Love Healthy Food: Eating nutritious food is the cornerstone of a healthy life, but no matter how clean your diet is or how many servings of leafy greens you eat each day, there are ways to improve your eating habits.
The secret is that healthy eating is enjoyable, so you can stick with it as part of your lifestyle for a long time. Registered dietitians help people do just that every day and share some of their most enormous ideas:
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1. Flatten the Vegetables by Roasting
If vegetables aren’t something you gravitate toward, you might want to experiment with how you cook them. In particular, “roasting vegetables brings out their natural sweetness, caramelizes the vegetables, and concentrates their flavor,” says Dr. Dana Ellis Hunnes, MPH, RD, a dietitian at Ronald Reagan-UCLA Medical Center. “It’s kind of like having sun-dried tomatoes as opposed to fresh. You get that extra flavor that makes eating fun.”
For a side dish, try sauteing Brussels sprouts in olive oil with a bit of salt, or for a healthy snack, saute chickpeas in olive oil with garlic, salt, and smoked paprika, recommends Kristin Kirkpatrick, RD.
2. Add, not Subtract
“If your goal is to bother better and you have a long no-go list, you’re doomed,” says Melissa Majumdar, RD, metabolic and bariatric coordinator at Emory University Hospital Midtown. Once you decide you “can’t” a particular food, it’s likely to be all you think about. Instead, “adding foods that have more health benefits to your days, such as fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts, and whole grains, to the higher-calorie foods you love will make it much easier to eat healthily.”
For example, instead of not ever eating another taco, think about how you can add some nutritional resources. “Fill them with roasted vegetables (like cabbage, bell peppers, and onions), a fruit salsa, or a side of fruit (mango is great for a tropical twist),” suggests Majumdar. You can also “add beans or lentils as the main protein or stretch a meat-based protein.”
Another pro tip: Swap the tortilla shell for a whole wheat tortilla or make taco bowls with leafy greens. “Adding healthy toppings to your favorite meals makes them delicious and nutrient-dense a win-win,” says Majumdar.
3. Eat what you want
While this may sound like a catch, allowing yourself to savor and enjoy your food is essential. Slowing down and practicing mindful eating can help you lose weight without giving up your preferred foods. “It works because once we eat what we want, we’re able to satisfy our cravings, and we’re less likely to overeat other foods,” explains Marjorie Nolan Cohn, RDN, a certified sports nutritionist.
If you love pasta, don’t give up. “Watch your portion sizes and add lots of vegetables, lean protein like shrimp or chicken, and top it off with some garlic and olive oil,” suggests Keri Gans, RD, author of “The Small Change Diet.”
4. Use spices
Doing so will brighten the flavor of the food and wake up your taste buds, Hunnes explains. “I love adding ginger but experiment with different spices to see what you like. They can liven up a dish,” she says. However, it remains recommended to rely on others: curry spices, garlic, and turmeric, which have anti-inflammatory properties.
5. Grow your food
“There’s something so satisfying and fun about eating fruits and vegetables that you’ve grown yourself,” says Hunnes. “Knowing you’re trying makes healthy eating less challenging and more rewarding.” Start small with somewhat like microgreens, which can contain up to five times more vitamins and phytochemicals than full-grown plants.
6. Look for farmers’ markets
“Supporting local farmers and food producers is a win-win,” says Majumdar. Here you will find fresh and unique specialties and develop a relationship with the growers. Fresh foods from farmers’ markets are often some of the most nutrient-dense because they don’t have to travel far.
Look for trendy new ingredients like cottage cheese or ground cherries that can elevate even the most complex dish. “Get the whole family complicated in the selection, and you might even find that your pickiest eater is willing to try something new,” says Majumdar.
7. Invest in new kitchen tools
Buying a new cooking gadget “can add some much-needed excitement to your meals,” says Gans. It can also help create healthier homemade versions of your favorite foods. For example, if you’re craving fries but want to avoid added fat, try an air fryer, suggests Gans. “You make perfect, crispy fries with much less fat and calories.”
Other great options include slow cookers that can make inexpensive cuts of meat juicier in soups and stews and Instant Pots for delicious overnight oats, chicken tikka masala, and even tacos.
8. Make meal preparation a ritual
Making meal homework a part of your week that you look forward to will help you last longer. Maybe listen to a good audiobook or podcast while you prepare, or involve a loved one to bond. Gans says you can also get social by calling a friend or trying the same recipes virtually over Facetime. “Together, you can compare notes on a recipe – It’s like creating your virtual supper club.”
9. Try new recipes
It can get boring if you constantly prepare and eat the same meals. The answer: new inspiration, says Gans. “Look up a formula you’ve never tried or follow different nutritionists on Instagram.” Experiment with different cuisines and cooking styles (i.e., baked, grilled, grilled) that make healthy eating delicious and fun.
Check out healthy riffs on delicious meals with our ever-growing list of RD-approved recipes.
Also read : Why America Has Become Obsessed With Wellness
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