Making changes towards healthier food choices

What makes unhealthy food so tasty — and unhealthy — is excessive salt, sugar or fat. For example, when you eat a potato chip or tempting fries, it's not the potato that delights your taste buds, it's the oil and salt. Here's what you can do about these harmful food dependencies.

Here's the good news: over time, you can train yourself to be less attached to these flavours. When you do, you'll discover that "good for you" foods can taste far more wonderful than the salt or sugar in most junk foods.

Making the easiest, smallest changes is a good way to start.

Making changes towards healthier food choices

Make small changes

Do you have coffee and a Danish pastry to start the day? Make one change, such as adding a glass of antioxidant-rich orange juice or replacing the Danish pastry with a fruity, bran muffin. Similarly, make one healthy swap at lunch — substitute mustard for the rich mayonnaise on your sandwich or add an apple to the meal, for example. Then do the same at dinner.

Your goal is to make small, acceptable adjustments to your diet and stick with them. Then, when these changes become second nature, add a few more.

Along the way, reduce the salt, butter and sugary drinks you consume. In time, your taste buds will become less reliant on the tastes of salt, sugar and fat and more satisfied with fresher, healthier foods.

Cook with healthier ingredients

Be sure to cook with the whole family in mind. Parents often give in to family demands but when it comes to health, that's a big mistake. You must look after yourself but you should also look after the health of your loved ones. Remember that the seeds of heart disease are sown in childhood.

So don't let family pressures defeat you. Introduce your healthy favourites little by little and gradually reduce the amount of salt or sugar you add. Eat small main course portions yourself and have a salad on the side if no one else wants vegetables.

Another strategy: swap ingredients. Replace some or all of the butter in recipes with canola or olive oil; use low-fat cheese (and less of it); sneak more vegetables into casseroles, soups and sauces; and cook lower-fat cuts of meat.

Also, from time to time, offer delicious strawberries and peaches for dessert or make a fresh fruit salad, topped with yogurt rather than cream.

Keep these strategies in mind to help you and your family start to eat more healthily without even realizing it.

The material on this website is provided for entertainment, informational and educational purposes only and should never act as a substitute to the advice of an applicable professional. Use of this website is subject to our terms of use and privacy policy.
Close menu