15 Healthy Eating Tips
There are tons of ways to eat healthier, including these healthy eating tips.
Even something as small as eating an extra serving of vegetables a day can have a positive impact on your health.
Many people don’t realize that small changes matter because they don’t see an immediate effect, or just don’t notice anything different by just eating a vegetable. And while you may not notice anything obvious, your body is doing a happy dance.
Every healthy choice you make, your walking in the right direction. Soon, these healthy eating tips will get easier and easier. And you’ll feel amazing and wonder why it took you so long to make these changes!
Here are some of the best healthy eating tips!
Protein has been proven time and time again, in support of a healthy weight. It builds and repairs muscle, and has been shown to assist in fat burning.
Other benefits include:
- Lowers blood pressure
- Curbs cravings
- Boosts the immune system
- Keeps hair, nails, and bones healthy
- Lowers diabetes risk
Be sure to choose lean proteins, such as skinless chicken and turkey, lean beef, or fish.
Choose baked over fried.
When dining out, or even at home, baked foods are the way to go.
Fried foods are linked to premature death and cardiovascular disease. This is mostly due to trans fats, which are in partially hydrogenated vegetable oils. These oils are probably what your food is cooked in when you eat out.
Baked foods are a much healthier option since they’re not drenched in unhealthy cooking oils. They might be drizzled with a healthier oil, like olive oil, which we will discuss in a bit.
Eat your fruits.
Fruit is packed with healthy fiber, so you should always choose to eat fruit than to only drink its juice. When you choose juice, you’re choosing more sugar than in the fruit.
It takes around 3 apples to make one 8 ounce cup of juice.
So would you eat 3 apples at once? Probably not. The juice is most likely watered down, but still, always choose the fruit over juice. Nutrients should always win.
Fill up on veggies.
Vegetables hold tons of nutrients, vitamins, minerals, and fiber, so it’s obvious why you should be eating them.
Snack on veggies, fill half of your plate with veggies at dinner, blend them into your smoothies.
- They’ll help you feel fuller longer. (Less snacking)
- They fight and ward off disease.
- They will make your skin glow.
- They’ll help you lose weight.
Stay away from diet foods.
When I say diet foods I’m talking about the supposedly “healthy” fat free or reduced fat foods.
Fats have been avoided for quite some time because it was believed that fat makes you fat and unhealthy. Thankfully, that information has started to change somewhat thanks to diets like keto.
Diet foods contain much more ingredients that most people can’t even pronounce. These foods are more processed because things have to be removed (like fat).
And most often, the fat is replaced with sugar. It has to still taste good right?
Choose healthier cooking oils.
Oils like olive oil, avocado oil, and coconut oil are all healthy choices.
Coconut oil is very high in saturated fat and should be used in moderation. However, this makes it great for cooking with high heat due to its high smoke point.
Avocado and olive oil are high in monounsaturated fat, which is a good heart-healthy fat.
Reduce sugar intake.
Everyone knows that a diet high in sugar can lead to many health problems, but what many people don’t know is how many of their foods are loaded with sugar.
So many foods have added sugars in them, and you wouldn’t be able to tell a difference!
Pay attention to your food labels and see what sugars are added versus natural sugars.
Cutting back on sugar will reduce your risk of diseases, like diabetes.
Keep healthy snacks on hand.
Nuts, fruit, cheese, vegetables, whole grain crackers, etc.
Make sure healthy snacks are readily available when you’re feeling snackish.
- Cut up veggies and fruits for the week to grab and go.
- Portion out your nuts, crackers, cheese, etc in individual bags or containers.
- Make things easier on yourself ahead of time, hello meal prep!
Being prepared prevents grabbing a bag of chips or candy bar from the convenience store.
Complex carbs over simple carbs.
We get our energy from carbohydrates, and they’re either complex or simple.
