Many of us want to eat healthier but changing your entire diet can be difficult or impossible for many reasons. Thankfully, there are ways to improve your diet that are a little easier than changing everything at once.
Keep in mind that these are only suggestions, and everybody has different dietary needs. What works for one person might not work for someone else.
1. Fresh produce.
Canned food has lots of sodium, so if possible, try to buy fresh produce. If there’s a farmer’s market nearby, you might be able to find produce that’s higher quality for a lower price than your local supermarket.
Canned food still has its place; it’s cheaper, lasts longer, and doesn’t require as much prep time. Fresh produce can get expensive especially if it’s not all eaten before it goes bad. But whenever possible, include some fresh food in your diet.
Eating four to six smaller meals a day is better for you than eating three large or regular meals a day, even if you don’t have diabetes or hypoglycemia. These meals don’t have to be big. They can be something as simple as a sandwich or a small salad. Eating this way helps regulate your blood sugar so your energy levels stay consistent throughout the day. You’re also less likely to overeat because you don’t get as hungry. Snacking between meals can also help you regulate your blood sugar.
Protein keeps you energized longer and burns fat without the crash that comes with carbs such as bread, fruit, crackers, vegetables, and junk food. Your body still needs some amount of carbs, but a lot of people eat too much of it. Protein can be found in most animal products but also beans, nuts, seeds, and yogurt.
4. Infuse your water
It can be hard to stay hydrated. Water is tasteless, which many people don’t like. Fruit juice is very high in sugar, and soda and coffee can dehydrate you even if they’re caffeine free. Infused water is a good compromise. It gives water flavor, which encourages you to drink more; it’s not as high in sugar as other flavored drinks. You can make it by putting a few pieces of your favorite fruit in a pitcher of water and letting it sit for a few hours.
Cutting out soda completely can be daunting. Instead, you can concentrate on cutting out colas and diet soda.
Dark-colored soda increases your chances of developing kidney stones due to the phosphoric acid. The caffeine in it can also contribute to anxiety disorders and heart conditions. High fructose corn syrup, the sweetener used in most colas, is also linked to many health problems.
Diet soda contains highly processed artificial sweeteners that can cause many issues such as gastrointestinal distress and a possible increased risk of heart attack or stroke. If you’re craving something sweet, natural sugar is better. Plus, it doesn’t have an aftertaste.