In a world full of all sorts of conflicting diet advice, finding a balance in your traditional choices can be nothing short of a challenge. Sometimes the information that comes at you is so conflicting that it can make your head spin. And from carbs to fats, to proteins, everyone seems to have an opinion on which one is bad or good for you.
The real truth is that elimination diets, although they may temporarily work, are not a long-term solution. After all, can you imagine living in an assisted living facility one day eating nothing but nuts and bacon? These extreme diets aren’t sustainable.
The secret to long term success is a well-balanced diet and a harmonious relationship with what you eat. Here are five secrets for keeping a well-balanced diet that leaves you looking and feeling great.
Variety is Key
It’s important that you eat a wide variety of foods from different food groups. You need plenty of vegetables and fruits, as well as different types of protein. The more you vary your diet, the more you’ll ensure that your body takes in all of the essential nutrients that it needs.
While what you eat is undoubtedly crucial, the amount of what you eat is equally as important. Portions matter when it comes to maintaining a balanced diet. In other words, you can enjoy so-called unhealthy foods once in a while as long as you eat them in reasonable portions.
The idea is to listen to your body and eat only what you need instead of what you want. Eating slowly instead of stuffing everything into your mouth will allow your body to realize that it’s full and doesn’t need to continue eating. This won’t just avoid overindulgence and consequently weight gain, but it will also prevent the discomfort of digestion issues.
Drink Plenty of Water
So many people are focused on foods as a part of a balanced diet, however, what you drink is also a part of your diet. Instead of filling up on sugary juices or sodas, make sure that you incorporate plenty of water.
Water is essential for proper digestion, and absorbing the nutrients that you eat. Not to mention, water can help you stay full longer. There are many studies that show that people who overeat are often mistaking thirst for hunger.
The next time you feel hungry, but it’s not anywhere near meal time, have a big glass of water and notice how you feel. You might be surprised to find that you weren’t hungry at all, but rather thirsty! Besides, drinking plenty of water goes beyond benefitting your diet— it can also improve the overall appearance of your skin.