Dieticians and nutritionists have A LOT to say about what it means to follow a healthy, balanced diet! In fact, you’ll find all sorts of articles and blog posts from the experts giving you practical diet advice. One Health post had a few very interesting concepts that can help you eat better and healthier with a few simple changes:
Focus on the Journey, Not the Destination
So many of us like to picture ourselves as perfectly healthy, eating the right type of food all day every day. When we do that, it kind of feels like failure when we FAIL to eat healthy all the time. We end up discouraged and falling back on our diet because of that failure. But that’s the wrong attitude! Your mindset should be focused on the journey to good health, and on improving your diet habits one day at a time. Don’t worry if you don’t get it right all the time—just keep trying! The journey to health is what matters. After all, you may never be 100% healthy, but you don’t have to be. Putting in the effort every day is the most important factor, not being perfectly healthy. Don’t let slip-ups or mistakes cause you to backslide. Instead, pick yourself up, get back to work on your eating habits, and focus on doing what’s right for your body.
You Can Overeat Healthy Food
That’s right, there IS such a thing as too much of a good thing. Psychological studies have proven that people will often eat more of a food they believe to be “healthy”, which means those healthy foods can end up being just as unhealthy as something less-than ideal for your diet. The best piece of practical diet advice many experts give is to start curbing your food intake, no matter what you eat. Our modern diet often includes portions far too large for our bodies, so we end up overeating and overindulging even on healthy food. Cut back on your portion sizes—even if the food is “healthy”—and you’ll do your diet a huge favor.
Eat More Plant Foods
One dietician calls it “eating lower on the food chain”, which means the food our food eats. Plant-based foods are loaded with micronutrients that are critical for our health—not just weight loss, but full-body health. A menu that is “plant-forward” (higher in plant foods than other foods) can not only keep you fuller (thanks to its high fiber content), but will help you to reduce your intake of fats, sugars, and unnecessary calories. Make sure that at least 50% of every plate is filled with plant foods.
Make Carbs Count
Carbs have become the new “enemy” for many dieters, but the truth is that carbs are a vital source of energy. Without them, you become sluggish and your body has a hard time functioning properly during periods of intense activity. Instead of cutting carbs, focus on making sure all the carbs you eat are high quality. That means making sure to load up on fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds, and whole grains, while cutting any sugars, refined grains, and empty carbs.
Harness Your Mind And Body
A healthy diet won’t be easy, so it’ll take a lot of mental fortitude to keep your diet on track. Find those mental tricks that work, tricks like simplifying your meal to reduce choices, keeping your kitchen tidy and organized with all your healthy foods immediately visible, and shrinking the size of your dinnerware to reduce portion sizes. Get your mind involved and your body will see results!