Healthy Eating Equals a Healthy You

Healthy eating is a lifelong habit. It’s not about crash diets

Today we are all aware of the pitfalls of harmful eating habits. However, most of us think about losing weight only through dieting. Instead, what we need to do is to combine healthy eating habits with exercise. Healthy eating does not mean that you have to drastically cut back on the food you enjoy. It just means that you need to replace fat and cholesterol-laden ingredients with healthier options and eat a balanced diet. Given below are some tips for healthy eating.

Kick-start your day with breakfast. Breakfast is, without doubt, the most important meal of the day and if you usually give it a miss, then it is time to include it. Forget the excuse that you don’t have time. Make time to grab something – a couple of fruits, some cereal, a sandwich, idlis…anything. Breakfast helps energize and prepare us for the hours ahead and a nutritious first meal is like a powerhouse that fuels your brain and muscles.

Eat an assortment of nutrient-rich foods. Today many of us are tempted to gorge on fast food. Pizzas and burgers may be delicious but they provide very little nutrition and just add on the calories. You need a healthy combo of carbs, proteins and fats and definitely fiber.

Add whole grains, fruits and vegetables. Eat healthy helpings of these. Make sure that you have lots of vegetables with your rice or chappati. And forego the oil-laden parathas. Substitute white bread for multigrain or whole-wheat bread.

shutterstock_361244960Eat moderate portions. Most often, we put on weight because we eat more than we require. If you keep portion sizes reasonable, it’s easier to eat the foods you want and stay healthy. Drink a glass of water half an hour before your meal; it will fill you up and prevent you from overeating. Serve yourself small portions and eat slowly, chewing on your food.

Eat regular meals. Skipping meals can lead to out-of-control hunger, which often results in overeating. This is especially the case when you are at work. You are then tempted to order some fattening food! When you’re very hungry, you forget about good nutrition! Eating regular meals will also cut down the urge to snack in between.

 If you can’t cut out, cut down. If you can’t bear the thought of cutting out favorites like chocolate and French fries, then at least aim to cut down. The key is moderation. If you are used to tucking into dessert after dinner, attempt to change the habit to having dessert after dinner only on weekends. If you love fried foods, you don’t have to give it up. Just eat it less often.

Drink lots of water.  It makes up approximately two-thirds of our body weight and is essential for regulating our bodily processes. Water will fill your stomach up and reduce your craving for extra food.

Make changes gradually. Don’t try to revamp your eating habits overnight. Make gradual changes, otherwise you may be tempted to return to your old habits! Cut down on fattening foods over a period of time; find substitutes for oil-rich dishes, etc.

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Vinita Nayar
Dogs, books, music…that’s what makes life tick for me. And of course, writing. I’ve been writing for 17 years now and have enjoyed every bit of it. My idea of a great time – blast some music, cuddle my pets and gorge on pizza. Or curl up in a cozy corner with a good book. That’s bliss. And now, I’ve discovered a new bliss – yoga. Maybe, I’ll turn spiritual some day with a halo around my head! On a more serious note, I’m actively involved in animal welfare and saving abandoned dogs. I firmly believe dogs are much better than most human beings. In addition, I champion the cause of making our planet a better place. And do my bit in whatever way I can, and urge everyone to do the same.