Look – we all know that we should eat better, but who has the time??! If that sentiment has crossed your mind, this post will help you find the time to improve the quality of what you put into your mouth on a daily basis.
Healthy Eating: Starting the Transition
Eating ‘healthy’ is known to dramatically improve our health. Everyday, new scientific evidence shows us that eating nine (that’s 9!) servings of fruits and vegetables daily, choosing whole-grains over processed grains, eating raw nuts and seeds, limiting red meat and processed meats, decreasing our caloric intake and eliminating trans-fats and hydrogenated fats and oils can have a profoundly positive effect on our health.
But many of us feel we don’t have the time, energy or desire for all this change.
The good news is it’s not an all or nothing proposition. No matter what our lives are like, there is always room for improvement. And any positive change is good.
Maybe it’s eating an extra fruit a day or cooking food in a different way, or maybe it’s trying a new food at the grocery store or restaurant that we haven’t tried before. To make this transition to healthier eating easier, we have compiled some of the common obstacles that get in the way of good nutrition and what you can do to overcome these road blocks.
Eating Healthy for Busy Bees
The most common excuse we hear for not eating well is that people are just too busy. The demands of work, family, and community can keep people from preparing healthy meals, but they don’t have to.
The solution isn’t to find more time; it is to work with the schedule you have. The minutes spent perusing fast-food or vending machine options could be used to visit the grocery store, where you can pick up prepared salads, pre-washed and cut fruits and vegetables, soups, low-calorie and low-fat frozen meals, yogurt, granola and raw nuts and seeds.
There may be a bit more effort involved in shopping at the supermarket, but wasteful hours of worry about flab, low energy and decreased health do tend to go away with healthy eating – it’s all a choice. With well-balanced meals, we usually feel more positive about ourselves and our surroundings.
Here are some more healthy tips for busy bees:
- Cook a bigger batch of food on the weekends, and refrigerate or freeze for weekday consumption.
- Set an alarm for mealtimes. Even if you’re buried in a project, don’t skip meals; designate a time to eat.
- Try not to do anything else while eating. Mindless consumption prevents the enjoyment of food. When that happens, people tend to eat more and eat unhealthy alternatives (i.e., don’t eat in front of the TV/phone/tablet).
- Put fresh or dried fruit where you can see it to remind yourself of your goal to eat healthy. Bananas, grapes, and apples make handy and nutritious snack items.
- If at a restaurant, turn down the super-size option, and choose baked and broiled instead of fried.
- Order the lunch portion at dinnertime, and hold off on fatty condiments.
- Keep handy snacks around, such as fruits, dried fruits, nuts, seeds, trail mix, carrot or celery sticks, wraps, and sandwiches.
- If you need to free up some time, take an information break 1-2 days/week, meaning, no news feeds/shows/publications for an entire day. If something happens that is really important, it will still be important the next day. Use this time to shop for groceries and prepare food.