Healthy living begins with healthy eating. Your diet has a proven effect on how you feel during the day, how you recover from sickness or injury, and how susceptible you are to illness and disease.
The benefits of a healthy diet are too great to ignore, and since March is National Nutrition Month, now is the perfect time for a nutritional tune up. Work the below tips into your daily eating routine for more balanced, wholesome meals.
Cook at home.
Restaurant-prepared meals often contain more calories and undesirable ingredients compared to those prepared at home. You also have more control over each dish when you cook for yourself, and can make recipes healthier through simple swaps and modifications.
Eat your vegetables.
Vegetables should make up most of your diet. Include a large helping with every single meal, and opt for plant-based snacks, such as guacamole or carrots with hummus, as well.
Cut out processed foods.
Choose whole, natural foods, like lean meats and vegetables, over processed foods, like frozen dinners and pre-packaged snacks. Many processed items contain extra additives or large amounts of sodium, fats and/or sugar that should be avoided.
Reduce sugar intake.
Unfortunately, the typical American diet includes an exorbitant amount of sugar. Reduce your sugar intake by carefully reading ingredient labels on your food, and choosing items without sugar listed. You may be surprised to find your favorite tomato sauces, soups and even deli meats contain added sugar. Also limit the amount of baked goods and desserts you eat, and should you choose to indulge, keep portions small.
You can eat a perfect diet, but if your water intake is too low, you’ll never experience the full benefits of your positive food choices. Set a goal to drink at least 64 ounces of water a day.
Food should be used as both fuel and medicine, equipping the body to run efficiently, stay healthy and keep on amazing. For more information on eating a balanced diet and healthy recipe ideas, check out the Eat Well section of the BHealthy blog.