Healthy Eating: Tips for Improving Nutrition, Weight and Meal Ideas

Healthy Eating

Get tips for better nutrition, weight loss, and meal preparation.

Are you perplexed by all the contradicting dietary advice out there about eating healthy?

Healthy dieting does not have to be difficult. Despite what some extreme diets may claim, we all need a good mix of nutrients in our meals to maintain a healthy body. Food categories should not be eliminated from your diet; instead, you should choose the healthiest and most balanced selections from each food group. It is your overall dietary pattern that is most essential to your overall health.

Below you will find several easy-to-follow healthy dieting tips to help you improve your diet. These simple steps and ticks will teach you how to plan, enjoy and keep to a healthy diet.

Balance, Balance and Balance

For healthier eating, make sure you are consuming a balanced and complete diet.

♥ A balanced, healthy diet consists of a 50-60 percent carbohydrate content, that is fruits, vegetables, breads, pastas and rice. Of this amount, 90 percent should be in the form of complex carbohydrates, which are whole grain products (brown rice, whole grain breads, pasta) and less than 10 percent from simple carbohydrates (candy, cakes, etc.).

♥ Compliment this with a diet that has a 20-30 percent fat content and finally balance your eating with 15-20 percent protein content, that is meats, soy and dairy products.

Avoiding Fat Food

Are you eating a lot of foods that are high in fat, especially saturated fat? If so, it would be wise to drop them for healthier eating.

The reason is high fat foods add excess calories to your overall diet, and they are typically high in saturated fat, which will raise the level of cholesterol in your blood and can increase your risk for heart disease.

♥ Avoid any food choices that have higher than 30 percent fat content for healthy dieting.

Food Prep Wisely

♥ For healthy dieting, begin preparing your foods in ways that help to remove fat, like baking, boiling, broiling, roasting or stewing.

♥ Never fry your food.

♥ Trim the fat off the meat and remove the skin and fat from poultry.

♥ Eat healthier food like fruits, vegetables, cereals, pasta, dried peas and beans; low-fat or nonfat dairy products, lean meat, fish, and skinless poultry.

♥ Begin reading food labels and avoid foods that are high in fat and calories.

♥ Also, ditch any foods that are high in sugars, such as pastries, candy bars, pies and cakes.

Analyze Your Unhealthy Patterns

Figure out the patterns that lead you to eating unhealthily and focus on exchanging those behaviors.

You should always plan, especially regarding meal preparation and healthy dieting. People who plan out their week are more likely to be successful than those who don't. Choose a day that works best for you to plan and stick to it every week.

Remodel Food Hotspots

♥ Find the areas in your life that you grab food items the most and "remodel" the foods that are available there to the healthiest selections.

♥ For example, move all the healthy options to the forefront of your refrigerator. Hide or move the processed options back and anything else you have no business eating.

♥ Make high caloric and comfort foods difficult to get to. You can even completely cleanse your cabinets and ditch the junk foods entirely if you are worried that "remodeling" is not enough.

Your Problem Hours Are Ruining Your Diet

Being an entrepreneur, I always hear that most of my time should be focused on that five percent of what truly grows my business. Well, the same principle can be applied to healthy dieting here in reverse.

♥ Focus on the 5% of your day that you make the most dietary mistakes and implement a "game plan" to change it.

For most, this typically happens after a long day when you are unwinding with your family.

Change that pattern.

A Grab Away

Keep healthy snacks and meal replacements at arm's length. Always have access to a healthy snack when needed.

Plan for All Your Meals

♥ Always think ahead of what you can do to make it easier to eat healthy.

For example, at a buffet table, choose wisely. At a friend's house, control your portion sizes. When you get hungry between your meals, try drinking a glass of water or eating a piece of fruit, and stay away from the kitchen. If you really desire fattening food, eat just a little bit and then leave it alone. However, if you don't trust yourself with it, don't eat any at all. Instead of overeating, find healthier ways to deal with your stress and boredom. For example, try taking up a new hobby or starting a walking plan.

Read Nutrition Labels

♥ Avoid foods high in trans fat (bad for you).

♥ Look for the words hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated for a "dead giveaway".

