Dieting is a great way to get healthier and lose weight, but most people are unable to follow the strict rules of a diet for more than a few weeks. Luckily, there are several easy ways you can make small changes to your meals to help make them healthier.
Control Your Portions
Portion control is absolutely crucial if you want to get healthier without following a strict diet. The most important aspect of portion control is making sure at least half of your meal consists of vegetables. The other half of the plate needs to contain mostly lean proteins. These foods provide many health benefits including helping your body feel full. You can still have your favorite carbohydrates, but they need to be less than 20 percent of your total meal. Portion control is so successful because it lets you eat your favorite foods without destroying your health goals.
Add Some Protein
Protein is one of the most important nutrients in food because it helps strengthen nearly every aspect of the body. Unfortunately, it is often hard to get enough protein in your diet if you are a vegan or vegetarian. A plant-based diet has a lot of health benefits, but they are quickly negated if you do not get enough protein. A great way to make sure this does not happen is by adding a non GMO protein powder to your water or smoothies. The few extra grams of protein provided by this drink will be enough to keep the body strong.
Intermittent fasting has gained a lot of popularity recently because it is an extremely effective way to control your eating. The most popular form of intermittent fasting will see you consume all of your meals over the course of eight hours. You will not be allowed to eat any food the other 16 hours of the day. The easiest way to do this is by skipping breakfast in the morning and eating lunch and dinner at your normal times. Following this eating plan increases energy levels, lowers blood sugars and makes it easier to burn body fat. If you absolutely cannot go without a small snack in the morning, then you can extend the meal consumption time to 12 hours.
Make Smart Substitutions
Healthy eating is all about making smart substitutions. The goal is to remove the unhealthy ingredients in a dish and replace them with healthier alternatives without having to sacrifice flavor. If a recipe calls for you to sauté the food, then you can substitute the oil for chicken broth. You can also just choose to use a healthier oil the next time you sauté. Olive oil or coconut oil are the two healthiest options. Another popular ingredient that needs to be substituted out of your meals as much as possible is salt. Season the food with a several healthier spices to limit your salt intake and still make a delicious meal.
Pick the Right Beverage
What you drink with your meal is just important as the food on the plate. All of your hard work will be for nothing if you drink a soda or sugary fruit juice with your meals. Drinking water will help your stomach feel full faster without adding any unnecessary calories to your meal. Low-fat milk is another great beverage choice. Low-fat milk will increase your consumption of calcium, vitamin D and other key nutrients without the extra calories found in whole milk.
Healthy eating does not have to painful. Making these few minor alterations to your meals will go a long way to helping you live a happier and healthier life.