How to properly balance your diet

When it comes to maintaining long-term weight management goals, it’s not enough to simply cut calories, restrict foods and rely on ongoing self-restraint. Have you ever put something on the ‘naughty list’ of foods and found that it’s only made you want it more? That’s how we know that complete denial of foods is not sustainable long-term for most people. Not to mention the fact that even if you’re eating a healthy diet, there could still be nutrients missing that can prevent you from meeting your health goals!

We want you to focus on healthy habits that you can really stick to – like balancing your diet and learning to make intuitive choices about your food and supplements.

Learn how to plug nutritional gaps

Good nutrition comes from a spectrum of sources. It starts with the food you eat every day, but even well-balanced diets could leave you with nutritional gaps to fill. A meal that is high in vitamins could be lacking in minerals, or a high protein option might not have the healthy fats you need to keep you feeling your best.

Understanding how to make sure you’re giving your body the nutrients it needs to support your health is an important first step to ensure your diet is balanced. Where you do need extra support, nutritional supplements can come in handy.

For instance, a reliable breakfast of eggs, toast and bacon is a great way to provide energy that’ll power you through to lunch, but could be missing some vitamins that help support your health. So, you could try Forever Daily to make sure you’re getting 100% of your RDA of those all-important vitamins A, C, D, B12, as well as iron, calcium and zinc.

Or perhaps your lunch is a delicious, protein and nutrient-packed chicken, white rice and veggies. While healthy, it’s a little lacking in fibre, which is essential to a healthy balance diet. You can add some with a sachet of Forever Fiber, which gives you the equivalent of almost two slices of whole wheat toast without the calories. You can find more great examples in our latest copy of Aloe Life here.

Don’t restrict

If you’re guilty of starting a new health kick of a Monday, then find yourself eating a chocolate bar on Wednesday thinking “well, I’ve eaten this now, so I guess I should have a takeaway every night for the rest of this week, and start again next Monday” then this tip is most definitely for you.

Restriction only makes you want things more. Instead, try to let go of the ‘all or nothing’ mentality. Think about it: if you had a fantastically nutritious week other than that chocolate bar, you’re still doing incredibly well. But if you let the chocolate bar derail your entire week, you’ll find yourself feeling defeated, bloated and stuck in the same cycle.

Instead, set yourself up for a week where nothing is out of bounds, but challenge yourself to eat fruit as a snack instead, or pack more veggies onto your plate than you would normally. Chances are, these things will naturally prevent you from eating foods which are lower in nutrients anyway because you’ll feel fuller for longer. But even if you do eat a chocolate bar, or a bag of crisps, or have an evening glass of wine, you don’t have to feel guilty because everything is fine in moderation. Draw a line and move on – make sure your next meal is nutrient dense and emotionally fulfilling. You’ll have a better relationship with your food in no time.

Make healthy swaps

Recognise the times when you are usually after a pick-me-up. Need a morning snack? Why not swap your biscuits for some apple slices with peanut butter? Need to sweeten your tea? Trade sugar for natural Forever Bee Honey. Love a takeaway pizza? Make your own from scratch and know exactly what’s going into it – it’ll be miles healthier!

Calorie for calorie you might find that your healthier swaps are similar – a Forever Lite Ultra smoothie and a chocolate bar will come out roughly the same in a calorie count – but the nutrients are incomparable; let’s face it, you know which one will make you feel fuller for longer and nourish your body better.

Pay attention when you eat

Finally, know when to switch off your TV and put away your phone. Multi-tasking while eating means you don’t give your food the full attention it deserves, which not only means it may not emotionally satisfy you, but also means you’ll end up eating it faster. Instead, eat slowly and mindfully. It takes around 20 minutes for fullness signals to transmit from your stomach to the brain, so if you eat too fast, you’ll eat far more than you need.

Not only that, but if you have a family, eating together at the table is a great way to bond, and young children will pick up healthy eating habits this way, too. Win-win!

by Rachel Sharpe – Forever UK