Eating right might seem very complicated, but actually, it’s all about balance. Many people decide to go on a strict diet and then give up after some time, which results in gaining weight they previously lost. The point is in eliminating the wrong foods and sticking to what’s good for us. If you’ve been struggling to achieve a balanced diet, here are some suggestions on what you should and shouldn’t do:
1. Moderation is the key
Before we go any further, we should first learn about exercising self-control. You can have the best diet plan presented to you, but if you’re not well versed in discipline, it’s not going to last. You’ll eat healthy for a couple of weeks, before you relapse and go back to junk food. Establishing a balanced diet is the first step, but learning about your own needs is the second most important. Also, treating yourself should be an option as it gives you a sense of accomplishment. If you feel like grabbing that Snickers bar, go for it, but make sure you eat only one. Refraining yourself from stuff you used to eat regularly is difficult so that’s why it’s recommended to give in to your temptation once in a while, not only for yourself, but for others as well. Eating that piece of cake at your friend’s birthday party won’t harm your progress, but will make you feel good about yourself and your friend will be happy, too.
2. Liquids are important
We’re told that we should drink at least 8 glasses of water a day, but that doesn’t make it automatically good for you. In fact, your liquid intake should be based on your daily routine, your weight and the foods you ate that day. Soup, herbal teas, healthy smoothies and milk count as liquids. What you should avoid are alcohol and soda drinks. Having a glass of wine during dinner is fine, just make sure you stay on one glass. When it comes to sugary fizzy drinks, if you can’t stay away from them, at least try to limit your consumption to one can a week, preferably less. Every time you feel like having a sip, have a glass of water with a few slices of lemon instead.
3. Set up a routine
Whenever we start a new diet, we tend to throw out all the unhealthy snacks and replace them with organic/healthy stuff we’ve previously bought in a frenzy, hoping that our enthusiasm will last long enough for us to eat them all and lose weight in the process. Unfortunately, as great as that sounds, that type of behaviour isn’t uncommon. Instead of acting a bit irrational, sit down and have a chat with yourself (or a nutritionist) and try learning what your pain points are. Is it too much alcohol? Or late night munching? Whatever the problem, the first step to getting rid of it is to know it. Only after that can you work on other stuff. In case you’re too busy to do it by yourself, there are many services that offer affordable and healthy meal plans that can also be delivered straight to your doorstep. That way, you can learn more about food preparation and eating properly. It’s also important to eat all your meals at approximately the same time. Breakfast is crucial, since it’s the first meal we eat, so it’s not advisable to skip it. Pay attention to the time period between your meals. It’s always recommended eating your next meal five hours after the previous one.
4. Diversify what you eat
Every time we’re told about healthy eating habits, fruits and vegetables are on the top of every list. While that’s true, having only a plant-based diet won’t be enough to sustain you for longer periods of time. Instead, you should eat as many foods as possible, but be careful about what you consume. Eating red meat, chicken breasts, beans, grains, nuts, plant-based milk and healthy oils will help you stay fit and feel better. Even though sweets are tasty, they don’t actually improve anything. Instead, opt for fruits and vegan cakes as they often contain healthy ingredients. Reducing the amount of carbs is also recommended, as carbs are often high in sugar, so instead of bread, have a healthy replacement which is also nutritional and tasty.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Claire Hastings is a wanderer and a writer. She writes as long as she can remember, and she is very passionate about fashion, running, other cultures, and her cat.
Follow Claire on Twitter @claireahastings