Eating healthy can help you lose weight and have more energy. It can also improve your mood and reduce your risk of disease. Yet despite all these benefits, maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle can be difficult.
Here are some of the ways to stick to a healthy diet:
# Start with realistic expectations: Eating a nutritious diet has many benefits, including potential weight loss. However, itâ€™s important to set realistic expectations. For example, if you pressure yourself to lose weight too quickly, your plan to achieve better health may backfire. Researchers found that obese people who expected to lose a lot of weight were more likely to drop out of a weight loss program within 6â€“12 months. On the other hand, setting a more realistic and achievable goal can keep you from getting discouraged and may even lead to greater weight loss.
# Keep unhealthy foods out of the house. Itâ€™s really tough to eat healthy if youâ€™re always surrounded by junk foods. If other family members want to keep these foods around, at least keep them hidden, rather than on counter tops. The saying â€œout of sight, out of mindâ€ definitely applies here. Having food on display in various areas of the house has been linked to obesity and an increased consumption of unhealthy foods
# Carry healthy snacks. Sticking to a healthy diet can be tough when youâ€™re away from home for extended periods of time. Unfortunately, when you get too hungry, you may end up grabbing whatever is available. This is often processed food, which doesnâ€™t really satisfy hunger and isnâ€™t good for you in the long run. Having healthy high-protein snacks on hand can help keep your appetite in check until youâ€™re able to have a full meal.
Some examples of good, portable snacks are almonds, peanuts and roasted channa.
# Practice mindful eating. Take time to enjoy your food, and appreciate its ability to nourish you. This increases your chances of making successful, lasting behavioral changes. Overweight and obese women who practiced mindful eating had significant improvements in their relationship with food over a 4-month period.
# Start the day with high protein breakfast. If your first meal is well balanced and contains adequate protein, youâ€™re more likely to maintain stable blood sugar levels and not overeat for the rest of the day.