♥ Also, for healthy dieting, ditch foods high in sugars. Some keywords to look out for are glucose, sucrose, maltose or the current media sensation, high fructose corn syrup.

Detox Your Body the Natural Way

Scratch the cleanse products and detox pill hoopla.

♥ Do it naturally by consuming five servings of fruits and veggies daily for better health.

♥ Get hydrated and drink more water for a healthier diet.

Got Vitamins?

Take a good multivitamin to ensure you are getting enough vitamins and minerals, especially when in a calorie deficit.

Pack and Snack

♥ Set yourself up for success by making healthy dieting always accessible.

Use pre-made or nature's best creations like fruits, vegetables, salads, beans, nuts and seeds. Protein bars, whole grain-based foods and lean protein sources are great choices also. Load your fridge with them. Fill your cabinets. Pack your own lunch. Have a healthy snack drawer at work.

Eat to Fuel, Not for Comfort

Do you struggle with emotional eating or using food as a reward?

♥ Either way, write down a list of planned exercises that you will use instead.

♥ Next time you have a bad day, try going for a walk, reading your favorite book or petting your animals instead of eating poorly.


Cut down on processed foodstuffs and replace at least one daily meal with a bowl of steamed vegetables. This is especially important for those looking to lower their sodium intake and total calories.

Learn Some More From Your Past Dietary Mistakes

Don't let them predict your future. Write down your previous eating blunders and what you are going to do differently this time for your health.

Don't Take Too Long on Your Squirts

Use spray while meal prepping rather than pouring in oil.

There are roughly 120 calories in each tablespoon of oil.

♥ Cooking spray has only one calorie per squirt.

♥ Most importantly, one squirt is defined by the duration of 1/3 of a second.

♥ That's one fast squirt, and most people hold down that trigger for much longer.

♥ Keep in mind, 35 seconds of squirting and you are over 100 calories.

♥ Please just be mindful of your squirts if you want to eat healthier.

Make Your Dentist Proud

Each soda has around 150-180 empty calories per can.

Nutrient wise, you would be better off eating dog food, but don't do that either. Keep your soda intake as low as possible for a healthy diet.

Load Your Plate With Green Stuff

Make Popeye proud. Load your plate with green stuff.

Make it a habit to eat a large green salad and veggies before or with every dinner.

♥ Pick darker green spinach and lettuces. They are just loaded with vitamins and minerals.

♥ Also, watch out for calorie sabotaging with dressings and other salad add-ons. Have your dressing on the side and only dip occasionally.

Buffet Tips

When eating at a buffet, things can go awry quickly.

♥ First, drink two glasses of water before beginning the festivities.

♥ On approach, fill your plate with watermelon, fruit, green salad, and any other veggies on site.

♥ Ask the server if anything is being grilled.

♥ Avoid most of the protein sources and breaded items as nearly all are fried and loaded with calories.

♥ Now, get the heck out of there after round one.

If you are stuck with a friend who is committed to getting their value from artery clogging food, take a long break while chewing on some mints. Let the food settle and try not to go back.

Cut Down on Sodium

Cut down on sodium and your heart will love you for it.

Your body will hold less water weight just for doing so.

The dash diet rocks for those looking to shed some sodium in their meal planning efforts and has all kinds of eye-opening tips and stats for healthy dieting.

Up Your Fruits and Veggies

Have a plan in place to up your fruits and vegetables. You will reap so many health benefits just for doing so.

♥ Shoot for 5 total servings daily for the best health results.

Healthier Food Selection

Switch to the good stuff.

Eat nuts and whole grains instead of processed foods and snacks.

Eat Out Less Frequently

Eat out less frequently.

You already know that eating out at restaurants can be a dietitian's worst nightmare.

Way too much food, fats and oils used in the preparation, can all equate to a caloric apocalypse.

♥ Ask the server if they have a healthy section or if they have any listing of calories.

♥ Avoid eating anything that is fried or sugary.

♥ Make selections of leaner cut meats like chicken breast without skin.

♥ Don't finish your entire plate and take at least half home or leave it for the birds. Portion control is paramount when eating out for a healthier diet.

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