One of the Best Ways to Make Healthy Diets Stick

The year is still young. If you haven’t gotten off to a great start, there is still plenty of time to make a New Year’s resolution. We always like to say that you can have New Week’s resolutions as well because there is never a wrong time to pick up new, healthy habits! The problem is that sticking to them is hard.

We’re always searching for ways to stick to new habits, and today we want to focus on a tip we really like and have found really works for our team. We enjoy sharing practical, common-sense advice. When it is backed by science and not just anecdotes from our kitchens, that’s even better! Our big tip is actually small: keep it simple. When we want to make healthy choices, we often turn to food magazines, cookbooks and other sources for inspiration. We might pick things that sound amazing and look gorgeous in photos. But, those recipes tend to be a lot of work. And, all that work can actually spell disaster!

If you are keeping busy scouring Pinterest for recipes, you may find a lot of delicious stuff.  You also may be setting yourself up for several hours of shopping, prep work and cooking, every day,” said Dr. Candice Seti of The Weight Loss Therapist.

You might stick with that diet for a little while. But, if you aren’t a huge fan of cooking or have a busy life, that will fall by the wayside pretty quickly. It has to be as easy and enjoyable as your old eating habits for a healthy eating plan to work. If you are doing a ton of work, it doesn’t matter how tasty the meals are: you’re going to give up.

Look for recipes marked as “beginner,” even if you aren’t a beginner cook. When you are changing your cooking style, you go back to being a novice. And, if you aren’t as interested in the recipe because it’s not as exciting as something less healthy, the ease of cooking it can make it more appealing! The easier it is, the more likely it is to become a staple in your diet!

If you usually eat a lot of processed foods and are trying to eat a diet with more fresh and homemade meals, there’s no way to get around the fact that there will be more work. Going from using the microwave to needing to cook from scratch is always going to take more effort. But, you can look for the most straightforward recipes with the fewest ingredients — five-ingredient meals. And, don’t start off trying to cook lunch and dinner seven days a week. Instead, ease into it. You can start cooking a couple of healthy meals every week, getting used to the time it takes. Then you can slowly add meals as you go until you have the diet you want.

Just like a new resolution can start any time, you set health goalposts. You aren’t in a race against other people. You can get the diet you want at your own speed. Trying to change everything overnight can result in burnout. If you’re going to make the fancy meals from Pinterest, start with some delicious and healthy one-pot meals and work toward them! In the end, you’ll have the diet you want, and it will be sustainable!

Banner image: Alyson McPhee via Unsplash
February 03, 2021
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