It’s February Heart Month, and a cardiologist and I were lamenting the fact that most people know what they should eat to be healthy, but rarely do they actually achieve that goal. You know how it goes: you open the latest magazine, or read up online, but two weeks later, are you still practicing those healthy tips you read about? Here are some “doable” tips that can make a difference:
1. Plan what you are going to eat for the day. Pack a lunch that you have prepared when you are NOT hungry, and throw in some extra nutrition for snacks. You’ll avoid “impulse eating” when the office calls out for Chinese.
2. Plan to eat five or six smaller meals, instead of the three feasts we are accustomed to eating every day. Stoking the fire often makes it burn hotter, and it is the same with our metabolisms.
3. Literally take a picture of your plate. Is it at least half of the plate covered by colorful, non-starchy vegetables? Green, not white, should dominate your plate.
4. Choose beans, fish, skinless poultry, and small portions of only grass-fed beef for protein.
5. Avoid eating damaging trans-fats by nixing foods containing hydrogenated oils or foods that come in crinkly packages!
6. Mix it up, and become a food explorer with different cuisines and new recipes.
7. Be accountable, by using a smartphone app or written diary to record everything that goes in your mouth.
8. Since you have made a tremendous amount of change, look forward to a meal or two every week, but no more, to indulge in eating a reasonable amount of sweets and starches, so you don’t feel deprived.
That’s a healthy plan for a healthy heart. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to contact me or write a post in our forums.