Written for More-SelfEsteem.com by Paisley Hansen (Aug. 2019).
There are multiple reasons why one should eat healthy, including controlling weight, better mood, beautiful skin, restful sleep, and good concentration. Most don’t realize how big of an impact what we eat has on our bodies and the way it functions. There is also so much conflicting diet and health advice out there that can be confusing and overwhelming settling on a particular way to eat better. Let’s discuss some of the best ways to increase your health for a more amazing you!
Eat A Wide Variety of Nutrient-Dense Foods
One thing that almost all diets and nutrition experts can agree on is that we need to consume a wide variety of healthful foods for best health. We all need to get the basics–carbohydrates, proteins and fats–to ensure that we get all the nutrients we need. Counting macros is a great way to spot trends in your diet and be sure that you are getting sufficient nutrients. Most people require around 0.75 grams of protein and 0.3 grams of fat per pound of body weight. Of course, there is some bio-individuality that makes us all unique, and you may require a bit more or less protein and fat. Aside from proteins and fats, a combination of simple and complex carbs should make up the rest of your diet.
Simple vs. Complex Carbohydrates
Simple carbohydrates include foods with simple sugars such as fruits, dairy products, honey, maple syrup, and many junk foods. Fruits and dairy products have their place in a healthy diet and contain plenty of valuable vitamins, minerals and antioxidants for strong bones, teeth and immune system.
Complex carbohydrates are those foods which require more work from our bodies to break down into simple sugars. They provide energy for our bodies at a slower rate than simple carbohydrates, and are found in foods such as breads, pastas, beans, corn and potatoes. Complex carbohydrates are less likely to spike blood sugar than simple carbohydrates since they are processed at a slower rate by our bodies.
Top Ways to Eat Healthier Starting Today
Even though many people recognize the importance of eating healthy, they often feel lost when it comes to practical ways to implement a healthier diet. It doesn’t have to be difficult. Try some of these simple tips for eating better to feel better.
1. Prepare your own meals. If you find it difficult to cook for yourself, look up similar recipes to those you enjoy at your favorite restaurant. A simple meal idea that is very tasty is chopping up boneless, skinless chicken and cooking it in a skillet with a little olive oil, some bell peppers and onions. This can be served with baked or boiled potatoes mashed with olive oil and a touch of salt and pepper. Healthy doesn’t have to be fancy or complicated.
2. Choose grilled meat and salads when eating out. Grilled meats are less likely to contain sauces with questionable ingredients and can be added to salads or cooked vegetables easily when at a restaurant. Most fast food restaurants now offer salads as well.
3. Add lemon juice to your water. Many people find it hard to drink enough water. A great tip for increasing liquid intake is adding lemon juice to your water or even a little fruit juice.
4. Keep a food journal. Keeping a food journal can make sure that you are getting all the nutrients that you need. It is a good idea to also keep track of how you feel so that you notice if a particular food bothers you. If you find that certain foods affect you negatively, you will want to avoid those.
By following these simple tips, you can start forming better eating habits and notice the benefits of a better you quickly and easily. It is worth it to eat healthier to improve your weight and mood alone. As an added bonus, you will discover that you have healthier skin, nails and hair, and a healthier immune system resulting in less colds.