Here's my Top Ten Healthy Eating Tips
1. Eat breakfast daily.
Eating a meal of complex carbohydrates, proteins, and healthy fats at the beginning of your day can rev up your metabolism and give you fuel for an active day.
Here are some additional benefits:
Improves Ability to Control Weight: According to the American Dietetic Association, eating breakfast can help you with your weight goals. This is because when you eat breakfast, you are less likely to overeat later in the day.
Improves Ability to Concentrate: Children who eat breakfast have shown greater improvements in standardized test scores and increased ability to concentrate in class; they also are more alert and creative. Likewise, adults are better able to perform in an office or work environment if they have taken the time to eat breakfast.
Improves Overall Nutrition: Eating breakfast improves the total daily nutrient intake. A healthy breakfast should contain some protein and some fiber. Protein can come from low fat meats, eggs, beans or dairy. Fiber can be found in whole grains, vegetables and fruits. A good example of a healthy breakfast might be something simple like a hardboiled egg, an orange, and a bowl of whole grain cereal with low fat milk.
2. Focus on fruit and Vegetables
You should go for color and variety; dark green, orange, red, and yellow. Different colors of fruits and vegetables provide different nutrients making it important for you to include a variety of different colored fruits and vegetables in your diet.
According to the Harvard School of Public health eating plenty of vegetables and fruits can help you ward off heart disease and stroke, control blood pressure, prevent some types of cancer, avoid a painful intestinal ailment called diverticulitis, and guard against cataract and macular degeneration, two common causes of vision loss.
3. Go lean with protein.
There are nine essential amino acids, which constitute the building blocks of protein.
Eating high-quality sources of protein have the following health benefits:
Repairs body cells
Builds and repair muscles, bones, skin, nails and hair
Support immune function
Develops and maintain organ function
Controls many of the important processes in the body related to metabolism
Good Sources of Lean Protein
Chicken and Turkey
Beef (choose lean cuts)
4. Eat whole-grains rather than refined grains
According to the United States Department of Agriculture, eating foods rich in fiber, such as whole grains (for example: oatmeal, 100% whole wheat bread, and brown rice) , can help lower your risk of heart disease. Refined grains, such as white bread and white rice, act like sugar in the body. Eating too many refined grains can raise the risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
5. Avoid Processed Food
In our busy world, it is way too easy to reach for processed foods for a quick lunch or dinner. Many processed foods are made with trans-fats, saturated fats, and large amounts of sodium and sugar. These types of foods should be avoided, or at least be eaten sparingly.
Studies suggest that eating processed meats may increase your risk of colorectal, kidney and stomach cancer. Processed meats include hot dogs, bologna, sausage, ham and other packaged lunch meats.
An alternative to processed foods is using leftovers or preparing quick meals and freezing them for later.
6. Plan your meals a week or a month ahead of time
Come on, you plan for every other aspect of your life, why wouldn’t you plan what you eat? You are going to eat dinner, so why not plan for it. Asking or thinking about dinner ideas at 4:00 pm is too late. If you really want to eat healthy and save money, you need to create a menu plan. When creating a menu plan, make sure to include vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and a healthy protein. Studies show that by planning your meals ahead of time, you tend to eat healthier and save money.
7. Go grocery shopping prepared.
When you head to the supermarket, bring a shopping list. It is too easy to purchase items you didn't plan on buying or forget important ingredients, so bring a list.
8. Shop the perimeter.
Most grocery stores utilize a standard layout and place their produce, meat, and dairy products along the perimeter of the store. You will want to do most of your shopping in this area. Be careful around the Frozen and General Grocery aisles, they contain high priced, high sodium, and low quality processed foods.
9. Eat Smart Fats
Did you know dietary fat is one of the three macronutrients, along with protein and carbohydrates that provide energy for your body? Fat is an important part of your healthy diet because it supports many of your body’s functions.
You don't need to completely eliminate all fat from your diet, you just need to understand the difference between good and bad fat and reduce or eliminate the bad fat from your diet.
Saturated Fat - Saturated Fat raises total blood cholesterol levels and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol levels, which can increase your risk of cardiovascular disease. Saturated fat may also increase your risk of type 2 diabetes.
Trans Fat - Trans Fat can increase unhealthy LDL cholesterol and lower healthy high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol. This can increase your risk of cardiovascular disease.
Monounsaturated fat. Studies show that eating foods rich in monounsaturated fats improves blood cholesterol levels and may benefit insulin levels and blood sugar control, which can be especially helpful if you have type 2 diabetes.
Polyunsaturated fat. Studies show that eating foods rich in polyunsaturated fats improves blood cholesterol levels, which can decrease your risk of heart disease. Polyunsaturated Fats may also help decrease the risk of type 2 diabetes.
10. Choose Your Carbohydrates Carefully
A balanced diet, especially one that supports regular exercise requires carbohydrates. You should include small portions of complex carbohydrates (ones that are slowly digested) in your diet, preferably eaten with protein. As a rule of thumb anything that has been processed (simple carbohydrates) or tastes sweet should be avoided if possible. Bear in mind that foods such as white processed bread or pasta can raise blood sugar and insulin levels (upsetting blood sugar control) as quickly as eating biscuits or cakes. Eat as natural as possible with plenty of fiber and try to avoid anything that isn't as it was grown.