How to Make Healthy Eating Sustainable

How to Make Healthy Eating Sustainable

Here’s a great rule to live by: If you can’t see yourself on this diet in one, two or three years, then it’s not right for you.

Far too often, people go on extreme diets they can’t maintain, which means they never actually develop long-term, healthy eating habits.

There are some frightening weight gain statistics showing that most people regain all the weight they lost soon after attempting a weight loss diet (33Trusted Source).

As always, balance is key. Unless you have a specific disease or dietary requirement, no food needs to be off limits forever. By totally eliminating certain foods, you may actually increase cravings and decrease long-term success.

Basing 90% of your diet on whole foods and eating smaller portions will allow you to enjoy treats occasionally yet still achieve excellent health.

This is a far healthier approach than doing the opposite and eating 90% processed food and only 10% whole food like many people do.

BOTTOM LINE:
Create a healthy diet that you can enjoy and stick with for the long term. If you want unhealthy foods, save them for an occasional treat.
Consider These Supplements
As the name suggests, supplements are meant to be used in addition to a healthy diet.

Including plenty of nutrient-dense foods in your diet should help you reverse deficiencies and meet all your daily needs.

However, a few well-researched supplements have been shown to be helpful in some cases.

One example is vitamin D, which is naturally obtained from sunlight and foods like oily fish. Most people have low levels or are deficient (34Trusted Source).

Supplements like magnesium, zinc and omega-3s can provide additional benefits if you do not get enough of them from your diet (14Trusted Source, 35Trusted Source, 36Trusted Source).

Other supplements can be used to enhance sports performance. Creatine, whey protein and beta-alanine all have plenty of research supporting their use (37, 38, 39Trusted Source).

In a perfect world, your diet would be full of nutrient-dense foods with no need for supplements. However, this isn’t always achievable in the real world.

If you are already making a constant effort to improve your diet, additional supplements can help take your health a step further.

BOTTOM LINE:
It is best to get most of your nutrients from whole foods. However, some supplements can be useful as well.
Combine Good Nutrition With Other Healthy Habits
Nutrition isn’t the only thing that matters for optimal health.

Following a healthy diet and exercising can give you an even bigger health boost.

It is also crucial to get good sleep. Research shows that sleep is just as important as nutrition for disease risk and weight control (40Trusted Source, 41Trusted Source).

Hydration and water intake are also important. Drink when you’re thirsty and stay well hydrated all day.

Finally, try to minimize stress. Long-term stress is linked to many health problems.

BOTTOM LINE:
Optimal health goes way beyond just nutrition. Exercising, getting good sleep and minimizing stress is also crucial.
Take Home Message
The strategies outlined above will drastically improve your diet.

They will also boost your health, lower your disease risk and help you lose weight

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