Opportunities for nutritional misdeeds are everywhere. It seems as though there’s always just one last Twix in the candy bowl or an extra bag of Cheetos in the vending machine at the gym. After all, you figure as you scarf down the entire bag of M&M’s you were planning on rationing out over the next month, you go to the gym enough to make a few diet cheats worth it, right?
Wrong! If you truly want to become healthier or lose weight, committing to a regular exercise plan is only half the battle; the other half lies in resisting the countless snack temptations you face on a daily basis and dedicating yourself to eating healthfully. Unfortunately, eating a salad for lunch once a week just won’t cut it if you plan to build healthy eating habits. You need to make a lifestyle change – and thankfully, the transition doesn’t need to be difficult. Try out a few of these healthy eating hacks to stay satisfied and on-track during a diet!
Spice Your Food
Maybe you don’t like broccoli – but have you ever had it with a sprinkle of garlic and a little red pepper? How about stir-fried with soy sauce? Many people avoid eating vegetables out of a belief that those foods are inevitably soggy and bland – but they don’t need to be! On a similar note, try adding a little spice and oil to your meats rather than frying them in butter. A little pep goes a long way towards making healthy foods even more appealing than their junky alternatives.
Eat on Schedule
Sometimes, skipping or postponing a meal is unavoidable, especially on a hectic day. However, doing so should never become a habit. Our bodies need regular nourishment; without it, our metabolism slows down, lessens our energy, and leads to a feeling of grogginess. Moreover, those who skip meals are more likely to satisfy their cravings for unhealthy snacks to compensate for the missed meal.
Get Enough Sleep
You might want to stay up all night – but you probably shouldn’t. A lack of sleep disrupts hormone production in our bodies and ultimately leads us to crave food when we don’t need it. A regular sleep cycle will ensure that you only feel hunger pangs when you need to eat.
Toss Out the Junk
Believe me – if it’s in the pantry, you’ll eat it. Do a deep clean of your cabinets and toss out any unhealthy snacks you find lying around, then replace what you tossed with healthy alternatives and staples. That way, you won’t be tempted to stray from your nutritional plan by a late-night craving.
Prep Your Lunch Early
It’s true, making lunch is a pain. But do you really want to spend more money on a burger or soggy wrap when you could make a perfectly good (and tasty!) salad or shake at home? Take a few minutes to prep your lunch in the evening, so snagging the to-go container is an easy task the next morning.