Food is our body's fuel, what you put in it will effect the performance. If you are having trouble getting your day going, or you feel like your mind, and your body are dragging, look to what you are eating. If you put good in, you will get good out. Don't worry about going on some crazy unrealistic diet; these six simple lifestyle tips will help!
1. Drink Lots of Water
When looking at what we are eating, we often overlook what we are drinking. I have seen so many friends conveniently forget to add their liquids when counting calories. Do not forget about sugary coffee drinks, juices, alcohol, and whatever else you drink during the day. These can add up quickly. With all the beverage options out there, do not overlook that good old fashioned water. Water keeps you hydrated and helps to fill you up.
2. Portion Control
One of the most common "mistakes" we make with food is just overeating. How often do you go out to eat, and they bring you a heaping plate of food, and you say "I could never eat all this" but you sure try to. There is no need to give your body more food than it needs, it will still only use what it needs. When you get that heaping plate of food, instead of making yourself physically uncomfortable trying to eat it all, just think score, two meals for the price of one! Make a mental "game plan" before you start eating, and know when you should stop.
3. Non Processed Foods
I will not lie, this one is hard for me, it is so easy to go to the grocery store and load up on the quick and easy processed foods. You think to yourself "this is so convenient" because all you have to do is unwrap it or reheat it. These foods often have preservatives, or other ingredients you would leave out if making at home. Instead, if you are looking for convenience, opt for meal prep days at home, then when you need the food you still get that simple "just heat it up" experience.
4. Listen to your body
I, personally, might argue that this is the most important. Each body is different, as are it is needs, and these needs can vary based on what you are doing if you are sick and a variety of other, ever changing factors. Pay attention to the signals your body is sending you. Your body will tell you when it is hungry, thirsty or full. Try only to eat when you are hungry, not just because you are bored and there is a bag of chips in the kitchen. When you are eating listen to your body, stop eating when you are no longer hungry. If you are feeling full, you have probably eaten too much. A trick to help with this is to eat slowly. When you eat too fast, you do not realize you are until it is too late. Slow down, enjoy each bite, and when your body does not need anymore, stop. A "happy plate" may not always mean a happy body.
5. Colorful Plate
Maintain a well-rounded diet by including all of the food groups on your plate. Mix fruits, veggies, and proteins to fill your body with the variety it craves.
6. Make your own food
The best way to ensure that your meal contains the highest quality ingredients is to make the meal yourself. Often when we go out to eat, we get too much salt or other ingredients that you can easily limit at home. Cooking more at home does not mean you can never go out; it is just a reminder to take notice of the ingredients you are consuming. A safe rule is that if you cannot pronounce it, there is a good chance you should not be eating it.