If you’ve ever stood in the bread aisle of a grocery story (okay, or placed an order at Subway) trying to choose between white, milk, whole wheat and multigrain bread, this article is for you. Because when it comes to diet choices, we often make decisions based on what we perceive is the healthier option, irrespective of whether or not it is really good for us. But just like choosing between a rented flat or a ladies’ PG in Kundalahalli, there is no one size fits all solution. Because different food items obviously have a lot of nutritional differences, especially when it comes to fat ratios, vitamin content, mineral content, and the amount of fibre present. And it’s not just the food either, each person has their own individual nutritional needs to fulfil. So, while finding that so-called perfect diet that works for everyone might be a little bit tricky, finding one that works for you is something that can be figured out.
The process does require some trial and error. Thankfully we’ve done some research on the subject to give you a place to start. With our five easy to follow tips, you can stay on track with your diets and have healthy eating habits for a lifetime.
Listen to your body
Forget what everyone else says. No one knows your body better than you. You know what foods you find difficult to digest, what wakes you up in the morning, and what’s sure to make you sleep after lunch. If you’ve already eaten dinner but you still find your stomach growling, go ahead and make another snack. Similarly if you’re not actually hungry at lunchtime, there’s no need to force yourself to eat. Be the best judge when it comes to your diet. Just because the latest fads suggest a whole bunch of superfoods for you to try doesn’t mean they’re going to be super for you. So, stick to your tried and tested recipes and staples and listen to your body’s needs. You won’t go wrong.
While listening to your body is a good place to start, it soon reveals to us that we don’t actually eat only when we’re hungry. And knowing that gives you a chance to identify patterns that you could be falling into that are actually not good for health. Paying attention to your snack habits can help you identify what you’re using food to cope with. Do you find yourself reaching for something to munch on whenever you’re watching TV? Do you order out a lot during exam season? Do you spend most of your time on weekends eating even when you’re not hungry? Do you reach for the ice cream tub after a bad day? All or any of these behaviours could point to the fact that you’re using food as a way to deal with boredom or stress. If that’s the case, identifying these patterns could help you unlearn the behaviours associated with them. So, you could train yourself to perform healthy alternatives instead of snacking when you’re bored or anxious.
Popular diets are not sacrosanct
This is something that most of us are guilty of falling prey to, at some point in our lives. Food trends, food fads and diets are always cropping up. And they can be quite convincing, especially when you see the results that they can cause. But that doesn’t mean that all diets are good for everyone. So if you’re planning to try a keto diet, go vegan or gluten-free, or even go on a juice cleanse, consider the pros and the cons. Because while these fads diets may help you lose weight in the short term, they could also have long term effects on your health. For example, if you’re choosing to go gluten-free even if you don’t have celiac disease, you could be running the risk of developing nutritional deficiencies. If you’re choosing one of these diets for their weight loss benefits, you have to work extra hard to make sure you supplement their nutritional value so that your overall health isn’t compromised. It may be a lot easier to eat your favourite food and develop a stable exercise routine instead.
Avoid peer pressure
We’ve all been there. You’re at a restaurant with your friends where everyone is ordering pizza, burgers and fries, so even if you’re actually in the mood for something light you order a burger too. After all, no one wants to hear those “Oh, you’re dieting, aren’t you?” comments. But this kind of peer pressure will only lead to you feeling uncomfortable and maybe even avoid going out with your friends in future. It’s better to be honest with yourself and others about what you like to eat so that you’re able to enjoy your meal and your company without feeling upset or overwhelmed.
Skip the guilt
Your room in your ladies’ PG in Yeshwanthpur may be enough for your belongings, but it doesn’t have the space to hold all your food guilt too. Yes, we’re talking about the guilt that comes when you eat something you think is “bad” for you or will make you put on weight. Think about that delicious Nutella sundae or that thick slice of chocolate cake. What did you feel when you saw it? Did you feel guilty just looking at it? Were you constantly thinking about how fat eating it would make you? If that’s the case, food guilt is definitely something you’re struggling with. And you can do yourself a favour by trying to stop that mindset. There’s nothing inherently good or bad with different foods. You’re allowed to eat things that are delicious if you enjoy them. Don’t let the guilt get in the way of your joy. You can always exercise later.
And there you have it. Our simple tips that will help you eat right when in Bangalore. Remember to practice moderation and you’ll be fine. Ultimately you know yourself and your body best. So don’t let anyone else make your choices for you.