We all have a fair idea about what constitutes a healthy diet and lifestyle. But we find it difficult to resist the temptation of having pizza with extra cheese. It is scientifically proven that a diet rich in fruits and vegetables directly impacts your overall well-being. Opting for a healthy lifestyle lessens your chances of getting chronic diseases.
Still, even when knowing this, it is fairly difficult for us to change our diet and opt for a healthy diet and lifestyle. Also, making changes to your normal diet can be overwhelming, especially if you have been following the same pattern for years. So, instead of making drastic changes that are difficult to keep up with in the long run, you should try taking baby steps to improve your diet and lifestyle.
Though, you may feel as if you are not doing enough in the beginning. But, the key to improving diet and lifestyle is to remain consistent. I have listed down some of the easiest ways to improve your diet and lifestyle. It sure isn’t possible to do all at once, but the better way is to start by making small changes bit by bit.
Take it Slow
The speed at which you consume your food also directly impacts how you gain weight. According to a study, the pace at which you consume your food affects your BMI or body mass index. People who eat their food at a fast speed tend to have a high BMI as they tend to eat more compared to those who eat slowly and chew food properly.
Your appetite also plays a major part in how much food you consume and is controlled by your hormones. The hormones in your body send a signal to your brain defining when you are full or are still hungry. The normal response time that your hormones take to activate once you start eating is about 20 to 30 minutes.
It is why eating slowly not only helps reduce your overall calorie intake. During this time, your brain signals to the body showing that you are full. As you eat slowly, chewing food properly while giving your body full time to respond. So, just taking it slow when eating is the first step to a healthy lifestyle.
Follow a Consistent Morning Routine
Waking you early in the morning and following a consistent morning routine also helps to increase your productivity. When you wake up in the morning, you get extra time to plan your day and set your schedule accordingly. This gives you a clear idea of how your day will proceed. Also, setting a proper morning routine ensures that you achieve all your daily tasks at their designated times without running out of time and rushing.
Follow a Consistent Sleep Routine
Setting a consistent sleep routine and getting a good night’s sleep directly impact your mental and physical wellbeing. In fact, sleep deprivation can lead to serious health problems in the long run. It can cause an increase in appetite along with an increase in weight.
Furthermore, lack of sleep also causes your metabolism to slow down your productivity and mindfulness. Setting a sleep routine may vary from person to person, but consistency is key to an improved lifestyle. You can set up a consistent sleep routine by going to bed at one time.
Switch Processed Food with Whole Foods
Another step toward a healthy lifestyle is switching processed foods to whole foods. Processed foods may look tempting and taste delicious. But, they come packed with an excess amount of calories.
It may not be an easy step, but you can start by trying out healthy food choices like fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grain bread, etc. These whole foods are high in natural nutrients and include essential vitamins, fiber, and proteins.
Increase Protein Intake
Protein is considered the crowned jewel of all nutrients, and it impacts your appetite and hunger levels directly. It is why consuming a high protein diet makes you feel full for a long time and decreases the production of hunger hormones.
Also, consuming proteins helps gain the muscle mass that allows burn down calories. So, if you are planning to start your weight loss journey, starts by adding a source of protein to your daily diet. Foods rich in protein include meat, nuts, eggs, beans, and dairy products.
Avoid Crash Diets
Crash diets, no matter how appealing, tend to do more harm than good to your body in the long run. Mostly crash diets are all about extreme reduction in calorie intake, which results in rapid weight loss. But, most commonly, most people tend to regain all the weight. So, following a healthy diet is a healthier and more beneficial solution to improved health and wellbeing.
Increase your Water Intake
Keep yourself hydrated, as drinking water helps reduce weight and helps maintain a healthy weight. Also, drinking water before having a meal reduces your appetite, so you eat less food. Since water is an essential part of the digestive process, consuming more water increases calorie buron. Instead of all the sugary drinks, you should consume water.
Take Essential Vitamin Supplements
Many people across the globe suffer from health problems relating to vitamin deficiency, especially vitamin D deficiency. Vitamin D deficiency can lead to problems like loss in bone density, fatigue, and pain. So, the best solution is to take vitamin supplements regularly.
Cook Your Own Meal
A healthy alternative to eating outside is cooking your own meals at home. Making your own meals not only helps you save a fortune. But, it also encourages you to stay on a healthy diet. You don’t have to worry about consuming extra calories constantly. According to a study, cooking a meal at home helps encourage a healthy lifestyle and helps reduce the risk of obesity.
Keep an Eye on Your Salt Intake
Consuming high amounts of salts in your daily diet can lead to serious health problems like blood pressure. If left unchecked for a long time, these health problems can become severe issues like blood clots. It may seem surprising, but processed foods and snacks contain the highest salt level. So, you aim to lead a healthy lifestyle that you can start by keeping an eye on your salt intake.
Eat Small Portions
Portion control is the best solution to eating what you love but in a healthy way. It is very easy to get carried away and pile your plate with large serving sizes, especially when hungry. But, instead, become mindful of the portion of what you are eating.
Fill your plate with a quarter portion of protein, a quarter portion of starchy food, and the other half with nutritious whole fruits and vegetables. All this is enough to give you a fulfilling feeling. But, if you are still hungry after eating everything thing, then it’s better to eat some fruit or vegetables to fill you up.
Consume Healthy Oils
Processed vegetable oils or seeds oils are a part of almost every household. The most common oils used for everyday cooking are canola, sunflower, and soybean. These oils are rich in fatty omega 6 oils but have a low content of healthy Omega 3 oil. This high ratio of omega 6 to omega 3 can is a root cause of inflammation, heart conditions, cancer, and autoimmune disorders. It would be best to try switching to a healthy alternative to oil like virgin olive oil, coconut oil, and Avacado oil.
Don’t Skip Breakfast
It may not be wrong to say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. According to a study, people who don’t skip breakfast tend to have a slimmer profile compared to those who do. You can start your morning with a healthy breakfast of eggs, porridge, toast, cereals, fruits, juices, tea, coffee, etc. Make sure you add starchy food to your breakfast instead of going for sugary foods.
Add Physical Activity to your Routine
Another easy way to improve diet and lifestyle is to become active. You can do this by adding physical activities to your daily routine. Exercise not only helps to keep you fit and healthy. But it also works as a mood booster that helps fight problems related to stress, anxiety, and depression. You should add about 30 minutes of exercise to your daily routine by either working out or simply walking.
Patience is the Key
Sticking to a healthy lifestyle is a conscious choice that you to keep making daily. Some days, you may follow all the healthy diet and lifestyle choices. But, other days, the whole thing may not look so easy. You likely make a lot of mistakes on the way. But, the key is to be patient, as developing new habits and setting new patterns can be very challenging. To improve your diet and lifestyle, you must start by having constant and realistic expectations. Remember, every step, no matter how small, counts.