Eating healthy foods is easier with these tips
With the obesity epidemic in the United States, people are beginning to realize the importance of watching what they eat. Eating poorly can lead to high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and weight gain, as well as heart disease and diabetes.
The Salter School of Nursing and Allied Health in Manchester, New Hampshire cares about the health of people in our community. We want to promote healthy eating and healthy lifestyles by sharing these healthy eating tips with you.
Remember, eating carefully is not only good for your waistline, but it is also good for your overall health. Our article is based on the recommendations from the American Heart Association. This advice can help you make healthy choices when deciding what to eat…and what not to eat.
1. Eat a rainbow of colors!
Eating fruits and vegetables is one of the most important parts of a healthy diet. Choose a variety of types so that you get a range of colors and thereby a range of nutrients. Try sweet potatoes, spinach, broccoli, peppers, tomatoes, peas, carrots, and onions—the list goes on and on! Prepare your veggies healthfully too. Avoid any unhealthy sauces, added sugars, or added salts.
2. Go for the fiber
Grains can be an important part of your diet too, but it’s important that they are whole grains, which contain more fiber then overly processed grains. Look for “whole wheat” or other whole grains as the top ingredient in your breads. Incorporate oatmeal into your breakfasts. Use whole grain brown rice instead of white rice. Limit processed snacks, as well as items with white flour and white sugar.
3. Eat healthier meats
Poultry and fish can be some of the healthiest meats, because they don’t have as much saturated fat as red meats and pork. Fish is especially healthy because of the omega-3 fatty acids. Be sure to remove the skin and prepare these meats in a healthy way, such as baking or broiling, so that you don’t add extra fats and salts. When you eat red meat, try to get lean cuts and prepare them in a healthy way.
4. Choose healthier fats
Not all fats are created equal. Choose monosaturated and polyunsaturated fats. These include vegetable-based oils (olive oil, canola oil, soybean oil, corn oil, etc.), fatty fish, avocados, peanut butter, and most nuts and seeds. Limit saturated fats such as fatty cuts of beef, lamb, pork, as well as butter, cheese, and other high-fat dairy products. Also try to eliminate trans fats. Trans fats are in shortening and products that contain partially hydrogenated or hydrogenated oils. Also choose skim or low-fat dairy products when possible.
5. Resist the sweets
The American diet tends to have far too much sugar. Try to satisfy your craving with healthier sweets like fresh fruit or a moderate amount of dried fruit. Cut back on foods and drinks that have added sugars, such as sodas and sports drinks. Even real fruit juice is high in sugar, so drink it only in moderation or not at all.
6. Move over salt--Choose healthier spices
If you eat a lot of processed foods and baked goods, you may be eating too much sodium. Sodium can contribute to high blood pressure. Look at the labels and choose foods with lower sodium content. Or try replacing packaged foods with foods you have made yourself. And replace your own salt shaker with other spices when possible.
7. Watch your portion sizes
Even if you are choosing healthy foods, you should still be careful about your portion sizes, especially if you are eating out at a restaurant, where portion sizes tend to be very large. Learning to eat in moderation takes time, but you will get the hang of it after a while.
8. Try new recipes
If these healthy eating tips have you scratching your head about what to make for dinner, try out some suggested recipes from the American Heart Association. The recipes show that healthy eating doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice flavor or variety. Give it a try. You might be surprised at how good healthy eating can be!
We hope these healthy eating tips set you off on the pathway to a healthier you!
This article was provided by the Salter School of Nursing and Allied Health, provider of career focused programs for Licensed Nursing Assistants, Patient Care Technicians, and Practical Nurses. Contact us online for more information, or visit us at our Manchester, NH campus.