A good diet is a vital part of health and human development. Healthy meals give you energy and provide your body with the necessary nutrients to fight diseases. The World Health Organization (WHO) has revealed that better nutrition is key to good health across all ages.
Are you looking to eat a healthier diet but don’t know where to start? Here are 8 tips that you can practice to begin your foray into a world of healthy eating.
How fast you eat plays a critical role in your food consumption and overall body weight. Various studies which compared eating pace revealed that people who eat faster are likely to eat more than slow eaters. These people are also expected to have a higher body mass index than their counterparts.
Your appetite and how much food you eat are controlled by hormones. However, it may take some time for these hormones to signal to your brain that you’re full. Therefore, you may eat more than your body requires before you realize it.
Although salt can make your meals tastier, its intake comes with quite a few negatives, especially when consumed in high portions. For starters, eating too much salt can cause your blood pressure to rise.
Research has also found links between sodium, the primary component of table salt, and cardiovascular diseases. Adults and children above 11 should avoid eating more than 6g of salt daily.
Even if you don’t add salt to your meals, your intake may still be high if you eat it in snacks and the food you buy. Do not eat any packaged food with more than 1.5g salt per 100g.
The importance of protein in your everyday diet cannot be overlooked. It is regarded as the most filling among the macronutrients due to its influence on satiety hormones and satisfaction.
A review confirmed that meals rich in protein decreased levels of hunger hormone, ghrelin, better than high-carb foods in overweight people.
In addition, protein may contribute to an improved physical structure by helping you retain body mass and burn calories. Other studies indicate that this macronutrient may be beneficial for people with diabetes.
Everything you have heard about water being greatly beneficial for your health is true. Many studies have revealed that drinking more water can help you maintain optimum weight and increase the number of calories you burn every day.
The Institute of Medicine of the National Academies has advised that you drink about 2.7 liters of water daily. You can also take low-fat milk and lower-sugar drinks to supplement your water intake.
That said, avoid sugary soft drinks and alcohol, which may lead to kidney and heart disease. Remember to drink even more fluids on hot days or while exercising.
Green Leafy vegetables are highly nutritious, and incorporating them into your diet provides various health perks. Research shows that people who eat more greens are less likely to suffer from chronic diseases.
Since most vegetables are low in calories, they may be useful in lowering your calorie intake. These greens also contain high levels of fiber and potassium, both crucial nutrients missing in the diet of many Americans.
In addition, the CDC reports that nearly 50% of Americans have high blood pressure. Potassium-rich foods may reduce the risk of high B.P.
Just like vegetables, everyone knows that fruits are incredibly beneficial as they come packed with water, vitamins, fiber, and various antioxidants. Multiple studies have found links between eating fruits and reduced risk of chronic diseases such as cancer, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease.
Due to their high fiber content, the sugar in fruits is digested slowly, helping you avoid major spikes in blood sugar levels.
Do not replace fruits with packaged fruit juices because they are made of concentrate and sugar rather than actual fruit. Even natural fruit juices can spike your blood sugar levels because they lack fiber and are easier to chew. Therefore you may consume more in one sitting.
Changing the way your food is made can alter its effects on your health. Grilling and frying are among the most common cooking methods. However, these methods form toxic compounds such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in foods. Health experts have linked these compounds to dangerous conditions such as heart disease, stroke, and cancer.
Some healthy cooking methods that you can try out include:
Preparing your meals at home allows you to control the ingredients and reduce the amount of salt you consume. It also allows you to better estimate the amount of nutrients and calories you take in, reaching your recommended daily intake faster.
If you must eat out, change your favorite fast food restaurant to a more health-focused one. Many healthy restaurants offer healthy food at a reasonable price.
As you begin your journey to a healthier diet, remember that you can’t do it all at once. Completely altering your diet has its consequences. Instead, focus on making the small changes like the ones listed here. Also, don’t forget to exercise and reduce stress because eating right is just one part of a healthy lifestyle.