Good nutrition is one of the keys to a healthy lifestyle. What we eat affects our energy levels, our moods, our ability to fight off disease…the list goes on. That’s why it’s so important to make sure we’re fueling our bodies with the right kind of nourishment. Although it may seem daunting at first, making sustainable choices doesn’t have to be complicated or time-consuming. But with all the conflicting information out there, it can be hard to know what changes to make.
Never fear – we’re in this together, and I’ve done the necessary research to take the guesswork out of it and get you started on the right track.
First, let’s dispel some common myths about healthy eating. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to go broke buying organic produce, and you don’t have to give up all your favorite foods in order to be healthy.
In fact, Experts say that the best way to eat healthy is to focus on consuming more whole foods – that is, foods that are minimally processed and free of additives – and less processed foods.
Another misconception is that eating healthy means having to cook all your meals from scratch. While it’s true that cooking at home gives you more control over what goes into your food, there are plenty of healthy frozen and prepackaged meals that make eating healthy a breeze.
Recent studies have found that even small positive shifts can result in major health benefits and potentially add years to your life.
Examples of simple shifts include adding nuts as a snack or cutting back on processed meats. You don’t need drastic changes – just taking small steps can lead to improvements in overall wellbeing.
Even if you’re over 60, it’s possible to jumpstart your health and make lasting improvements with just a few dietary changes.
Once we have a good understanding of what foods are nutritious and how much we should be eating, we can start making changes to our diet.
Now that we’ve got that out of the way, here are five healthy nutritional habits you can start today.
Table of Contents
- Eat Breakfast
- Make Time for Meals
- Eat Mindfully
- Stay Hydrated
- Limit Processed Foods
1. Eat Breakfast
We’ve all heard the saying “breakfast is the most important meal of the day,” and there’s a reason for that. When we sleep, our bodies are in a fasted state for anywhere from 6-8 hours (or more!). So, when we wake up, we need to replenish our bodies with some fuel to start the day off right.
Skipping breakfast can lead to low energy levels, poor concentration, and even weight gain. Additionally, you might be more inclined to choose unhealthful foods later in the day so be sure to start your day with a nutritious meal or snack.
So if you’re looking to cut calories, don’t skip breakfast. Instead, start your day with a nutritious meal or snack that will give you the energy you need to get through the day.
2. Make Time for Meals
In today’s fast-paced world, it’s easy to let mealtimes slide in favor of work or other commitments. But if you want to maintain good nutrition, it’s important to make time for regular meals.
Planning ahead can help make sure you’re getting the nutrients your body needs. Set aside time each week to cook and prep meals so you always have something healthy on hand. And if cooking isn’t your thing, there are plenty of healthy prepared foods out there that can make meeting your nutritional goals a breeze.
For example, you can find pre-cut vegetables and fruits at most supermarkets, which makes it easy to add them to your meals. There are also many healthy prepared meals available at most grocery stores, such as roasted chicken breasts, quinoa salads, and vegetable stir-fries.
If you’re looking for something more specific, there are also many online ordering options that can deliver healthy meals right to your door.
So don’t let the thought of cooking discourage you from eating healthy – there are plenty of Prepared foods out there that can make meeting your nutritional goals easy and delicious!
3. Eat Mindfully
Paying attention to your eating habits is one of the best things you can do for your health. That means being mindful of both what you’re eating and how much you’re eating.
One way to coax your body into feeling fuller faster is to eat mindfully. When we’re not paying attention, it’s easy to eat more than we realize—and that can lead to weight gain and other health problems down the road.
So next time you sit down for a meal, take a few deep breaths and really focus on your food. When you are present while you’re eating and tuned in to your hunger cues, you are more likely to feel satisfied with less food. More food doesn’t always translate into more satisfaction. In fact, paying attention to what you’re eating can help you feel more satisfied with less.
The next time you eat, give these suggestions a try to see if they can make you feel fuller more quickly.
4. Stay Hydrated
Staying hydrated is crucial for good health, yet many of us don’t drink enough water throughout the day. Aim to drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water per day—more if you exercise frequently or are exposed to hot weather or dry conditions.
What are important hydration facts you need to know?
Being hydrated is essential for maintaining a healthy body and mind! Proper hydration helps to keep you cool, your joints limber, and your organs performing at their best. It’s also key for providing cells with necessary nutrients – plus it can improve sleep quality, mental performance and even lift moods. So make sure you drink up!
If plain water isn’t your thing, try infusing it with fruit or herbs for flavor without adding sugar or calories.
5. Limit Processed Foods
As I stated earlier, focusing on eating more whole foods, or foods that are minimally processed and devoid of additives, is considered by experts to be the best way to eat healthily. The thinking behind this is that whole foods are more likely to be nutrient-dense and packed with essential vitamins and minerals, while processed foods tend to be high in calories, unhealthy fats, and added sugars.
Eating too many processed foods can lead to nutritional deficiencies, weight gain, high blood pressure, and other health problems. To promote good health, limit processed foods as much as possible in favor of fresh whole foods.
Of course, completely eliminating processed foods from your diet can be daunting – and let’s face it, not always realistic. But if you’re looking to make some healthier eating choices, cutting back on processed foods is a great place to start.
So, these are just a few small changes you can make to create healthier eating habits. By focusing on nutritious whole foods, drinking enough water every day, and being mindful of your portion sizes, you’ll be well on your way to improved health in no time!
Small steps lead to big changes – so why not give one (or all) of these tips a try?
I’d love to hear about your experiences implementing them into your daily routine, so please leave me a comment below. Thanks for reading!