Simple carbs are sugars from candies, juices, corn syrup, and other types of sugar (like table sugar). Simple carbs cause your blood sugar to spike quickly. That sugar high has to end eventually, leading to a crash. That’s why you feel so tired after eating a lot of sweets.
Complex carbs are whole grains, like breads, potatoes, beans, pasta, and rice. Your body takes longer to digest these carbs and your blood sugar rises much more slowly. They also keep you fuller longer, which will help prevent excess snacking.
Eat less processed foods.
Processed foods are loaded with chemicals. Well, most of them. Some foods like pre-cut vegetables are slightly processed, but that’s not what most people think about when they hear the words processed foods. Examples like this are mechanical processing, which is totally acceptable.
Chemical processing is what we should avoid. Highly processed foods are linked to multiple health issues such as, heart disease, diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, etc. The list goes on.
It’s best to choose foods that are minimally processed as often as possible. I know, sometimes you get in a pinch and end up eating a frozen pizza, but eating processed foods once in a blue moon is much better than daily.
Choose fast foods wisely.
Sometimes life gets hectic. Sometimes you might end up swinging by the drive through for dinner. And that’s okay. But make sure you choose the best foods for you.
- Check out the menu ahead of time if you can.
- Order a grilled meats instead of fried.
- Choose a side salad over fries.
- Avoid salad dressings loaded with chemicals, choose oil and vinegar if you can.
- Water over soda.
Don’t drink sugary drinks.
Our bodies don’t need lots of sugar. No, you don’t need that Coke to make it through the afternoon. You need water. You need a healthy diet, without added sugars.
Steer clear of empty calories, aka, sugar filled drinks. They contain absolutely zero nutrition, and do nothing for you other than taste good and give you a temporary sugar high. Oh, and they contribute to fat gain.
Stick to water. If you absolutely must drink a soda (I understand I was addicted to diet soda for years!) limit them to once a day.
Need help with getting all of your water? Here are 10 Tips to Drink More Water!
Choose whole grains.
Always choose whole grains over refined grains. They’re less processed and overall a healthier choice.
- Whole grains are high in fiber and therefore keep your digestive system regular.
- They can reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease and high blood pressure.
- They can keep your blood sugar levels stable.
- Whole grains can help you lose weight.
Purchase products that say 100% whole grain on the package. Packages that say “made with whole grains” are usually only part whole grain, not 100%, so it’s best to skip those products.
Learn appropriate portion sizes.
Portion sizes have gotten way out of hand in the United States. The average restaurant meal contains around 1200 calories, and the portions are huge. That’s not too far off from a whole days worth of calories (depending on your caloric intake) in just a single meal.
- Meats: around 3-4oz, the size of your palm.
- Grains: cereals should be 1 cup, the size of your fist. Bread should be 1 slice, the size of your palm. Noodles or rice should be ½ cup, around a handful.
- Cheese: 1.5 oz, the size of your finger.
- Milk: 1 cup (8 oz).
- Fruit should be around a cup, or a piece of fruit, like an apple.
- Vegetables should be unlimited in my opinion, but aim for at least 1 cup.
So you see these portion sizes are much smaller than the portions you receive while eating out. More food = more body fat.
Treat yourself in moderation.
I don’t think you should completely cut out your favorite foods when you’re trying to get healthier. Just limit them.
- If you’re a chocoholic, eat a square after dinner every day. Or treat yourself to a chocolate bar every week.
- Love chips? Get a small bag from the convenience store once a week.
- Go out for ice cream weekly with your family.
You’ll stay less crazy when you incorporate your favorite foods into your diet.
Ready for more tips? Check out Health Habits You Can Start Right Now!
These healthy eating tips will have you heading in the right direction. Being healthy is easier than you think, even though the thought of making so many changes in your diet can be daunting. Try to make a change or two per week. This will ease you into a healthy lifestyle and make it much more sustainable.
Which of these healthy eating tips have you tried today? Let me know in the comments!