Eating habits play a crucial role in your overall health, and opting for the best food for yourself needs proper planning. Healthy eating habits prevent various ailments like diabetes and high blood pressure. In addition to this, making constant small and periodic changes to your diet can help you eat healthier food and develop healthy lifestyle habits. Let’s read some facts about healthy eating.
Eating habits are an individual’s food choices that one prefers in their daily life, which differ from person to person. To develop healthy eating habits, you need to follow some basic steps that include small changes in your dietary habits; for example, the daily inclusion of fibre rich foods, unsaturated fats, and wholegrains in your meals.
Good eating habits develop over time if you follow a healthy regime daily. A combination of physical exercise and good eating habits can also prevent future health issues and help you maintain your emotional, physical, and psychological well-being. Daily consumption of health promoting foods and limited intake of fast foods and preservatives positively influence your health in many ways.
How eating habits affect your body
Healthy eating habits and food choices give you long-term health benefits and show positive physical and psychological health benefits. Below we have listed some benefits of practising healthy eating habits:
- Promote mental well-being: Scientific evidence has shown a positive association between healthy eating habits and your mental well-being. It improves cognition, mood, and memory performance.
- Physiological growth and development: Adequate consumption of carbohydrates, proteins, fats with micronutrients and water intake keeps your body healthy and promotes physical growth and development. Proteins are the building blocks of your body that help with the wear and tear of body cells; carbohydrates and fats provide energy and fullness.
- Keep diseases at bay: There is plenty of scientific evidence that says good food habits may aid in the reduction and prevention of obesity, high blood pressure, and diabetes. For a healthier lifestyle, limit your salt, sugar and processed food intake and include fresh fruits and vegetables that are beneficial to your health.
Healthy eating habits
It is well established that practising healthy eating habits daily gives you multiple health benefits. Hence, to achieve an optimum weight and a healthy lifestyle, it is important to change your food habits. Let’s read about some basic tips to be followed in your daily life: -
- Consume fruits and vegetables daily: It is always beneficial to include 5 different fruits and vegetables in your daily meal.
- Limit fat intake and saturated fats: Avoid vanaspati, lard and butter as they are high in saturated fats and increase your cholesterol level that may lead to heart disease and obesity.
- Control your portion: Portion control is a simple way to keep yourself healthy and avoid obesity.
- Drinking enough water: Drinking at least 8 to 10 glasses of water every day helps in eradicating the body's toxins. Low water consumption dehydrates your body that leads to weakness, low blood pressure, dizziness etc.
- Healthy snacks: In between meals, take a healthy snack to keep your hunger pangs away. Include nuts, seeds, and healthy smoothies in your diet.
- Protein intake: Always make sure to have a high protein diet that keeps you full for longer and repairs your body’s tissues faster.
- Limit Sugar Level: While sugar may give you a short burst of energy, what happens next is a significant drop in glucose, which leaves you exhausted.
Thus, adopting healthy eating habits and activities impacts your health positively. Make sure to develop these habits to live a longer and healthier life.
Changing food habits
It is important to change your food habits and establish a health-promoting behaviour. Below are some simple steps to inculcate healthy eating practices:
Diet related changes:
- Cooking practices: Always choose to cook your food either through steaming or boiling instead of consuming fried foods or high fat foods. This is critical to adapting to healthy food habits.
- High fats Vs low fat diet: Make sure to plan your food in a way that includes a low fat diet or meal. Avoid eating too much of high fat foods, snacks, or fried foods like pakoras, kachoris etc.
- Packed and processed food Vs homemade foods: Packed and processed foods are high in calories and often contain preservatives and additives.
Eating pattern or habit related changes:
- Eating fast: It is important to chew your food properly before you swallow it for better absorption of nutrients.
- Delay in taking meals: Always make it a practice to adhere to strict timelines for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. This promotes good digestion and easy absorption of food.
- Frequency of eating out vs. family meals together: It is always good to plan your family meals together at home and avoid eating out frequently. Even if you plan to eat out occasionally, make sure to opt for healthy choices like high protein meals or less fried meal options.
We all have different types of food habits. Adopting healthy food choices and changing food habits for your health is essential. You can choose from a variety of healthy food options like whole grains, oats, quinoa, sprouts, wholegrain pulses, high fibre fruits and vegetables like apples, papaya, and grapes. In case you are non-vegetarian, you may include chicken and poultry meals in your diet instead of red meat and high fat meats. To start with, try your hand at this creamy and appetising chicken curry.
A healthy diet with a moderate number of macronutrients (carbohydrates, proteins, and fats) and micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) supports your physiological health as well. Changing food habits to better ones not only provide you with a new energy but also keeps you full for long hours and aids in your bodily growth. Therefore, make sure to adhere to healthy types of food habits to enjoy better health.
Our environment, peer pressure, and the media also influence our eating habits. Before you indulge in any unhealthy dietary practises or habits, always think about your health and try opting for nutritious meals and healthy food habits.