For many of us, the idea of eating healthier generates images of undressed salads, empty snack cupboards and no more chips, but this doesn’t have to be the case.
Ultimately, maintaining a healthy weight comes down to maintaining a balanced diet – one that promotes clean eating and nutritious foods, but with a gentle addition of comforting treats.
After all, life is about living, and looking after your health comes more naturally if you enjoy doing it.
So here is a quick guide to eating more healthily the easy way:
Eat a better breakfast
Break your overnight fast with a breakfast that is guaranteed to keep you fuller for longer and therefore less likely to reach for unhealthy foods. Getting plenty of protein in the morning is key, so try some scrambled eggs on wholemeal toast, or Greek yoghurt with fruit and honey to get a good dose. If you’re always in a rush, quickly cut up an apple and spread the slices with some nut butter instead.
Rethink your drinks
A great way to cut calories without noticing is to rethink your drinks. Fizzy drinks in particular can be very calorific, containing up to 35g of sugar per can. Swap your daily full-fat Coke for sparkling water with lemon or lime to add flavour and you will see a huge difference to your blood sugar levels as well. The same goes for hot drinks – steer clear of sugar in coffee and tea, and use cinnamon to taste.
It is important to be able to enjoy your favourite foods, but making sure you do so sensibly is key to keeping on track of your weight and ultimately your health. While nutritionists tend to be divided over the benefits of a ‘cheat day’, they are generally united on the idea that you should stick to only one ‘cheat meal’. This means no more snacking on chocolate once you have finished eating.
Make green vegetables taste better
Broccoli and spinach can taste quite bland, but adding the right ingredients can make them a delicious accompaniment to any meal. When cooking brocolli, fry in butter and then add a splash of water to the pan. Place a lid on top and let it steam until soft. For spinach, wilt in coconut oil and stir using a fork dipped in garlic clove to add subtle flavour.
Eat carbs around activities
It is important to balance the amount of carbohydrates you have in your diet around how much physical activity you do. If you exercise regularly you can get away with eating more bread, rice and potatoes, but if you have an office job where your only movement is getting up to go to the toilet, you may want to consider eating meals that are less carb heavy.