5 Effective Tips in Developing Healthy Eating Habits
Almost everyone has very strong habits as far as eating is concerned. Some of these habits are good while others are bad. It is important to retain and further improve the good and let go of the bad if you are one of those who want to start focusing more on health and fitness.
Fortunately, even if most of your eating habits were already ingrained in your system from childhood, you can still change them to healthier ones anytime. Here’s what you can do to start developing healthy eating habits that you can easily stick to for life:
Determine your bad eating habits – You have to accept the fact that some habits you have actually encourage unhealthy eating. By accepting that fact, you can improve the way you eat for the better.
For instance, if you have the habit of eating too fast, then it is time to remind yourself that your brain takes up to twenty minutes to recognize that your body already has enough food. You can then change that habit by starting to eat slowly and savoring your food, so you won’t end up overeating.
Other bad eating habits you may want to correct are excessively loading your plate with foods every mealtime, skipping meals, and eating only a single type of food. By knowing your unwanted and unhealthy eating habits, you can find ways to target the problem and correct it.
Replace unhealthy eating habits with healthy ones
After determining your unhealthy and bad eating habits, it is time to cultivate good ones, so you can replace them right away. For instance, you can start practicing portion eating or staying away from unhealthy processed and junk foods.
You should also start to avoid skipping meals or unnecessary snacking. Your goal, therefore, is to look for healthy counterparts of your bad and unhealthy eating habits. Some examples would be:
- Replacing sugar-filled cookies and pies with fresh and healthy fruits
- Making sure that you are really hungry before snacking
- Consuming a minimum of three healthy and varied foods every meal
- Setting a schedule for your meals
- Eating slowly and savoring your foods
- Sticking to reasonable portions
- Stopping yourself from eating more once you feel full
Educate yourself about healthy and unhealthy foods – That way, you will know exactly which ones to include in your diet and which ones to avoid. Among your best sources of information would be reliable nutrition websites, nutrition books, and a dietician.
It is also advisable for you to educate yourself about the specific ingredients to stay away from. By being well-informed about the components of different kinds of food, you can remove the unhealthy ones from your diet and retain only those that are good for you.
Make sure you are eating five to six balanced meals every day – It should include a healthy breakfast, lunch, dinner, as well as two to three healthy snacks every day. Instead of starving yourself, stick to small portions every meal and commit to the five to six times eating frequency. Your meals should also consist of healthy foods, including those rich in protein, as well as fruits, veggies, starch, and grain.
Practice mindfulness when eating
This means paying close attention to what and when you eat. You should then tap into your feelings and behaviors when surrounded by certain foods. Before reaching out for food, be one hundred percent sure that you are hungry.
Find out your major motivator every time you are tempted to eat something. Is it boredom, tiredness, anger, or stress? Make sure that you don’t give in to the urge to eat unless it is already your scheduled mealtime or you are truly hungry. It is necessary to be extra mindful of your eating environment, too.
Moreover, you can further develop healthy eating habits and stick to them for a lifetime if you set a goal and constantly remind yourself of it. For instance, if your goal is to reach a specific weight, then remind yourself about your target every day, especially during those times when you feel like you are already losing motivation. By setting a goal for sticking to healthy eating habits, you will most likely be able to ingrain them into your life.
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