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Tips for the Healthy Eating Beginner

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By India Reuben

CrossFit Algiers Intern

You want to eat healthier, but you don’t know where to begin. I get it. Getting healthier can be stressful, especially when you’re just starting out. You’re unsure of what you can do to keep yourself on track and successful.

I’m here to tell you that eating healthy does not have to be stressful and with proper preparation and a little help, you’ll be well on your way to living healthier and happier.

Here are my top 5 tips for getting started and staying on track with eating better.

Tip#1 –Meal Prep

Plan what you’re going to eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner for the week. Make sure you plan for well balanced meals. Protein, vegetable and a healthy carbohydrate. Prepping your meals ahead of time can ensure success. Invest in meal prep containers. Meal prep containers will help you in gauging portion sizes. If your goal is weight loss, mind your portions. If you can’t fit your meal inside a standard square container, then they are too big.

Tip#2- Track What You Eat

To understand what you’re eating and how much, you need to track all intake of food.  Tracking is an accountability tool that will give you a clear understanding of your eating habits and how to make them better. There are several inexpensive and free ways to track such as:

  • Keep a hand written food journal
  • Use app options such as MyFitnessPal or MyMacros+

Tip #3- Weigh and Measure

Invest in a good digital food scale. Doesn’t have to be expensive. The $20-$30 range will do. This will help you understand correct portion sizes. When first starting out, your eye isn’t trained to gauge what the proper portion measurements are by sight. Don’t be afraid to use the scale when preparing your meals. Other options to help are measuring cups and spoons.

Tip #4- Shake the Sugar and Salt

Watch your sugar and salt intake. Meaning alcohol, sodas, juices, energy drinks, cakes, pies, cookies, candy, chocolate, etc. Even some fruits are high in sugar. Though fruits have natural sugars, some fruits are higher in sugar than others. Stick to berries, apples, and citrus fruits. For your coffee or tea, try natural sweeteners like Stevia and Truvia. Watch the sodium. Sodium can cause you to hold onto water, which cause you to become bloated. Foods that are high in preservatives such as pre-packaged foods are always high in sodium or sugar. Nix table salt and go for a better option such as sea salt as well as seasonings like onion, garlic, and bell peppers.

Tip #5- Drink More Water

Your body is made of 60% of water and if you don’t intake enough, you can throw off your fluid balance. Water helps with portion control as well. Consuming a glass of water prior to a meal, will aid in helping you to become fuller faster so you don’t over eat. Water helps to rehydrate you, especially after a workout. Your muscles need water to replenish what was lost when you get sweaty. When your muscles don’t get what they need, they get tired. Lastly, water is great for detox and digestion of food. It can help in cleaning out the toxins that you intake daily from the environment and even the food you eat.

Keep these tips in mind and you are guaranteed success on your road to a healthier and happier you!