A lot of people say they want to start eating healthy and move to a healthy diet plan, but they don’t really know where to start.
I personally know people who keep putting it off merely because they think adopting a healthy diet plan requires expert consultations and drastic changes to their daily routines and eating habits.
While changes are necessary, there are small, basic but essential steps that can make a world of difference, and today we’re going to be discussing 6 such steps towards adopting a healthy diet plan.
#1. Avoid Sugary Drinks & Foods
Ideally you should avoid sugar as much as possible, but even if you’re using sugar for your coffee or tea, stay away from processed foods that contain it – the list of the obvious suspects is pretty clear: soda, snacks, sauces, baked items, fast food and beverages.
If you cut out on all these items you will essentially get rid of refined carbohydrates, which are the main cause of obesity, weight gain and diabetes.
Be warned though, if you’re addicted to sugary foods you will experience withdrawal symptoms when you quit, but its important to start somewhere, and this will definitely have a positive effect in the long run.
#2. Reduce (Ideally Stop) Consumption of Processed Meats
Processed and cured meats are extremely unhealthy for you. Firstly there is the issue of Nitrosamines, which are carcinogenic compounds formed when nitrites and amino acids bond, and then there is the growing concern about industrial farming.
Most of the animals we eat today haven’t walked on grass or felt any sunshine. Moreover, they are mainly fed on corn and soya, which means they have a hugely imbalanced diet which then affects the quality of their meat.
All in all, the importance of staying away from processed meat cannot be overstated.
#3. Go for Organic and Farm Fresh Foods
Even if you can’t afford organic food for your daily usage or don’t have access to it, you should try incorporating it in your diet as much as possible.
This means you should go for fresh fruit, wild berries and other produce which has not undergone chemical treatment or genetic modifications for higher yields. Needless to say, most of the food items are tainted in this way and are quite unhealthy.
#4. Avoid Overcooking your Food
This is something you can start today and notice a big difference very soon. A lot of people are not aware that slow, gentle cooking is much better than quick, high temperature cooking.
Overcooked food essentially loses its nutrients because most of them denature at high temperatures and become less effective if not downright useless.
Instead of deep frying, you should get a steamer and try steaming your food slow or at best, saute it sparingly.
#5. Don’t Compromise on Water
Water has no calories (I’m sure you already knew that) and should be your top priority during the day, especially in summers. A hydrated body is a healthy body because water doesn’t just keep your biological temperature down, it’s an essential ingredient in your body’s chemical reactions.
Similarly, lack of water actually slows down the process of burning fat. Even if you’re on a perfect diet, you won’t lose as much weight as you would if you’re properly hydrated.
#6. Train Yourself in Moderation
Extremes are never good, and the same is true for a healthy diet. Just like you can’t eat too much ice cream and expect everything to be fine, you can’t starve yourself and think you’re doing your body any good.
It may seem hard, but it’s important to start training yourself in moderation. It’s okay to have a scoop of your favorite chocolate ice cream, just know that if you’re having one day, you can’t have another one tomorrow, and the day after and so on.
Similarly, instead of totally skipping on your favorite desserts, have a smaller portion but eat slowly and enjoy the flavor.
Eating slowly is actually a long-term weight loss secret and you can give it a try yourself. Just eat at a normal pace but make sure you properly chew your food – do it with every meal and you’ll notice a huge difference in your appetite.
Apart from all this, you can’t underestimate the importance of a healthy mind for a healthy body. Try to remain as stress-free as possible, and know that while stress and anxiety are normal in everyone’s life, there are healthy ways to deal with them such as exercise and spending time with people who inspire and motivate you.
We hope you’re going to find all these tips useful and understand that these steps are essential for moving towards a healthy diet plan. They may seem hard, but are in fact achievable through a little motivation and inspiration.
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