When you're looking to change your lifestyle, taking on new healthy eating habits might feel daunting at first. But making an effort to change your food choices over time can make a huge impact on your overall wellness and your weight loss goals.
Steal these simple habits that naturally healthy eaters practice every day, so you can start living a more nutritionally balanced life.
1. They move every day.1 of 13
Your body was made to move, and the healthiest people get in at least 30 minutes of exercise each day. Daily exercise may sound like a daunting task, but even a short walk around the block, a dip in the pool or play time with your little ones counts as movement.
Remember: You don't need a gym or a rack of weights to move your body. Start with what you enjoy.
2. They drink water first thing in the morning.2 of 13
Keeping water on your nightstand is the surest way to start your morning off right. Water wakes up your digestive system and helps with dehydration that naturally occurs while you're sleeping. Keeping water nearby at all times, not just in the morning, is also a good practice for general health.
3. They freeze food for later.3 of 13
Freezing food is as good for healthy meal prep as it is for locking in those fruits and veggies at peak nutrition. One of the best habits of healthy eaters is that they keep their freezers stocked with the good stuff, so a nutritious meal is just a microwave-minute away.
Bonus: Freezing foods will save you money since you'll throw away fewer spoiled items.
4. They order "on the rocks."4 of 13
For special occasions, you may be inclined to forget the calories lurking in those delicious mixed drinks. What makes them so good? Sugar! Try skipping the sodas, and adding a little ice so you'll consume less.
5. They don't obsess about the scale.5 of 13
How much you weigh on any given day will not give you the whole picture of your health. Get in tune with your body, and think of your progress more in terms of how clothes fit, your overall energy and any blood tests that come from your doctor's office.
6. They order dressing on the side.6 of 13
Even if you're not keeping a steady eye on calories, the nutritional contents of most cream-based dressings are concerning. Simply ordering dressings on the side at restaurants is a great way to improve your health, as many establishments tend to overdo it on food additives.
7. They cook at home.7 of 13
It doesn't matter how nutritious your meals are when dining out, there is no substitution for home cooking. Healthy eaters tend to cook most of their meals at home where they can control what goes into their food and how much.
Short on time? Prep as many of your meals as possible at the beginning of the week, and use your freezer to make them last.
8. They eat until satisfied.8 of 13
Those who eat healthy also listen to their bodies when it's time to stop the meal. Consistently eating until you can't anymore is a sure way to expand your stomach to an uncomfortable size.
Listen to your body's cues instead of your head's dialogue about what you can and can't have, how much money you're paying or what other people will think.
9. They enjoy snacking.9 of 13
Snacking has a bad reputation, but healthy eaters know smart snacking is a great habit to have. Smart snacking means snacking on foods packed with protein and healthy fats that will rev up your metabolism and keep your hunger at bay throughout the day. Think: nuts, seeds, whole grains, cheese or jerky. Just watch for added salts and sugar.
10. They prioritize sleep.10 of 13
The jury is still out on how much sleep people actually need to function optimally, but most experts agree that 7 to 8 hours of shut-eye each night is ideal for adults.
What's even more important than the amount of time you sleep? The quality of sleep. Make sure you're consistent in both your bedtime and morning routines and keep gadgets away from the bed.
11. They remember their mental health.11 of 13
Healthy eaters know good mental health is congruent with physical health. Keeping a journal to express feelings is an awesome way to get out any of the day's frustrations. Don't forget about gratitude either. Studies show that those who practice gratitude have fewer visits to the doctor and exercise more.
12. They always remember balance.12 of 13
No one food will ruin everything, and healthy eaters know indulging every once in a while is part of living a balanced life. Don't judge yourself for the occasional treat. Enjoy it and eventually get back to your regular routine without holding onto any guilt.