Written by Wendy Lord (RD)SA

 

Healthy eating is a lifestyle.

Habits take time to form. Changing habits takes just as long.

Any healthy eating plan involves a certain degree of change.

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Whether you are starting a new diet in order to lose weight or to improve your health there are a few simple guidelines to start following before a set diet plan will be of any use:

Always eat breakfast.

It really is the most important meal of the day. It is the best way to boost your metabolism first thing in the morning. If you do not normally eat breakfast, start with a small meal e.g. fruit and a small yoghurt.

Eat regularly

Eat regularly throughout the day to keep your metabolism up and running. Eat at least 3 balanced meals per day. Some people can’t make it from breakfast to lunch and from lunch to supper without eating anything. If you need to snack make sure you choose low fat choices such as provitas with low fat cottage cheese, fruit, yoghurt, fresh vegetables or a handful of nuts.

Drink plenty of water.

Water is involved in a number of bodily processes and needs to be replaced. Aim for 6 to 8 glasses per day. You may need more if it is very hot or if you are exercising.

imagesKeep sweet foods for treats and special occasions

eg sweets, chocolates, cakes, biscuits and desserts. These foods may make you feel good temporarily but they just pile on extra energy.

Eat more unsaturated fat than saturated fat.

Saturated fat has been linked to high blood cholesterol levels. Unsaturated fats such as Omega-3 fatty acids help to control blood cholesterol levels, improve weight loss efforts and they have an anti-inflammatory effect.

Eat more chicken and fish

Eat more chicken and fish than red meat. It is leaner and easier to digest.

Eat plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables.

Aim for at least 5 servings per day.

Exercise!

If you have not been getting any, start now. Start slowly and increase the amount of exercise you do until you are exercising for about half an hour a day

Enjoy your food!

A healthy diet does not have to be boring. Experiment in the kitchen with herbs, spices, lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, grilling, poaching… Make it interesting.

 

Wendy Lord (RD)SA