16-24oz after working out – for each pound lost. Additionally, if you consume a full glass of water before each meal you will find yourself less hungry. Also, remember what you drink is just as important as how much you drink. You don’t want to drink your calories (artificial sugars will trick your brain to think its sugar and can trick the brain to think it needs to create fat storage.)
- Don’t Count Calories – Count Quantity.
- Focus on nutrient dense foods. These are foods containing high numbers of nutrients with a low caloric count. Spinach, almonds, berries, beans, asparagus, kale and salmon are just a few super foods full of much needed nutrients.
- Focus on clean eating. This basically means foods that have been minimally processed, like whole wheat breads and pastas, unrefined grains, steel cut oats, meats that are unprocessed, and preferably wild, dairy that is free of hormones, fresh fruits and fresh vegetables.
- Don’t overestimate your exercise by thinking you did all that so you can eat all this!
- Don’t underestimate your food. Too much bad food will make you gain weight, period.
- Don’t Obsess – Try to live by the 80/20 Rule each week. That is, 80% of the time you make good choices and 20% of the time indulge in some cheat foods. Believe it or not, this will help you stay on track. Also, listen to your body, it will tell you what you need to do. If you are hungry have a healthy snack, if you are full, stop eating. Finally, don’t eat fast. Take your time and enjoy your food.
- Get Plenty of Sleep. Sleep is necessary for our muscles to grow and for our bodies to heal, repair and recharge.
So start making healthy nutritional lifestyle choices today that will fuel your body with the nutrients you need to strengthen and energize your life.
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Thank you – Michelle