Tips For Eating Right

Useful tips for eating right

Load Up on Fruits & Vegetables

At present, only one in four Americans gets the 5 to 13 daily servings of fruits and veggies the USDA recommends. Simply upping your consumption of fruits and vegetables—foods packed with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants—helps to lower your risk of heart disease and diabetes.

Read Labels

When you pick up foods that have nutrition labels, make sure you always read them. Check the nutrition information and also look at what ingredients are in the product. A general rule: the simpler the ingredient list is to read, the better. The label’s a great spot to look out for trans fats—don’t just rely on the marketing that says “0 grams trans fats” but check to make sure there are no partially hydrogenated oils in the ingredient list.

Make Cooking Fun

Cooking should be relaxing, creative and delicious. If you’re not experienced in the kitchen, perhaps you cook the same few things over and over. Start broadening your skills by slowly adding new, easy recipes to your repertoire—pick one new recipe to try each week. The more things you cook, the more confident you’ll feel about experimenting and the more fun you’ll have in the kitchen.

Serve More Seafood

The American Heart Association recommends eating two servings of fish and seafood a week. Why? Seafood is a good lean source of protein. And many fish, especially fatty fish like salmon, tuna and sardines, have something that’s hard to get from other foods: omega-3 fatty acids and specifically DHA and EPA, healthy fats that have been linked to improving everything from heart health to brain functioning to depression. ©

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Keep a Well-Stocked Pantry

When your pantry is full of staples, you’ll find you won’t need to run to the store in the middle of cooking dinner to get a bottle of soy sauce. Plus it makes it easier to improvise a dinner on the fly when you don’t already have something planned. Ingredients like pasta, canned beans and canned fish can be the basis of spur-of-the-moment meals.

Eat What You Love

Eating well is not about deprivation—it’s about that good feeling you get when you eat something that is flavorful, wholesome and satisfying. No food should be off limits. Studies show that depriving yourself of the foods you love, especially in the name of dieting, may cause you to overeat later. Embrace a delicious and healthy way of eating that you can sustain for your whole life. When you bake, limit added sugars. (Added sugars of any kind—whether it’s corn syrup, white sugar, maple syrup or agave—all add calories and don’t offer any nutritional value.) Savor desserts so you really enjoy it without feeling guilty. Bottom line is that maintaining a healthy weight comes down to balancing the amount of calories you eat with the amount you expend during the day.