Food gives our bodies the energy we need to function. For many people, changing eating habits is very hard. You probably have had certain eating habits for so long that you don’t even realize they are unhealthy. Or, your habits have become part of your daily life, so you don’t think much about them. Here are some tips to help make your relationship with food a positive one:
Keep a Food Journal
A food journal is a great tool to help you learn about your eating habits. Start with keeping a food journal for 7 days.
- Write down what you eat, how much, and what times of day you are eating.
- Include notes about what else you were doing and how you were feeling, such as being hungry, stressed, tired, or bored. For example, maybe you were at work and were bored. So you got a snack from a vending machine down the hall from your desk.
- At the end of the week, review your journal and look at your eating patterns.
Decide which habits you want to change. Remember, small steps toward change lead to more success in making long-term changes. Think about what triggers or prompts may be causing some of your eating habits.
Taking on new, healthier eating habits may mean that you:
- Schedule times to eat your meals and snacks.
- Eat fruit for dessert instead of cookies (or skip dessert all together).
- Plan and prepare healthy meals and snacks to increase your chance of success.
- Keep healthy snacks at work. Pack healthy lunches that you make at home.
Replace your old habits with new, healthy ones
Find healthy choices for snacks and plan ahead. Eat slowly. Eat only when you are hungry. Plan your meals. Get rid of unhealthy foods.
An old saying goes: “Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dinner like a pauper.”
It may take a while before you can turn your unhealthy habits into new, healthy ones. Remember, it took you a while to form your old habits. And it may take just as long to change them. One slip does not mean you are a failure. Keep trying! Do not give up!
Dana Perri began her fitness journey at 5 years old as a swimmer and gymnast. Now she’s a dancer, Cirque de Soleil artist, aerialist, choreographer, personal trainer, group fitness instructor, life coach, nutritional consultant, and business owner.