Everyone wants to live a healthy and happy life. However, doing so is difficult when your diet consists of junk food, sugary drinks, saturated fat and carbs. You only get one body, so maybe it’s time you start treating it with the respect it deserves! Don’t let your crappy diet hold you back from living your best life.
Valley has compiled 10 easy ways to clean up your diet and live a healthier lifestyle.
Only drink water.
You will be amazed at how much better you will look and feel by solely drinking water. Cutting out all of those sugary drinks will do wonders for your body, and your body will thank you for it. Not only will you feel more hydrated and energized as a whole, but your skin may also clear up!
Make small substitutions.
Ask for nonfat milk in your Starbucks latte that you get every day. Order veggies with your dinner instead of fries. Go for the fruit cup instead of the cookie. It’s the little things that all add up in the end.
Swap white/whole wheat bread for multigrain bread.
Don’t be fooled. Just because something is “whole wheat” doesn’t mean that it’s good for you. In fact, according to Authority Nutrition, “The large spikes [in blood sugar levels] are followed by rapid drops which tend to stimulate hunger and call for another high-carb meal.” As for white bread? That just consists of bleached flour— AKA zero nutritional value whatsoever.
Ditch the bread altogether.
If you can’t fully commit to going full on bread-less (understandable), try taking the top bun/piece of bread off of every sandwich that you eat. It’s a small thing that you can do that can make a monumental difference in the end. Imagine taking one piece of bread off every meal you eat in the next month. That’s saving you a ton of carbs!
Go easy on the sauce.
Ranch dressing is a hot commodity these days. From pizza to chicken nuggets to fries, people will dump ranch on just about anything. How would you feel if I told you that just two tablespoons of ranch amounts to 150 calories and 16 grams of fat? Yikes. Sauces like ketchup and BBQ might be the better option in this scenario, but be warned— they are loaded with sugar.
The more color on your plate, the better.
That’s right. Create the rainbow. More colors means more vitamins and more nutrients. Fill up your plate with as many vegetables as you can manage to fit.
Treat yourself, but don’t overdo it.
Everyone deserves a treat once in a while, but don’t go overboard! Self-control is key. If you’re going to order the bowl of queso and chips, maybe you shouldn’t get the fries with your sandwich. If you’re going to have the loaded baked potato, maybe you shouldn’t order the brownie for dessert. Balance out your portions.
Replace pasta with veggie noodles.
Sure, pasta is delicious, but sadly it is just another one of those foods with almost no nutritional value. Zoodles (zucchini noodles) are all the rage these days, so why not give them a try next time you find yourself craving pasta? They taste the same and are so much better for you.
Say “adios” to butter.
Butter is the heart’s worst nightmare— completely loaded with salt and saturated fat. Luckily, there are many alternatives, such as “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter”, “Olivio” or even simply using avocado (a much healthier spread) instead.
Eat fro-yo instead of ice cream.
Frozen yogurt, AKA fro-yo, has almost everything in common with ice cream except the fat and sugar content. Switching to froyo instead of ice cream will save you countless grams of fat in the long run. Load your froyo with fresh fruit to make it even tastier.
Valley is going to try to clean up our diets at the dining hall this fall. Are you? Tweet us @ValleyMag and let us know how it goes!