Five simple things you can do to improve your health right now
At one point or another, we’ve all made a sweeping statement about improving our health. ‘I’ll start dieting on Monday’, ‘I’m going to go to the gym every day before work’ or ‘I’ll stop buying takeaway’. Sound familiar?
While well-intentioned, the problem is these major lifestyle overhauls are usually far too drastic to stick to in the long term – so eventually, your willpower will cave in, and you’ll end up back at square one, wondering where to next.
At Honest Nutrition, our approach is far more sustainable. We focus on incorporating small, easy-to-achieve habits that you can build up over time– leaving you far better off in the long haul. To give you a helping hand, we’ve highlighted five easy things you can start doing today to improve your health for good (bonus: they don’t involve exotic superfoods, fancy supplements or silly fad diets).
1. FILL HALF YOUR PLATE WITH VEGGIES
Eating enough vegetables can seem like a challenge – but it’s really not! Our tip to ensure you’re getting your five a day is pretty simple: fill half your plate with veggies at each main meal. Yep – breakfast, lunch and dinner!
That leaves a quarter of your plate for nutritious wholegrains and a quarter for lean protein to keep your muscles strong. This formula will help ensure you’re getting all of the micronutrients, fibre and antioxidants you need to stay healthy and fight disease.
2. FIND DIFFERENT SOURCES FOR YOUR SPREADS AND SAUCES
Spreads and sauces are a much-loved flavour boost for many – but unfortunately, many are hiding a tonne of saturated fat that’s bad for your heart and extra kilojoules that can quickly pile up. So, start swapping! Our favourites include:
Low fat Greek yoghurt instead of sour cream
Tzatziki instead of aioli
Hummus instead of mayo
Smashed avocado instead of butter
Natural peanut butter instead of chocolate hazelnut spread
3. SLOW YOUR MUNCHING ROLL
You’ve probably heard the word ‘mindfulness’ popping up lately – and for good reason. It’s an approach to eating that helps you tune into your hunger and satiety cues, and helps you adjust your intake accordingly, rather than eating just for the sake of it.
Eating mindfully also means you pause and be present in the moment (read: stop scrolling through Facebook and put your phone away! It’s about using all of your senses to truly experience the colour, aroma, texture and taste of every bite. By doing so, you’ll get more joy out of eating and be less likely to overeat.
4. RETHINK YOUR FIZZY SOFT DRINKS
Water should always be your drink of choice – but sometimes, plain old water just doesn’t cut it! Instead of a sugary soft drink, try infusing sparkling water with fruit like berries or citrus (think: lemon, lime or orange), or even fresh cucumber. Not only will you cut down on unnecessary kilojoules, your teeth will thank you, too!
5. DON’T SKIP MEALS
You’ve heard that skipping meals is a bad idea – and it’s true! You’ll miss out on valuable nutrients, be low on energy and risk becoming overly hungry (which leads to overeating). So, start to prioritise breakfast, lunch and dinner (emails, social media and the laundry can wait!). Your health will thank you for it!