Healthy eating will help you feel your best and have plenty of energy. And it is one of the best things you can do to prevent and control many health problems, such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
A good first step in changing a habit is knowing why you want to change. If you do it because you want to, you're more likely to succeed. What are your reasons for changing how you eat? To have more energy or lose weight? It may help to write them down.
If you're trying to eat in healthier ways, you may need to change some of your daily habits. But you don't need to make huge changes. Over time, small changes can make a big difference.
Here's how to get started.
- Start slowly.
Small changes are easier to make than big ones. So change your eating habits a little bit at a time. For example, try switching from white rice to brown rice or white bread to whole-grain bread. Or drink water instead of high-sugar drinks.
- Add some healthy foods.
Focus on adding healthy food to your diet, rather than just taking unhealthy foods away. For example, add vegetables to sandwiches or add fruit to yogurt and cereal.
- Help yourself make healthy choices.
- Keep more healthy foods, like fruits and vegetables, at home.
- Pack a healthy lunch and snacks for work.
- Have friends or family try a healthy meal with you.
- Put your snacks on a plate instead of eating from the package.
- Limit how often you eat out.
- Try mindful eating.
- Be aware of your hunger and respond to what your body tells you.
- Try to include foods that you enjoy eating. They can be healthy or just something you like.
- Fully enjoy the flavor, smell, texture, and color of your food.
- Take your time when you eat.
- Avoid distractions, such as screens or books, while you eat.
Current as of: March 1, 2023
Author: Healthwise Staff
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
Rhonda O'Brien MS, RD, CDE - Certified Diabetes Educator