Are you looking to improve your diet but not having much luck? You are not alone, many people struggle. Changing your diet can be difficult as it involves a lot of determination and willingness to break the habits you may have created for yourself. But it’s not impossible and once started, you’ll benefit from feeling better within yourself, your daily performances will improve and you’ll have more luck when fighting diseases.
From cooking your own meals, tracking your diet to reducing the sugary drinks you consume and staying hydrated. Below we have put together a guide of a few simple ways to help improve your diet.
Cook your own meals
Cooking your own meal can be an effective way to improve your diet. By following a recipe, you are able to control what foods you are cooking with, know exactly how many calories you are consuming and can choose exactly what you want in it. If something on the recipe is unhealthy, you can adapt the recipe and add something different. When looking for an online recipe, you can search by a variety of criteria, such as calorie allowance, the type of diet or the meat you would like to use. Cooking a healthy meal doesn’t have to take a lot of time, there are plenty of recipes out there that can be done within 30-minute. For example, a stir fry or spaghetti bolognese.
Track your diet
Another way to improve your diet is to track what you consume. There are plenty of health applications out there that you can use on your mobile device to scan and input what you eat. These applications will then present to you all the nutritional information about what you are eating. From this information, you will be able to tell if you are over your calorie allowance, not consuming enough nutrition in certain areas of your diet or whether you eat enough. It could be that you think your diet is healthy when in reality it isn’t as good as you think it is. By tracking your diet, you can make the necessary changes to improve what you eat and achieve your nutritional goals.
Incorporate more protein into your diet
From helping your body repair, assisting your body with regulation and helping maintain muscle mass, there are plenty of reasons to incorporate more protein into your diet. If you are feeling hungry, protein helps fill you up quicker than anything else, helping you snack less, aiding with weight loss. The average man should consume around 56 grams of protein and the average woman should eat 46 grams of protein, with more being consumed if you are more active than the average person. When tracking your diet, take this into account and adjust your diet accordingly.
Add fruit and vegetables into your meals
How much fruit and vegetables do you consume daily? Do you think you manage to eat the recommended five a day regularly? If you are struggling to eat that much, consider adding fruit and vegetables into your meals instead of eating them on their own. The taste of fruit and vegetables can be very different when in a dinner and you can add a variety in at the same time. When making a spaghetti bolognese, try adding peas, carrots, sweetcorn and peppers or make a casserole and add fruit and vegetables.
Reduce the number of sugary drinks you consume
Reducing your intake of sugary drinks can be an effective way to improve your diet. The more sugary drinks you consume, the more likely you are to develop a heart condition, cause damage to your teeth and drain your energy levels. Not to mention sugary drinks mostly contain a lot of calories which can cause you to gain weight. Of course, sugary drinks are enjoyable and it would be impossible to give them up altogether, but as with most unhealthy things in life, try to enjoy them in moderation. It’s ok to have them once or twice a week, just not every day.
Try to eat a normal portion size
A common hurdle that many people get into a habit of is overeating. They cook a delicious healthy meal but enjoy a very large portion size because they enjoy it so much. Yes, you’ll benefit from the nutritional advantage of a healthy meal, but overeating can lead to weight gain and can cause excessive gas and bloating. Tips to help with a normal portion size is to use a smaller plate, don’t pick at any leftovers, measure your portions and cook less than you normally do.
Drinking plenty of water is a very important part of your everyday diet, but it can be hard to do regularly. Whilst the recommended amount to drink is 2 litres a day, many people struggle to achieve this. But with so many benefits to drinking plenty of water, such as helping you lose weight, improving productivity, reducing the chances of getting ill and supporting everyday performance, it’s important you do your best to do so. One method that is highly effective at getting you to drink enough is to buy a 2-litre bottle of water. Once finished you know you have consumed enough that day and each day you can refill it.
Considering the title of this article is 10 ways to improve your diet, avoiding dieting sounds counterproductive, but hear us out! There are so many diets out there for you to try but when researching them, you’ll find that you will fail on most of them in the long run. When trying to improve your diet you want to make small lifestyle changes that are achievable. Things like drinking more water, eating more fruit and veg, keeping to normal portion sizes are all effective ideas that will work. If someone says to give up alcohol altogether or stop eating unhealthy foods, it’s simply not possible, you just need to enjoy them in moderation.
Eat a healthy breakfast
Your breakfast is the most important meal of the day. It sets you up for the morning, gives you the energy you need and it helps with your essential vitamins, minerals and nutrients. Many people choose to skip breakfast but this can be very counterproductive and in fact, some studies suggest you are more likely to be obeast by doing so. Make sure you choose a healthy breakfast that contains whole, unprocessed foods. Your breakfast is a good opportunity to include some fruit and vegetables and if you get bored of breakfast, simply switch it up each week.
Watch your salt intake
High blood pressure is a very common symptom of someone who consumes too much salt in their diet. High blood pressure can lead to blood clots and other health issues like a stroke in worse cases. When eating processed foods, you will find they have large quantities of salt in them as well as the snacks you buy from the supermarket. Even the options that you think may be healthy like canned soups or ready meals can contain too much. Before purchasing, check the intake and only buy the ones that are low in salt. If you tend to put a lot of salt in the food you cook with, try to reduce this and don’t add any additional amount when eating. You should aim for no more than 6 grams a day.
What things have you tried to improve your diet? Have you tried anything from our list above? Let us know in the comment box below.