Incorporating a healthy diet is one of the most important things you can do for your body, and is essential when trying to lose weight. When it comes to nutrition, there are many different aspects to consider. The list below describes some simple ways to incorporate healthy habits into your daily routine in order to work towards optimal wellness.
- Come Back to Earth. Choose the least processed form of foods. The less processed the food is, the closer it is to its natural state, and the better it is for you.
- Eat a Rainbow Often. Aim to eat a variety of fruits and vegetables every day. This not only ensures you are getting the nutrients you need, but offers antioxidants and vitamins that can improve the immune system and ward off illness.
- The Less Legs the Better. Protein is critical in every diet, no matter how active you are. When thinking about protein, the less legs the animal has before you eat it, the better the source is. For example, fish, turkey and chicken are all excellent sources of protein, whereas red meat and pork products should be consumed in moderation.
- Eat Fats That Give Something Back. In the past it’s been embedded into our minds that all fat is bad; however, a diet that is too low in fat can actually be detrimental to your health. It is recommended that 20-35% of your total calories should come from healthy fats, such as nuts, seeds, olive oil, flax seed, and fish. The fats to avoid are trans fats and saturated fats.
- Three for Three. Combining the three main ingredients (carbohydrates, protein and fat) every three hours will help keep you on track and avoid extreme hunger. Keep healthy snacks readily available. Some examples include an apple with peanut butter, a small handful of mixed nuts, or carrots with hummus.
- Eat Breakfast Everyday. This one is extremely important. Eating breakfast gives the body the fuel it needs and can increase your metabolism, allowing you to burn more calories throughout the day.
- Hydrate. Just like no two people are alike, no two people have the same requirement for water. The old adage to drink 8 cups of water a day is not sufficient enough for most people. The recommendation is to drink 9 cups per day for females and 13 cups per day for males. If you are physically active, you need to drink more to compensate for the extra fluid loss. For a complete list of guidelines, click here.
- Don’t Waste Your Workout. What you consume directly after a workout is critical to optimizing the benefits of a training session. Choose a meal that blends carbohydrates and protein and consume it within 45 minutes after your workout. This allows the body to recover properly and can help performance during the following workout.
- Supplement Wisely. Choose a supplement that has a Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) symbol; it is free of banned substances and is accurate with the labeling. Visit the Public Health and Safety Organization for more information on supplements.
- Get Back In The Kitchen. Lack of time, convenience and price are just a few of the barriers to eating healthy, and the reason why more often than not we choose eating out over cooking for ourselves. Restaurants don’t take health needs or calories into consideration when creating their menus. The more you prepare your own food, the better off you are in terms of staying on track and achieving your health goals.
We Can Help
When it comes to nutrition, there is no one answer, one magic pill, one supplement or one tip to give you the results you are looking for. It involves learning about good nutrition and then consistently mastering these principles into daily life until they become a habit. If you need help, contact us to learn more or schedule an appointment with a peer coach or counselor. Your physical well being depends on it!
Contact VITAL WorkLife 24/7 for the support you and your loved ones need:
- EAP members call 800.383.1908 or contact through your VITAL WorkLife App
- Physicians/Provider Well Being Resources members call 877.731.3949 or contact through your VITAL WorkLife App