How to develop healthy eating habits without giving up the foods you love is a question I wish more clients asked me. The reason is that oftentimes clients and prospective clients come to me looking to "eat healthier" when in reality they just want to eat without guilt. This is understandable in a culture that glorifies being a "healthy eater" even at the risk of being borderline disordered.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not placing judgment as I have been that "healthy eater" who was obsessed with counting calories, tracking macros, and portion controlling every single meal. I also learned the hard way that this style of eating wasn't right for my personality or my lifestyle. So, I started seeking more practical ways to develop healthier eating habits that didn't require me to be so restrictive.
If you’re ready to do the same, I want to share with you five simple and practical ways to develop healthy eating habits.
5 Practical Ways to Develop Healthy Eating Habits
1. Find Healthier Versions of the Foods You Love.
Finding healthier versions of the foods you love is key to developing healthier eating habits. Eating healthier is not about removing foods, but replacing foods. With amazing resources like Pinterest, you have access to thousands of recipes from food bloggers who specialize in everything from AIP to Keto.
Whether you're looking for a healthier way to make fried chicken or a vegan alternative to crab cakes, I highly recommend Pinterest to find healthier versions of your favorite recipes.
2. Eat Your Meals Around the Same Time Every Day.
Having consistency in your meal times is essential for ensuring you're properly fueling your body throughout the day. If you've ever found yourself skipping meals or forgetting to eat, it's a good chance you're not making consistent mealtimes a priority.
This is not to say you can't allow some flexibility in your eating schedule. Being intentional about eating around the same time every day is a habit that will help ensure you're keeping your body full and satisfied.
3. Keep Healthy Snacks Readily Accessible.
The key to snacking smarter is ensuring you have healthy options readily available. The biggest mistake people make is thinking that keeping "junk food" out of your home will stop you from visiting the nearest drive-through or ordering something from UberEats when cravings strike.
Whether you're a Craver eating personality or not ensuring you have healthy snacks available is one of the best things that you can do to develop healthier eating habits.
4. Drink Water to Stay Hydrated.
As dehydration is often confused with hunger drinking water is one of the best things that you can do to ensure your body is getting the fluids it needs. Depending on the season, location, and activity level it's not uncommon to mistake thirst for hunger.
That mistake often causes people to eat more than they intended. This is why regular hydration is non-negotiable because it's a key way to ensure you're giving your body more of what it needs.
5. Plan Ahead to Have Healthy Food Ready to Go.
Planning your meals ahead is one of the most effective ways for you to develop healthier eating habits. What meal planning allows you to do is be more mindful about your food choices when you're in the mindset to prioritize your nutrition.
In comparison, when you wait until you're hungry it's a good chance you'll choose what is convenient with little concern for nutrition. By making these choices ahead of time you can keep convenience, nutrition, and satisfaction at the top of your mind when you're eating on the go.
If you've ever found yourself struggling to develop healthier eating habits, I created the Discover Your Eating Personality and Perfect Eating Plan to help you make the process of healthy eating simple and easy. Take the free quiz today!