How to transit yourself into a healthy and sustainable lifestyle.

Realizing the road to a healthy life is not a race but a marathon and things automatically start getting easier…

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When you consider the unhealthy eating habits of a person, consider their dietary foundations. How has their surrounding been affecting them of what they put in their mouth.

The foundation of your nutrition habits generally start in early childhood. You were taught to clean your plate, no matter the portion size, and eat three to four meals a day. These were well-intended guidelines from your caregivers, but they may contribute to your inability to eat less food more frequently.

If you were brought up in the era of microwaves and convenience foods, then you learned processed foods were quick and tasty. What you did not know was these foods lacked nutritive value.

Early eating habits paved the way for your current choices, but you do not have to remain tied to these foundations, especially if your health is at stake.

Misinformation and Attitude
It is difficult to understand what the best or healthiest nutrition habits are when numerous diets are advertised as the best way to get healthy.

You choose microwave meals marketed as healthy instead of those with high fat content, but the problem with frozen or packaged foods is it lacks nutrition from vitamins, minerals and macronutrients. The packages say healthy, yet the food is not because it is processed and has added ingredients that virtually cancel out the healthy aspects of the meal. It is confusing and complicated, which might make you want to stick with what you know instead of changing.

You decided to try different diets or change your eating habits, but are overwhelmed by conflicting nutrition information in the media.

Low Motivation 
‘You change behaviors as your level of motivation and understanding changes.’

You start out precontemplative , which means you know you do not eat healthy but it is not causing you any noticeable distress to want to change. You continue to hear about health in the news and start contemplating what you can do different, but you still are not sure. Gradually, you may seek support or additional information to help you prepare for change. At this stage of preparation, you may start buying new food items or cutting back on junk food, but you are not quite ready to totally immerse yourself in good health.

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Slow Change 
After a while of thinking and making subtle changes finally deciding to take action, you increase your fruit and vegetable intake.

Here, eat baked foods instead of fried or prepare fresh lunches for work instead of going to the fast food restaurant. The actions you take will meet with physical visible results, such as feeling emotionally better, weight loss and lowered blood pressure. This will motivate you to continue your new healthier eating habits.

However, some people do not get the level of results they want quickly with slow change and this can deter further progress. But stay true to your process and keep putting in the work. You will not necessarily see great results instantly. Remember that it took you a long time to add those extra pounds so it will definitely take some time to shed them off. Believe in yourself and do not give up.

Its important to reward your slow change every step of the way so you remain motivated to strive for good health.

Eating healthy involves getting the necessary daily calories you need for energy as well as additional nutrients from vitamins, protein and carbohydrates.

Choose fresh foods such as vegetables, fruits and whole grains for healthy energy instead of boxed, canned, frozen or processed foods. Eat fresh fish and chicken instead of high volumes of red meat to cut down on your saturated fat intake. Use olive oil instead of lard, butter or margarine. Limit your consumption of sweet treats and eat fruit as snacks or dessert instead. Choose low-fat dairy as a calcium source and read nutrition labels to measure the amount of cholesterol, saturated fat and calories in foods you eat frequently. Consult your physician about a healthy diet plan for your condition and add daily exercise as part of a healthy lifestyle.

Always remember we all start somewhere. Comparing results with other people will only lead to dissatisfaction in your results no matter how much hard work you put in.

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