We all know how important it is to eat healthy, yet when given the option of eating broccoli versus chocolate, most of us will pick chocolate. I am equally as guilty as everyone else, and it only makes us human. However, once I changed my diet around and started eating healthier, I started craving chocolate less and less. Once you begin a regular diet and exercise, it makes those moments of indulgence feel a lot less… guilty. It’s okay to indulge here and there, as long as your diet isn’t full of ice cream and Cheetos.
The nutrients we feed our bodies affect our physical health and mental health. Consuming the right foods will provide us with more energy throughout the day, making it much more bearable to get through. Maximizing energy will eliminate grogginess and increase productivity. I am not a nutritionist, and I know what works for me might not work for every person. I am not the fittest and healthiest person alive, but I do actively try to take care of my body. I wanted to share what I eat in a day, as I choose to eat healthier options that are still satisfy my tastebuds and don’t deprive me of my sweets. I hope this provides you with some inspiration.
Breakfast: Oatmeal with Nuts + Berries
This is a meal very high in fiber and the berries will provide vitamin C and potassium, making a solid meal to begin the day. The combination of oatmeal and nuts will normalize your bowel movements, help lower your cholesterol, and help your immune system.
Lunch: Salad with Chicken, Carrots, Dried Cranberries, Cucumber, and Balsamic Vinaigrette
I know a salad sounds boring, but salads actually provide a lot of flexibility. You can dress your salad up however you want. Other fun additions that can be added into a salad include fruits like pineapple or even strawberries, hard-boiled eggs, nuts, and beans. Have fun with it! Just do your best to pick a dressing that isn’t too fatty. Remember that salads consist of a lot of antioxidants, especially when adding in raw vegetables. This is great for your heart and can help combat infection.
Dinner: Chicken Breast Cooked in Olive Oil
Like salad, chicken sounds like a boring meal to many, but can be dressed up in many ways. I prefer cooking my chicken in a bit of olive oil, but other healthy additions could be lemon chicken, garlic chicken, or even something easier like putting a bit of quinoa on top of your chicken. There are many benefits to chicken breast, such as protein, heart health, and phosphorus. This will help your teeth and bones and can help fight arthritis. Another benefit many people may not know about is that chicken is high in tryptophan. This is an amino acid that will increase serotonin levels which will overall decrease stress, anxiety, and make you feel a little bit cheerier.
Snacks: Hard-boiled egg + cashews
I usually try to eat 1-2 small snacks per day, as this will help my cravings and satisfy me when I’m hungry. Eggs and cashews are two salty snacks, but with many health benefits. Eggs are high in protein and consist of healthy fats. Cashews are a great source of vitamins and minerals and contains Vitamin E, K, and B6 and minerals such as iron and selenium. This snack is great for building muscle, boosting your immune system, creating energy, and circulating oxygen.
Dessert: Mixed Berries + Honey
I like to finish my day off with something sweet. Mixed berries with honey is a great way to get my sweet fix while still eating something nutritious. Like stated before, berries are high in fiber, vitamin C, and potassium. Berries are packed with antioxidants that can have long-term benefits. Honey is also full of antioxidants and can help lower triglycerides. This sweet dessert can help improve your memory as you age and can help keep your heart healthy.
Even little changes in your diet can make a huge difference. Just know that for every unhealthy snack you crave, there is a healthier alternative. Remember that while you might be craving the sugary snack now, eating something healthier will make you feel better in the long run.