How to plan a healthy diet for 2023

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Introduction

Why to plan your diet?

People who plan their meals are more likely to be successful with weight loss. Planning your meals will help you limit your calories and stay on track and also help you avoid making unhealthy choices in the heat of the moment. So healthy people always plan a healthy diet is paramount for their health and fitness.

plan a healthy diet
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Eating local

What is your goal while planning a healthy diet?

It can be tempting to just jump into a new routine, but taking the time to write down your goals will help you decide what you want to achieve and eventually help you stay motivated. It also gives you something to refer back to when you’re struggling with your new changes.

You’re probably not going to stick with a diet that doesn’t have a goal.

Goal setting is an essential part of success and it can determine whether or not your diet sticks long-term. A few tips:

  • Look for a specific metric for your goal, like “lose 5 lbs” instead of “lose weight.” Having something concrete will keep things less abstract and more tangible. That said, try not to set too many goals at once because it’ll be too difficult and may lead you down the path of failure.
  • The more goals the better, but don’t overwhelm yourself by trying to accomplish everything at once! If anything, start off slow: there are no rules about how much weight has been lost on this particular journey yet so don’t pressure yourself too hard from day one!

Smart choices for a healthy diet

1. Focus on whole foods.

To learn more about how to eat well, it’s helpful to first understand what “whole food” is. In general, the term refers to food that has not been refined or processed in any way.

Whole food is safe for human consumption and can help you reach and maintain your ideal weight. It also has the ability to boost your immune system, strengthen your bones, and support your digestive system.

Whole grains are better choices than refined grains because they contain more fiber and other nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals (chemicals found in plants).

Whole food lowers cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of some types of cancer.

Some examples of whole foods include fresh fruits, vegetables, and dairy products such as cheese; lean meats like chicken or fish; and nuts, seeds, legumes (dry beans), avocados, eggs, spices, herbs, and other healthy foods that have been grown organically.

2. Limit added sugars.

If you’re like most adults, you consume more than twice the recommended amount of added sugars each day. One key way to cut calories and improve your diet is to reduce your intake of added sugars.

Added sugars are sugars used during food processing or preparation such as putting sugar in your coffee or adding sugar to your cereal. They also are found in many processed foods and beverages that you may not think of as sweet, such as bread, salad dressings, and tomato sauce.

The general recommendation for added sugar intake is no more than 10% of total daily calories from added sugar.

That’s about 200 calories per day from added sugar—or 50 grams—for someone on a 2,000-calorie diet.

However, the American Heart Association recommends limiting the amount of added sugars you consume to no more than half of your daily discretionary calorie budget—or about 100 calories per day for most women and 150 per day for most men.

3. Eat more protein.

  • Protein is an important building block of bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, and blood.
  • Protein can also be used as an energy source.
  • There are 20 different amino acids that combine to form a protein; 11 of them can be synthesized by the body while the other 9 (called essential amino acids) must come from food.
  • The term “complete protein” describes protein sources that contain all 9 essential amino acids (building blocks).

Meat, poultry, fish, and eggs are complete proteins because they contain all 9 essential amino acids.

Protein is an essential nutrient that helps build and repair body tissue, produce hormones, and fight infection. Good protein sources include lean meats, fish, poultry without skin, eggs, and tofu.

4. Plan to eat a variety of colors and flavors each day

Eating a variety of colors and flavors each day is key.

You should take care to eat a rainbow of colors in order to provide yourself with all the nutrients your body needs. The more colorful your plate the better!

In addition, you should regularly incorporate new flavors into your diet. Eating foods and spices from around the world will ensure you have an exciting and fun diet!

Finally, consider incorporating seasonal produce into your meals.

Eating local is a great way to support small businesses, farmers, and other members of your community.

Plus, it’s usually fresher than produce that has been shipped from far away places.

5. Make sure you’re getting all of the nutrients you need in your diet

Following a healthy diet does not mean cutting out all of your favorite foods and eating only salads.

It means eating a wide variety of foods from each of the five main food groups, in the amounts recommended by Canada’s Food Guide.

Eating a variety of healthy foods every day will help you get all the nutrients your body needs to feel good. Try including at least one serving from each food group at each meal whenever possible: vegetables; fruit; grain products; milk products; meat alternatives

6. Make a grocery list that helps to budget and prevent waste

Finally, the most crucial part of meal planning is the grocery list. You can plan all you want, but if you don’t have the right ingredients, you won’t get to eat any of them.

So make a grocery list!

Write down what you need to buy and stick with it.

It will help with budgeting and will also prevent food waste. If you go in without a list and stock up on different foods that aren’t going to go together well, then it will be much harder for yourself when making your meals later on. Remember: don’t over-buy, or else it will all go bad before you can even use it!

It may take some time to get used to keeping a shopping list organized and updated, but once you do, the habit will greatly reduce stress while shopping and save money by preventing overbuying.

7. Shop for healthy choices

Choose foods that are low in calories and filling. They’ll help you feel full without consuming too many calories.

Healthy, low-calorie food includes fruits, vegetables, whole-grain products, and fat-free or 1% dairy products.

Steer clear of foods that contain large amounts of saturated fats, trans fats, salt (sodium), or added sugars such as sweetened breakfast cereals, baked goods, and soft drinks. These foods often contain a lot of calories but not much nutrition — so they don’t keep you feeling full for long periods of time.

If you have diabetes or high blood pressure or need to restrict sodium (salt), be sure to check the labels for sodium content before purchasing them

  • Buy frozen, canned, or dried versions of fruits and vegetables when fresh varieties aren’t available or are out of season. Just make sure they’re labeled as being packed without added salt or sugar
  • Choose whole grains over refined grain products whenever possible — they contain more fiber and can help make you feel full longer

8. Set aside time to cook every day

Setting aside time to cook every day can be a difficult thing to do, but it is well worth the effort. It’s true that you may have to spend more time in the kitchen than if you were to go out and buy food, but pre-planning your meals and learning how long they take to make will help save time in the long run.

In an emergency, people often say that cooking from scratch takes too long. This doesn’t have to be true! If you plan ahead and know what you’ll eat on each day of the week, so you can precook meals for part of the coming week.

I hope you like the blog post!

By John Gurung

A former software developer who is now a blogging enthusiast. A true digital nomad.

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