It can be overwhelming to sift through the extensive information about healthy eating. Just when we think we have a handle on what is healthy we are inundated with new studies about good fats and bad fats or the potential health benefits of dark chocolate or red wine. While news sources are always seemingly brimming with the latest in dietary trends, it can be easy to become confused to the point of not bothering to take any action to make improvements about what we eat.
Don’t let too much information distract you from making some changes to your diet. A few steps, a few additions, a little bit of awareness have an incremental impact, which can lead to the bigger changes you want to make. Some goals are easy, and some take a little effort. But as we often hear today, you do you, and with some modifications, your eating habits will improve, and you will enjoy the results.
If you're daunted by completely switching up your diet, start by switching particular recipes ingredients with healthy alternatives, such as your baking flour. Many healthy baking recipes can be achieved with a few simple substitutes, like flour and sweetener, that don't affect flavor. Using the healthiest flour for baking, you can enjoy your favorite treats without throwing your health goals off track.
Drink More Water
This is one of those easy changes. Water fills us up to help prevent overeating, lubricates our bodies inside and out, flushes out toxins, and quenches our thirst. Say goodbye to sugary, empty-calorie drinks like sodas and sweet teas. Clear, clean water is truly our life force that is a vital part of a healthy diet.
Mom Said to Eat Your Veggies…and She Was Right
What she really meant was to ramp up the servings of vegetables and fruits you eat every day. These foods are nutrient-dense, delicious, and easy to prepare. When assembling your plate for lunch or dinner make sure that half of that plate is vegetables and fruits. This helps with both portion control and nutritional value.
Maybe you get bored with the same old apples and carrots. Have some fun and add some selections you’ve never tried or maybe never heard of. Shop at grocery stores and farmers’ markets that carry local produce as well as more exotic selections. Have you tried a pomegranate or a mango? What about heirloom tomatoes or kale? When doing your food shopping each week add one new vegetable and fruit you’ve never tried to expand your nutritional palette.
Some Herbs and Spices
You want to reduce ingredients like salt, sugar, and fat, but maybe are hesitant because you worry about eliminating flavor. As healthy food options at grocery stores grow by leaps and bounds so does the variety of familiar and less well-known seasonings. Increasing the number of flavor options and combinations can open up an entirely new world of cooking techniques and cuisines.
Think about the herbs and spices you already know. Use them liberally in your meal preparation and you won’t miss added sugar or salt. Heady herbs like rosemary and tarragon add dimension to entrees like chicken and fish. The delicate scent of lavender can infuse baked goods with the lightest of flavors.
Just like embracing a new repertoire of vegetables and fruits, you can have the same fun with herbs and spices from around the globe. You could purchase ready-made curry powder or create your own version with its combination of spices. Have you ever tasted the richness of berbere? It is a staple flavor from the Horn of Africa countries and brings an orange-hued depth of hot tanginess to both meats and vegetables.
So add one or two new herbs and spices to your menu each week and your taste buds, as well as your health, will reach new levels of culinary enjoyment.
Recycle Your Recipes
If you enjoy cooking then you probably have a selection of recipes that are your tried and true favorites. Even though you probably know most by heart a few adjustments here and there can help you make the healthy changes you want in your diet. You can easily add more vegetables like spinach or squash to pasta entrees like lasagna. Include fruits as part or all of your dessert and substitute Greek yogurt for condiments like sour cream or salad dressing.
And while you are adding more interesting vegetables, fruits, herbs, and spices to your meals seek out new recipes as well. It won’t take long before you discover new favorites to prepare and share.
Establishing some smart yet manageable eating goals has the potential to improve your physical health while being delicious and enjoyable. You won’t miss what you’ve left behind. But you will remember how it feels to have a healthy body, a clear mind, and the wisdom to practice healthy behaviors with every meal we eat.
Create healthy baking recipes by replacing processed, white baking flour with a healthy alternative. You’ll find that the healthiest flour for baking makes healthy eating a breeze, without affecting the flavor or texture of your food.