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How to develop healthier eating habits

by Mihaela Schwartz (follow)
Nutrition (267)      How To (64)     
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A healthy diet and eating habits are commonly phrases heard today, and for good reason - the quality of your diet and your eating habits are essential contributing factors to your general health and well-being. Over the last decades, people have become increasingly concerned with their state of well-being, and even if they do not always have the time to exercise as much as they would like to, at least they are more conscious about their nutrition. Here are a few tips that will help you develop healthier eating habits:

Eat breakfast every morning. This can help you control your hunger later in the day.

Enjoy the benefits of eating vegetables and fruit at all meals and snacks.

Check the nutritional value on food labels so that you can calculate the intake of calories and avoid the harmful ingredients.

Choose products that contain less fat (avoid all trans fat), sugar and salt. Instead, favour foods that are rich in fibre, but keep in mind that not all fibre is good for your health - the insoluble type (in wheat bread or beans) is associated with a rise in cholesterol levels.

When eating out, order smaller portions or share your meal with a friend. Ask for nutritional information on menu items as this way you will be able to make healthier choices.

Enjoy your meals with family or friends. As comfortable as it might seem, dining alone in front of the TV is not beneficial. First of all, the type of food usually associated with eating on the couch is not the healthiest. Secondly, while focusing on a movie, news program or variety show, you will not realise how much you have already eaten and you will continue out of instinct.

Take time to eat slowly and savour every bite. A slow food intake spells better digestion.

Spread your meals throughout the day in order to conserve your energy. Moreover, you will feel full most of the time and not jump on the first dish you see.

Avoid skipping meals because this could cause you to overeat later in the day.

Drink water to quench your thirst and avoid intake of sugar and caffeine laden drinks.

Eat smartly. Avoid snacking. Don’t eat just to eat, listen to your body for hunger clues. This does not mean starving, but eating only when you are hungry.

Find the balance each day between your diet and physical activity. If you are very active, choose more energetic foods to meet your needs.

If followed on a daily basis, these simple principles will enable you to lead a healthier life.

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