New year, new you? As January is coming to an end, most of us are struggling to keep our new year’s resolutions! Everyone knows that the key to a healthy life is having a balanced and nutritious diet and exercising regularly… but healthy eating doesn’t have to be boring and tasteless!
There is strong evidence to show that a healthy diet can reduce the risk of obesity, diabetes, strokes, heart disease, certain cancers and osteoporosis. Read our tips below to keep you on track.
Healthy Eating Tips
1) Cut down on saturated fat and sugar
A low amount of fat should be in everyone’s diet as it is an essential source of essential fatty acids which you can’t create yourself. Fat also allows the body to absorb vital fat-soluble vitamins such as A, D and E.
2) Reduce salt to prevent high blood pressure
The NHS recommends that we do not eat more than 6g of salt per day, but most people are exceeding this by consuming around 8g. The recommendation hopes to reduce the amount of heart disease and strokes in the UK. However, we all need some sodium to regulate body fluids and to help with muscle and nerve activity.
3) Eat plenty of fruit and vegetables
You should get your 5-a-day or more to get what you need in terms of vitamins and minerals. They are also a great way to get lots of soluble fibre in your diet, and have been proven to reduce heart disease, strokes and some forms of cancer.
4) Drink plenty of water
The NHS recommends a minimum of 2-3 litres of water per day, consumed regularly. This will help for a variety of reasons but will also help to keep you feeling full and lose weight. A great alternative to high sugar drinks, which are also terrible for your teeth.
5) Increase soluble and insoluble fibre in your diet
Fibre is vital for good health and will also help you to feel full for longer. Insoluble fibre doesn’t get broken down but helps move other foods through the system which can help to prevent certain digestive problems. Soluble fibre helps to reduce the amount of cholesterol in your blood, which is dissolved in water in your digestive system.
6) Protein with every meal
Nutritionists recommend that every meal should include some protein, which will also keep you feeling full for longer. If you are working out a lot, protein will also help you to build and repair muscle, ultimately becoming stronger.
7) Don’t skip any meals, especially breakfast
Research has shown that people who eat breakfast are less likely to be overweight. Breakfast has also been shown to have positive effects on mental performance and increase concentration in the mornings. A low sugar cereal with fruit is a tasty and nutritious breakfast idea. Instead of skipping meals, have more smaller meals.
New year’s resolutions shouldn’t just be about food. As well as a good diet, you should also try to get enough sleep, which is proven to help health, well-being and weight loss. Exercise is also important, physically and mentally. A great motivator is setting goals and rewarding yourself when you meet milestones.
Keep an eye out for our recipes for inspiration. See our recipe for our detox Kohlrabi salad here.
View NHS advice here.