For a lot of us, the thought of overhauling our diet to start eating healthy is overwhelming and not very fun. A lot of healthy recipes look very time-consuming or complicated, and some of them just look unappetizing.
Eating healthy is a big lifestyle change, but it isn’t something that has to happen all at once! If you’re new to the healthy food lifestyle, the best way to start is with small, easy changes. Here are five tips to help you start living a happier, healthier life.
1. Get Organized
The first step to getting your diet together is to get organized. Search through healthy recipe websites and keep a list of all of the recipes that sound appealing. Once you have a good list, start looking through the recipes to decide which ones your cooking skills can handle (be honest with yourself on this one, trust me!). This will make your grocery shopping easy and focused.
Another organization tip is to make a list of healthy foods you know you do and don’t like, plus a separate column for foods you’d like to try. This list can help make sure you have some healthy, tasty foods on hand, plus it will help make sure you’re keeping your diet fresh and exciting with new foods. It can help with your recipe searches, too! I’m all about making things easy.
2. Prepare Your Meals Ahead Of Time
Once you have the recipes and the right foods, take a little extra time to do the prep work all at once. This will make your transition to healthy eating less of a hassle. There are two easy ways to do this.
The first way is to prepare your meals by recipe. For example, if you’re going to make a stir-fry, go ahead and cut up all of the meat and veggies and store them together in labeled plastic bags. This way, choosing the healthy option later on is quick and simple because you’ve already done all of the hard work.
The second way is to prepare all of your raw ingredients at once. Instead of portioning them by recipe, you can simply cut up and store your fruits, veggies and meats by type. This gives you more flexibility if you don’t like having all of your meals planned out. Being spontaneous can be fun, too!
3. Listen to Your Body
Our bodies are amazing. They know exactly how much food we should eat and water we should drink. Listening to your body is a small change that can have a big impact on how you eat. Start eating more slowly and pay attention to when your body says “I’m full.” If you’re thirsty, reach for sparkling fruit water or iced green tea instead of sugary juice or soda.
Pay attention to how you feel when you eat healthy foods versus when you eat junk food, too. There is a good chance that you feel lighter and happier when you eat nutritious foods and sluggish or heavy after a junk food binge. That’s your body’s way of signaling what foods you should be eating more of.
4. Don’t Deprive Yourself
Diets usually mean deprivation. We don’t allow ourselves to eat any of the “bad” foods we enjoy the most because we think it will ruin our diet. We usually restrict our calories or skip meals, too. This is a recipe for a hungry, cranky disaster that ends with binge eating and swearing to never diet again.
It’s important to remember that eating healthy is something you want to do for years to come. That means you have to allow yourself to eat some of the “bad” foods along with all of the good foods. If you want some chocolate, eat a little bit! If you’re going for Chinese, eat those carbs and enjoy them! Balancing the “bad” foods with good ones is a big step towards creating sustainable and healthy eating habits for the long run.
5. Add Some Color to Your Plate (And Your Skin)
The quickest way to start eating healthy is to add more color to your diet. Eating dark, leafy greens like kale and spinach will give your body a big boost of vitamins A and K, as well as minerals like potassium and iron. Raspberries, strawberries and blueberries are full of antioxidants (plus they’re my favorite snack!), while orange foods like carrots, squash and tangerines are a great source of vitamin C. Plus, everybody knows a colorful plate is way more fun to eat!
Once you’ve added more vitamins to your diet, you should think about adding more vitamins to your skincare, too. To help your skin maintain that healthy glow, I recommend purchasing a bottle of C21.5 serum. This serum contains 21.5% pure vitamin C plus sea buckthorn water to help your skin look brighter and more moisturized. It will also help smooth out any unevenness in your complexion. I love how fresh and citrusy it is!
Another great source of vitamins and hydration comes from the COSRX Oil-Free Moisturizing Lotion. It contains 70% birch sap, which is rich in vitamin C as well as other beneficial minerals. It also contains other brightening and hydrating ingredients like lemon peel oil, allantoin and hyaluronic acid to keep your skin looking fresh and moisturized, both inside and out.
Eating healthy doesn’t have to be difficult! Just remember to make small changes, listen to your body and try new foods. You’ll be well on your way to your happiest, healthiest self in no time.