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The old saying, “You are what you eat” is actually true. When we fuel our bodies with healthy foods, we are guaranteed to feel stronger and way more energetic than when we don’t properly nourish ourselves. The good news is, when it comes to making healthier eating decisions, a little can go a long way. In fact, research shows you’re better off making small, consistent changes rather than aiming for a drastic diet transformation. That’s because making tiny adjustments to your meals are way easier to maintain, and because they’re so easy, you won’t even think you’re sacrificing anything (like taste, for example).
Below are 7 super easy food tweaks that will get you feeling healthier and happier in no time!
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1. Skip the Cream and Sugar in Your Morning Cuppa Joe
Instead of cream, reach for skim milk. Better yet, you might want to consider a non-dairy milk, like cashew, which is super creamy, healthy and delicious. If you need a little hint of sweet in your cup of coffee, ditch the sugar and use natural sweeteners like maple syrup, honey or agave.
2. Make Your Own Salad Dressing
Store-bought salad dressings are usually filled with sugar, unhealthy oils, and words that are difficult to pronounce. Which is why whipping up your own dressing is better — and way more fun! Using balsamic vinegar and olive oil as your base, get creative with variations, including herbs, lemon juice, and Dijon mustard. It’s super easy, and way more healthy.
3. Use Avocado and Hummus as Your New Spreads
Eating healthy is all about choosing whole foods over processed ones, which means skipping condiments like mustard, ketchup, butter and mayo, and using smashed avocado, hummus or even Greek Yogurt as a spread for your fave sandwich.
4. Eat Your Veggies First
First, you want to aim for a plate that is 1/2 filled with veggies, and 1/4 filled with carbs and 1/4 filled with protein. Then you want to eat all your veggies, then the protein next, and the carbs last. Veggies are full of fiber, which will help you fill up faster with the good stuff, so by the time you get to the starchy carbs, you might already be stuffed.
5. When in Doubt, Drink Water
Drinking at least eight glasses of water per day (and double that if you’re working up a major sweat session) is not only essential for the proper circulation of nutrients in the bod, but also increases energy and fights fatigue (not to mention gives you glowing skin). If you’re hungry between meals, drink a glass of water and wait 20 minutes before reaching for a snack. Usually we mistake dehydration for hunger.
6. Order First at the Restaurant
We tend to eat what our friends are eating. If you planned on eating the chicken salad before the server showed up, but now your friends have decided to nosh on fries and nachos, then chances are you will too. The solution? When you’re dining out, order first.
7. Always Eat Breakfast
It’s the most important meal of the day for a reason. A healthy breakfast replenishes your supply of glucose (the sugar in your blood) and provides other essential nutrients to keep your energy levels up throughout the day. Start your morning with a meal consisting of protein, veggies/and or fruit, and complex carbs (for example: a veggie omelette with whole wheat toast or a whole wheat English muffin with peanut butter and banana) and you’ll not only be fueling your body with the alllll the good stuff right away, but you’ll also feel fuller longer.