Everyone has tried a diet to lose weight or stay healthy, but often they never work. Once stopping the diet the weight just bounces back on. Why is this? Mainly because all the wacky and wonderful diets are not sustainable. They are either nutritionally incomplete (cabbage soup, juice diet, detox diet) or you can not follow them long term without affecting your lifestyle (dukan diet, 5:2 diet).
Everyone wants a quick fix and be just like the celebrities, but lets face it, the celebrities have the time and money to spend on personal trainers and spend hours in the gym or they have just been air brushed!
Unfortunately people see healthy eating as boring and non-glamorous. Well we need to change our attitude and approach and get healthy before overweight becomes normal. Healthy eating should be a way of life, not a short lived diet.
Here are my tips for healthy eating
- Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. The good stuff – high in vitamins and minerals and fibre and low in calories. Can protect us against some cancers and heart disease. Keeps our bowels regular! Ensure some veg or salad and/or fruit at each meal, aiming for 5 portions a day. Chose a variety over the day. Ensure plenty of veg or salad on your plate for your meals, so that you can decrease your carbs portion on your plate without feeling hungry.
- Watch your portion sizes. Everything in the shops has now been supersizes – beware! Crisps and chocolate are double the size they used to be. Watch your carb portions on your plate. You need carbs at each meal for energy and B vitamins, but too much can increase your weight. Read the food packet and weigh out your food to make sure you are eating the recommended portion and no more. Fill up with vegetables and salad.
- Plan your healthy snacks so you are not tempted to go to the vending machine or shops for crisps and chocolate! If you need a snack in between meals then choose and plan healthy snacks – fruit, bananas are good for filling you up. Small portion of nuts (unsalted and unsweetened), veg sticks (carrots, mushrooms, peppers, sugar snap peas) and dip.
- Avoid sweet and fizzy drinks. Full of sugar and calories with no other nutrients. Choose just water, fizzy water with slice of lemon, sugar free squash if you want taste. Cut down and out the sugar in your tea and coffee.
- Choose wholegrain carbs. Wholegrain / multi seeded bread. Brown or basmati rice. Try brown pasta. Whole grain cereal. These will fill you up for longer and help control your appetite.
- Plan and eat breakfast. The most important meal of the day. Make time for breakfast and make it exciting. Avoid the sugary breakfast cereals, choose wholegrain, unsweetened varieties. Add plain / Greek yoghurt and chopped berries / fruit on top. Porridge – make with rolled oats and add fruit while cooking for variety e.g. banana, blueberries, apricots, raisins and then you don’t need to add sugar. Boiled egg and wholegrain soldiers, poached egg on muffin / toast and fruit.
- Avoid ready meals and cook from scratch. It is better to know what is in your meals, you can control the amount of sugar and salt. People often complained they don’t have time to cook. I have 2 little children and work part time and I (nearly) always cook from scratch. If you can’t do it every day. They cook in double amounts and save / freeze the extra meals in preparation for busy days.
- Distraction. If you just sit in front of the tele all evening you will think about food and think you are hungry. Distract yourself with hobbies, sport, catching up with friends. This way you will forget about food until it is time for a meal.
That will do for now! Most of all, enjoy your healthy food.