How To Make Healthier Diet Choices

We can all relate with the struggle of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Unfortunately, the increasing cost of food and our busy schedule has made it easier for most of us to adopt unhealthy dietary foibles and fast food, however, it is important that we make conscious effort to watch what we eat. Everyone knows that eating three square meals, maintaining abalanced diet, exercising regularly, and getting plenty of rest and water is vital to maintaining good health.

On that note, here are some tips for staying healthy:

Have enough water to drink: Studies have shown that drinking water before meals can reduce your appetite and subsequentlyreduce your caloric intake. You should also drink more water, as opposed to other beverages and fizzy drinks, as this will reduce yoursugar and caloric intake.

  • Take vitamin supplements, especially Omega H-3 and Vitamin D: Vitamin D is essential for healthy bone developmentand proper functioning of the immune system. Omega H-3 reduces inflammation, maintains your heart in good condition and improvesbrain function.
  • Eat fruits as opposed to drinking them: Fruits have a highwater content. They also contain vitamins, fibre and antioxidants.Eating fruits has been found to lower the likelihood of heart disease, diabetes and cancer. Because of the high fibre content of the fruit, the sugar contained within is slowly digested and causes fewer spikes in blood glucose levels.
  • Increase your protein intake: A high protein intake helps you increase the

number of calories you burn per day.

  • Eat Slowly: The speed at which you eat plays a major role in how much you eat and in the likelihood of your gaining weight. A fast eater is about 115% more likely to be obese than a slow eater. Eating slowly helps you control the calories you consume at a giventime.
  • Cut down on the grilling and frying of food: It is advised that you bake or roast your meals, particularly of fish. The way and manner you prepare your food matters. When you fry or grill, some dangerous chemical that can cause cancer or heart disease later in life are added to the food. Apart from grilling and baking, other healthy methods of preparation include; broiling, simmering,pressure-

cooking, poaching and stewing.

  • Cook at home more often than you eat outside: Doing your own cooking assures you of what exactly is contained in yourdish. It is also cheaper and more economical. This measure has also been found to reduce weight gain, especially in children.
  • Have a good night’s sleep: Sleep deprivation disrupts appetite regulation, often resulting in increased caloric intake and weight gain. Being sleep deprived also affects concentration, productivity, athletic performance, and glucose metabolism negatively.
  • Don’t live a sedentary life: Exercise and good nutrition are complimentary. Exercise improves your mood and lowersdepression, anxiety and stress. It also helps you to lose weight, improve your energy levels and help with sleep. Aim to do about thirty minutes of moderate to high intensity exercise each day, or simply take the stairs and go on short walks whenever possible.

  • Keep off “diet foods”: In most cases, the so-called “diet foods” are misleading and very deceiving. While they’ve had their fatcontent reduced dramatically and are often labelled “fat-free”, “low fat”, “fat reduced” or “low calories”, sugar and other ingredients are often added to compensate for the lost flavour and texture. Therefore, many diet foods end up containing more calories than theirfull-fat counterparts.