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By now, you likely know that a proper diet is vital for your physical, mental, and emotional well-being. However, you don’t need to become a perfect eater overnight. Instead, focusing on adopting healthy eating habits and making small changes to your daily routine is far more effective.
Here are six simple habits to start incorporating into your life for long-term benefits:
Enjoy Smaller Portions
You don’t have to completely restrict yourself from indulging occasionally. Practice eating smaller portions or splitting entrees with friends. When reaching for snacks, look for the serving sizes indicated on the packaging, and stick to them.
Eat Slowly and Mindfully
People often eat quickly without really tasting their food or paying attention to how much they’re consuming. Eating slowly is an easy way to consume fewer calories since it takes your body time to realize you’re full. Listen to your body and stop when you feel satisfied, not stuffed.
Drink Lots of Water
Staying well hydrated helps maintain regular digestion and boost energy levels throughout the day. It’s recommended adults drink a minimum of eight glasses of water each day. More fluids are required if you’re exercising or in a hot climate.
Load up with Vegetables
Eating vegetables is an easy way to fill up quickly with low calories and plenty of vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Try adding some greens like spinach or kale into smoothies or salads, swapping white potatoes for sweet potatoes as a side dish, and working some cooked veggies into pasta, burritos, and tacos well as lunch bowls.
Eat A Variety of Foods
Make sure you’re getting a variety of healthy foods in your diet. This includes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, nuts and seeds, legumes, and healthy fats. Eating a wide range of these foods will ensure you meet your nutritional needs.
Incorporate Intermittent Fasting
This isn’t about starving yourself but rather about giving your body time and space between meals to digest food and absorb nutrients more efficiently. To begin Intermittent Fasting, choose the window of time within a day that works best for you and stick to it. For example, you can only eat between 10 am and 6 pm. The other hours only consume water. This will help your body become better at metabolizing food and reduce your cravings and sugar intake.
Ultimately, creating healthy eating habits all comes down to finding a balance between allowing yourself some indulgences and understanding how specific foods will impact your health positively or negatively. Achieving this equilibrium could be difficult at first as you push through old habits, but the benefits to your health will be worth it in the long run.