Let’s face it, unless you’re an organic plant-based locavore, most of us could probably afford to eat a little better. We speak to registered dietitian Sharon Chan for some tips on how to make positive diet changes.
What’s a good, attainable dietary change that we can all make today?
There are two important dietary changes that we should all try to sustain: increase our intake of fruits and vegetables, and limit sugar in our drinks. I suggest that each meal should have more fruits and vegetables than carbohydrates and protein. When it comes to ordering drinks, such as milk tea or coffee, definitely go for less or no sugar.
Why do diet-based resolutions fail?
A common reason our diet-based resolutions fail is the lack of a support system. Surround yourself with friends and family who encourage and motivate you. Our expectations are often too high; we want to go from a fast food diet to an organic, plant based diet immediately, or lose 20 pounds in two months. Instead, we should make small, measurable goals.
Any practical tips for staying motivated?
Set a schedule for yourself that you know you’ll keep, such as having regular meals with snacks throughout the day, and not eating late at night. Also, set reminders for yourself, like when to drink water throughout the day. Having small regular goals also really helps. Try vegetarian Mondays, or having a home-cooked dinner every Wednesday night.
What are some things to remember when we are trying to make a dietary change?
Do NOT go cold turkey. A sudden change in diet and lifestyle is not only hard for your body to adjust to, but your mind is often also in denial. Start by making one change and once you feel comfortable, add a new one and go on from there.
What are some foods that everyone should quit right now?
Definitely deep fried foods and soda. And prepackaged snacks that are not made with whole foods.