One of the best ways to control what you eat and how much you eat is to plan out your meals ahead of time. Studies by the American Dietetic Association has shown that a nutritionally complete plan offers greater improvements in lipids, blood sugars, homocysteine and weight loss than the typical diet therapy. Homocysteine is a amino acid and breakdown product of protein which can cause an increased risk of heart disease in high concentrations. The nutritional improvements are due to the fact that following a meal plan sets out exactly what and how much you are consuming. This is the easiest way to keep track of how much macronutrients you are consuming on a daily basis without the tediousness of tracking and recording each time you eat.
For those of you who think making complex meals is too big of a challenge, making healthy meals are actually relatively simple to make. There are plenty of simple, free and healthy recipes online and there are some great recipes as well in our Running to Lose Weight application if you need some help getting started.
Your meals should typically consist of complex carbohydrates, lean proteins and fiber that give your body that sense of being full for a longer period of time to prevent overeating.
You can also try to stay away from sauces as they tend to contain empty calories and sugars that your body does not necessarily need. Some people cringe at the thought of eating or cooking without sauces as they believe that eating healthy means eating bland food, but that is not always the case.
You can use a plethora of spices and herbs to enhance your meal and make it fit to your taste. It is also significantly better for you to season your food with herbs and spices because they can be natural sources of antioxidants over sauces which add nothing of nutritional value to your meal. In addition to being antioxidants and making your meal taste great, some spices such as ginger, coriander, cumin, turmeric, chili and peppercorn can enhance the digestion of dietary fats and carbohydrates.
Additionally, when cooking your meal, incorporating the right oils in your foods can make a significant difference in the results you see. While oils and fats are needed by our body, it is important that we limit our intake to only fats that are good for our body.
A couple good options for cooking are virgin olive oil, coconut oil, flaxseed oil or avocado oil as they will provide your body with the right type of fats in moderate amounts.
Eating healthy does not have to be a daunting task, but it can be something you enjoy while reaping the benefits. It is definitely easier to be consistent in your plan if you meal prep for the week ahead of time so that you remove any excuses you might make to cheat on your plan.
The Argus community is full of wonderful and inspiring people embarking on their own unique fitness journey. If you, or someone you know, have a great story to share, we would love to hear from you. Contact us by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
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