When considering improving your diet as you step enthusiastically (or with trepidation) into the new year, you need to ask yourself some important questions in order to support your health and wellbeing. First and foremost: what’s on your plate?
By habit, humans eat first things visually. We are taken and have a psychological reaction to the plate (or lunch box) of food in front of us. This is a key reason why people so often show their food on social media, to create the same feelings about it in others. One great way to start a new improved diet is to follow the procedure to be found in a good restaurant. The foods on your plate should not be mixed together or piled up.
Place don’t pile
Separating the foods on your plate allows you to see each food individually and appreciate its different tastes and attributes. Also, by not piling foods on, it’s easier to have complete looking plate with fewer items which will naturally limit calorie consumption, which in turn can help reduce the risk of obesity and chronic disease. As well as considering portion control, choose foods that are rich in nutrients to get a good balance of micronutrients (antioxidants, calcium, iron, zinc, etc.) in your diet, making sure to include fruits and vegetables.
Slow as steady
Chewing for longer promotes more gastric juices to aid beneficial digestion but it also means we eat slower, allowing are appetite to be sated and leave us feeling more satisfied with less food. It can take a while for the stomach and gut to relay messages to the brain that we’re no longer hungry, so slower more considered eating and chewing can actually help us lose weight.
Variety is key to longevity
Often, we start eating diets that restrict the types of foods we eat, leaving room for foods we actually enjoy. Why do we torture ourselves like this? Nutritionists recommend a healthy, wholesome diet that tastes great because the science behind eating the things we enjoy tells us that everyone can keep changing. You can always change and adjust the food if you tire of eating the same things. For instance, cruciferous green vegetables are incredibly good for us, but we needn’t stick to broccoli, kale, or particular types of cabbage – mix it up!
Failing to plan is planning to fail
Each and every day is an opportunity to improve your health and nutrition. If your weight is something you are struggling with, one strategy that is proven to be beneficial is to record your food intake in a journal and regularly plan meals rather than eat in reaction to food cravings. Such planning helps us avoid mistakes and overeating. If you’re not sure where to start with you’re planning, you could seek the help of professionals such as London nutritional therapist Food Power Nutrition, who offer diet review services as well as tailored food and supplement plans.
Finally, by eating all meals (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) at the same time each day where possible, you will be more likely to stick to your eating pattern and see the benefits of your new regime.
We hope you find these tips useful and that you realise that, with a little bit of planning and dedication to the cause, eating your way to health is entirely possible, and taste great!