- Food and drink considered in terms of its qualities, composition, and its effects on health
- The foods eaten, as by a particular person or group
- Food or feed habitually eaten or provided
- A particular selection of food, especially as designed or prescribed to improve a person's physical condition or to prevent or treat a disease.
- Such a selection or a limitation on the amount a person eats for reducing weight: No pie for me, I'm on a diet.
Notice how four of these five definitions have nothing to do with restriction? Food is historically a source of togetherness, happiness and health. So why is it so often viewed as the enemy, an element of life that is feared, shunned or binged on.
The perfect diet? The right foods, in the right portions, for you. This manner of thinking is an approach that will serve you for a lifetime.
The Basics of Changing to a Healthy Eating Pattern:
- Eat regularly, consciously, and at a moderate pace (including breakfast)
- Drink more water (minimize coffee, alcohol and pop)
- Pay attention to portion sizes, scale down if needed
- Take seconds of veggies and fruit before seconds of the main course
- Choose “whole” over “processed” foods
- Buy more vegetables and fruits, and keep them handy
- Choose in-season, local and fresh produce when it's available, and flash-frozen unseasoned fruit and veggies the rest of the time
- Rethink your protein requirements - most of us eat far too much
- Buy less meat (make it a “special occasion” food or part of a "mixed plate", not a central component of the plate)
- Use less sugar, salt and cooking fat in your recipes (add flavour with herbs and spices)
- Plan your meals and shopping trips with a weekly meal plan and grocery list
- Prepare most of your meals at home, and pack a lunch when you can
- Be adventurous with new food choices and cooking methods
- Treat yourself regularly, but don’t indulge in anything you don’t enjoy 100%
- Don’t expect to be perfect - perfection leads to boredom
- Ask for help when you need it
- Surround yourself with people who support your healthier lifestyle and be willing to teach those who want to learn
Above all... enjoy the deliciously healthy journey you’re on!