The following are some simple tips for improving your eating behaviors.
- Drink sufficient water.Though the exact amount of water each of us needs will vary depending on our gender, activity level, and other factors, we do know that the approximate amount that should be consumed daily is 2-3 liters. This is equal to 8 to 12 8-ounce glasses. Keep a bottle of water with you at all times, and you will easily be able to meet this goal.
- Eat more fruits and vegetables. Include at least one fresh fruit and/or one vegetable with each meal or snack. For during work hours, bring the "grab and go" fruits such as oranges, bananas, apples, pears, and peaches. There are many to choose from.
- Flavor foods with fresh herbs instead of salt.Parsley, garlic, celery leaves, oregano, thyme, rosemary--all of these herbs will season your food with wonderful flavors, without adding salt.
- Make your own vegetable soups.Soups are easy to make and healthy to eat! You can include a lot of different vegetables, beans, and low-fat meats. Store the soup in ready-to-go containers. You'll see how well they satisfy that hunger you feel when first coming home from work. And you won't be tempted by french fries, cold cuts or fatty cheeses.
- Serve yourself small portions.One way to easily manage your hunger, and thus you weight, is to eat small meals or snacks every 2 to 3 hours. This is a testament to the theory that "quality, not quantity" is what counts. Eat well, but eat little!
Try to minimize or avoid:
- Alcohol.When people drink alcohol, they usually add it to their normal daily intake, instead of modifying what they eat. Therefore, this means they are adding additional calories to their daily count. Without compensating (by eating less or exercising more) for these extra calories, it is not surprising that many people put on weight.
- Fasting.It's a fact: to lose weight, you need to eat. Not eating for many hours can actually be harmful, because it can slow down your metabolism. This signals to your body that bad times have come, and you start burning fewer calories just to survive.
- Sweets.One piece of candy or chocolate will not usually harm you, or cause you to gain weight. However, many people have a hard time controlling the amount of these types of foods they have, and it is easier to just avoid them. If you can limit yourself to a sweet that is 100 calories or less, and you count it as part of your total daily intake, it is okay to include.
- Added salt.Salt provides large amounts of sodium, a mineral that helps you retain liquids. Canned products are the most dangerous, because they use sodium as a preservative. Make a decision--take the salt shaker off the table or out of reach if you tend to put salt on every bite. A good tip is to add salt to foods that are already cooked, as they generally don't require as much.
- Adding excessive condiments and salad dressings.Though it is best to minimize adding sauces and dressings to your food, there are many products available in your local grocery store today that are lower in fat and salt that you can chose. As mentioned previously, you may consider adding more natural herbs and spices to flavor your food instead of adding extra calories with dressings and condiments
By making a few small changes in your eating behaviors, being disciplined, and adding a little exercise to your routine, you'll soon see a difference in how you look and feel.
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