7 Steps To Healthy Eating Habits - RT24 Home Workout
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7 Steps To Healthy Eating Habits

What we put into our bodies is just as important as what we do with our bodies, so understanding what you’re eating is key to reaching your health and fitness goals.

 

Eat the right amount of calories for how active you are, so that you balance the energy you consume with the energy you use. If you eat or drink too much, you’ll put on weight. Some people employ a calorie deficit diet, which means they are burning more energy than they are consuming, leading to weight-loss. This can work for periods of time, but is not sustainable as a permanent diet. Eat a wide range of foods to ensure that you’re getting a balanced diet and that your body is receiving all the nutrients it needs. It is recommended that men have around 2,400 – 3,000 calories a day, while it is recommended for women to have between 1,800 – 2,400 calories a day (US Agri Dept Dietary Guidelines). Most adults are eating more calories than they need.

 

Base your meals on Starchy Carbohydrates

 

Starchy carbohydrates should be a third of the food you eat. This includes potatoes, bread, rice, pasta and cereals. Importantly, make sure they are wholegrain varieties (or eat potatoes with their skins on) which contain more fibre, give you that feeling of being full for longer.

A common misconception is that starchy foods are fattening, but gram for gram the carbohydrate they contain provides fewer than half the calories of fat.

Remember to keep an eye on the fats you add when you’re cooking these types of foods because that’s what will increase the calorie content, eg for example oil on fries, butter on bread and creamy sauces on pasta.

 

Eat More fish – including a portion of oily fish

 

Fish is a great source of protein and contains many other vitamins and minerals that contribute to a healthy body. It is recommended to try and eat at least two portions of fish a week, including one portion of oily fish. Oily fish contains omega-3 fats, which may help to prevent heart disease. 

Some examples of oily fish are: salmon, mackerel, trout, fresh tuna, sardines.

Examples of non-oily fish: haddock, plaice, cod, skate, hake

Try and eat fresh fish as much as possible as canned and smoked fish can be high in salt.

 

Cut down on Saturated Fat and Sugar

 

Saturated fat in our diet

We all need some fat in our diet, but it’s vitally important to pay attention to the amount and type of fat we’re eating. There are two main types of fat: saturated and unsaturated. Too much saturated fat can increase the amount of cholesterol in the blood, which increases your risk of developing heart disease.

On average, males should have no more than 30g saturated fat per day, and females 20g of saturated fat per day.

Saturated fat is found in many foods, such as hard cheese, sausages, butter, cakes

Choose foods that contain unsaturated fats instead, such as vegetable oils, oily fish and avocados. When cooking, use just a small amount of vegetable oil or reduced-fat spread instead of butter. When you’re having meat, choose lean cuts and cut off any visible fat. 

 

Sugar in our diet

Regularly consuming foods and drinks high in sugar increases your risk of obesity and tooth decay. Sugary foods and drinks, including alcoholic drinks, are often high in energy (measured in kilojoules or calories), and if eaten too often, can contribute to weight gain.

Try and avoid pure fruit juice as much as possible, they are high in sugar and can contribute to tooth decay!

Many packaged foods and drinks contain surprisingly high amounts of free sugars. Free sugars are any sugars added to foods or drinks, or found naturally in honey, syrups and unsweetened fruit juices.

Cut down on:

  • sugary fizzy drinks
  • alcoholic drinks
  • sugary breakfast cereals
  • cakes
  • biscuits
  • Fruit juices

 

Make sure to check the labels on your food to see how much sugar it contains. More than 22.5g of total sugars per 100g means that the food is high in sugar, while 5g of total sugars or less per 100g means that the food is low in sugar.

 

Eat Less Salt

 

An over consumption of salt can raise your blood pressure, which contributes to a greater likelihood of heart disease or stroke.

You could be eating to much salt, even without adding more to your food. The majority of the salt we eat is already in our food (about 3/4s) such as breakfast cereals, breads, sauces etc

Again, make sure to pay attention to the food labels to help you understand how much you’re consuming. If the food contains more than 1.5g of salt per 100g means the food is high in salt. Adults and children over 11 should eat no more than 6g of salt (about a teaspoonful) a day!.

 

Get Active

 

Combined with eating more healthily, physical activity will help you to maintain a healthy weight or contribute towards a weight loss target. Being physically active is known to help reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes. After exercising remember not to reward yourself with a treat that is high in calories. If you’re feeling hungry, choose foods or drinks that are lower in calories, but still filling. RT24, as a workout program, gives you an immediate burn of calories, however the burn continues for 24 hours afterwards – you are still using calories as your muscles recover.

 

Drink Plenty of Water/Fluids

 

We need to drink plenty of fluids to stop us getting dehydrated, the recommended amount is 3.7 liters for males and 2.7 liters for females (NAM).

Try to avoid sugary soft and fizzy drinks that are high in added sugars and calories, and are also bad for teeth. Unsweetened fruit juice and smoothies are high in free sugar. Your combined total of drinks from fruit juice, vegetable juice and smoothies should not be more than 150ml a day – which is a small glass.

 

Remember Breakfast

 

Skipping breakfast to try and lose weight? Research shows that people who regularly eat breakfast are less likely to be overweight. Breakfast has also been shown to have positive effects on our mental performance and increase concentration throughout the morning.

Eating a healthy breakfast is an important part of a healthy and balanced diet. Some great options to eat for breakfast are porridge or scrambled egg. You can find some healthy breakfast recipes in the recipe section of this site.

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