Why is it so important that we stick to a healthy and balanced diet? Has the whole world fallen prey to a marketing fad, or is there something truly beneficial to eating greens, lean proteins, and healthy fats? Without a shred of doubt, it’s the latter.
Eating healthy is the foundation, the pillar of self-care and a thriving, prosperous lifestyle – a lifestyle that will allow you to live out your true potential and become the person you deserve to be.
However, there is also no doubt that upholding a healthy and balanced diet over the years can be a challenging task. Sometimes, you don’t even know where to begin let alone how to keep it up and enjoy the journey! Let’s answer all of these questions today in order to help you build the healthy lifestyle you dream of.
Understand what healthy and balanced mean
First things first, you need to know exactly what healthy and balanced means, and what it definitely doesn’t mean – because most of the time, it can be quite difficult to discern between the truth, and a well-crafted marketing campaign. Let’s start with what a healthy diet is not.
A healthy and balanced diet is not a restrictive diet. It’s not a diet that excludes any food source, except the ones you cannot have because you’re allergic or intolerant. A healthy diet is not one that will restrict your calories either. Rather, it will help you optimize calories in order to reach your goals. It will allow you to make steady progress over time and maintain your healthy eating habits easily. A healthy and balanced diet will provide your body with the proteins, fats, and carbohydrates necessary to support all bodily functions.
Adapt the diet to your specific goals
In order to uphold a healthy and balanced diet over the course of a lifetime, you need to give it a purpose – you need to have a goal your diet will help you achieve. Aside from the obvious fact that the prospect of longevity and health should be enough to motivate you to maintain a healthy diet and throw in a few workouts a week, your diet should also help you achieve your physical health goals.
A balanced diet is a subjective concept, meaning that there is no one-size-fits-all type of a diet. Rather, you should tailor your nutritional plan according to what you want to achieve in life. For example, if you want to lose weight, then you should reduce your daily caloric intake.
If you’re a regular gym-goer and you want to put on some functional muscle mass, on the other hand, then increase your protein intake and add a few hundred calories to the daily menu. It’s these types of incremental changes that will make the diet ideal for your goals and your unique physiology.
Remain consistent no matter what
Consistency is the key to lifelong emotional, psychological, and physical health and well-being. Just like you should strive to uphold a healthy exercise program or a daily meditation schedule, so should you strive to uphold a healthy diet on a daily basis in order to reach your goals and maximize the potential of healthy and balanced eating.
Consistency is making sure you’re doing the small things you need to do every day in order to make a big impact on your life as a whole.
Yet sometimes, being consistent is impossible if you always have to cook and plan every meal. You can still remain consistent by sticking with healthy meal replacement options that fit your calories and daily macronutrients, something you can easily take to work with you or have on the go if you’re in a hurry.
Remember, it’s important not to skip your meals, not because it’s unhealthy, but because you can easily get off track with your nutrition and abandon your journey altogether.
It’s okay to indulge from time to time
People might tell you otherwise, but if you’re committed to your healthy diet regime, you can definitely treat yourself from time to time. This doesn’t mean that you should rob the Dunkin Donuts down the street, but it does mean that you can have your favorite guilty-pleasure food once a week. This is a good way to alleviate some of the pressure of sticking to a strict eating schedule, and it can be beneficial to your emotional and psychological well-being if you’re just starting out.
Listen to your body and be realistic
And finally, you need to know how this new diet is affecting you on the inside and out. There is no point in sticking with a diet that is making you feel miserable, or worse, is affecting your physical health in any way. Be sure to monitor your weight and energy levels over the weeks and months, and note down how you’re looking and feeling.
Visit your doctor and have all of the necessary bloodwork done after a couple of months to see if the diet is failing to supply your body with the nutrients necessary for health and longevity.
Upholding a healthy and balanced diet can be a cumbersome task, but only if you don’t know where to start or how to manage your new lifestyle. Don’t let yourself abandon your quest for lifelong health and happiness, but follow these steps instead and you will have no problem building the life you deserve.
I think the difficulty with most people is the consistency part. Many of us find it easy to get started, but the really hard part is staying consistent and sticking to a plan. Like getting up early, eating health every day or exercising everyday. That’s the hardest part of it I think.