Reed Vawter, MS, RDN, CSOWM, LD, Health Education Consultant
One of the mistakes we often make with healthy eating is spending too much time focusing on what it should look like. Are we eating plant-based? Keto? Paleo? Mediterranean? But usually, our challenge with healthy eating is not so much the what as it is the how.
Whatever name we put on our eating, the basics are pretty much the same (with minor variations). So rather than focusing on the label, we should put our efforts toward finding ways to consistently fit healthy eating into our busy days. Here are some strategies to help you do just that.
Pick Low Hanging Fruit
Not just figuratively, but literally! Make a point of targeting easy changes first to build up your confidence. Snacks are a great place to start. If you often choose packaged or processed foods between meals, simply swap them for a piece of fruit.
This simple change will produce big overall dividends, helping you to increase fiber and nutrients while reducing calories, salt, fat, and added sugars.
Make Eating Decisions Before Getting Hungry
Waiting until you are “hangry” to decide what to eat is a surefire way to sabotage your goals. Instead, try planning your meal choices in advance. You can do this a day or even a week ahead of time. By preselecting your food, you make it easier to stay on track and avoid temptation. Here’s a guide to help you make a meal plan that works for you.
Prepare Food in Advance
Lack of time is usually the biggest roadblock to healthy eating. Part of the problem is that we let our mealtimes dictate when we prepare food.
Take control of your time by preparing your meals on your schedule. Then when it comes time to eat, you only need to heat and serve. Plus, you’ll have fewer dishes to clean during the week! Here are some tips to help you get started on your meal prep journey.
Get Your Priorities in Order
Anything worth doing will take some effort and prioritization. Start by taking an honest look at how you allocate your time to see where healthy eating fits. Then follow these seven steps to make health your number one priority.
These are just a few ideas of how you can implement your healthy eating changes. The key is getting past trying to label our eating. Put your time and effort toward changing something you do daily. Then you’ll really start seeing results.