Getting, and staying in shape can be challenging. Time spent in the gym is important, of course. However, what happens outside of that time is also crucial to your overall success. Here are five key eating habits that will complement your hard work in the gym and keep you on track.
1. Drink water
Make it your business to drink more water throughout the day. Staying hydrated not only increases satiety and boosts your metabolic rate (which aids weight loss) but it also improves physical and mental performance in our daily lives. Try to drink at least 8 glasses of water a day and see the results. You can add a wedge of lime or lemon to add a dash of flavour if you want.
2. Eat whole food products rather than processed products
White bread and white paste tend to be easier to eat and digest, but we tend to eat more of them as they are not as filling. However, whole food products, like brown bread, brown rice and pasta are better as they are nutrient rich. They take longer to eat and digest, and therefore we feel fuller from them.
3. Eat breakfast
Having a nutritious breakfast not only helps start your day on a positive note, it also increases satiety which makes it less likely that you will snack throughout the day. Some great options for breakfast are porridge with berries, eggs with toast or a protein smoothie. The great thing about breakfast is that you can vary it up every day which is a good mood booster first thing in the morning.
4. Eat mindfully and slowly
Ideally, it should take around 15-20 minutes to finish a meal. This is the time it takes for your brain to send out the signals that you are full. So eat slowly and enjoy your meals, keeping them as varied and interesting as possible. Eating slowly helps to aid digestion and reduce stress making you feel calmer and more in control.
5. Eat plenty of fruit and vegetables
The great thing about fruit and vegetables is that they are low in calories yet nutrient dense, so they can be eaten in high quantities. They are rich in dietary fibre, vitamins and minerals, while being low in fat, which is ideal for maintaining or losing weight. You should be aiming for five servings of fruit and vegetables a day as a rule of thumb.