It's natural that we want to reach for that candy bar or bag of chips every now and then. The question is how often is "now and then" for you? Your scale and full length mirror should give you a clue, but getting a full physical is an even better way to find out just how healthy you are.
Before making that trip to doctor, you may want to take a look at these steps first.
When to Eat
For years experts have argued about healthy eating schedules and practices. Do you eat three full meals a day? Do you eat six small meals that are spread out? Eat three healthy meals a day or six smaller meals a day. You decide. Doesn't sound helpful? Here's the thing, the reason why so many health gurus advocate for more smaller meals versus less (and larger) meals is because your body starts working on breaking down your food as soon as you begin eating. When you eat a large meal, your body immediately starts breaking down the food. When its done, it slows down. When you eat multiple smaller meals throughout the day, your body is constantly working at breaking down the food and your metabolism goes up.
Either method works
, but you just have to make sure that your calorie intake is in check.
Making Time to Eat Healthy
Why is this so hard? It really isn't. Our society has gotten accustomed to having a vending machine or soda machine around every corner. The problem is that they have this enormously large, magnetic force that pulls us towards them. Bring snacks from home
. There are plenty of things that you can get at the store that are just as delicious, but much healthier. Bringing small baggies of snacks to work keeps you from craving big, fatty meals at lunch. Try taking snacks like almonds, raisins, low fat yogurt, sliced apples, or whole grain crackers everywhere you go. You'll be surprised at how easy it will be to pass up those vending machines.
What to Cook
Everyone seems to think that buying frozen food is the way to go when you have a crazy work schedule, a busy family, and completely booked weekends. Wrong. The problem with frozen food is that it has either lost most of its nutritional value or it has been loaded with preservatives. Ewww. Buy fresh vegetables because most of them don't even require cooking or any preparation at all. Also try to find an alternative to the foods you just can't live without. If you love bacon, buy turkey bacon. If you love sweets, buy some dark chocolate. If you love bread, try some reduced-fat or fat-free bagels or muffins. There are plenty of alternatives
New Food Preparation Techniques
Plenty of people already prepare healthy meals for themselves or for their family, but a lot of times the way the meal is being prepared isn't very healthy.
1. Steam or microwave vegetables. When you boil veggies, and then later dispose of the water, you get rid of all of the water soluble vitamins and minerals.
2. Try broiling your meats. When broiling fish, chicken and other tender meats it allows fat to drip away. Always try to cook your meats on a rack over a shallow pan.
3. Broil or stew some of your other foods. When you do this, you create a broth that can be used for later use. Just chill it and remove any fat that rises to the top.
Using the Right Equipment
Now that you know about some food prep techniques, you're going to need the equipment to get the job done. There are a few simple items that you will use over and over.
1. Buy a hand-held juicer
. Using fresh juice, such as lemon, lime or orange juice, to baste your meats is much healthier than using a glaze or butter concoction. Having a juicer handy is always a good idea.
2. You're also going to need a good skillet
. By this, I mean that you need one that is non-stick and that can be drained easily.
3. You're going to need a grill pan
as well rather than a flat pan for baking. There are two reasons for this: it substitutes for an actual grill and it allows the grease and oil to settle in the grooves so that you can easily remove your food without getting all of the icky stuff with it.
TIPS & TACTICS
- 90% of the time when you feel hungry it's actually because you're dehydrated. Try drinking some water or chewing on some crushed ice. If this doesn't curb your hunger, then try a small and healthy snack.
- Taking healthy snacks to work prevents the urge of running to the vending machine.
- Boiling vegetables takes away a lot of the natural nutrients. Try microwaving your veggies. It is WAY faster and it doesn't take away from the nutrients in your precious veggies.
- Take a multivitamin everyday to get those extra nutrients you aren't getting through your new daily healthy eating routine.
- This website is geared to new or expecting mothers, but the tips are helpful to everyone.
IDEA Health & Fitness Association
Mission Restaurant Supply