Once you’ve got your pantry stocked with healthy food, you can start building a balanced plate. Following a balanced diet plan is the key to living a healthier life. Aside from improving your nutrition intake, a balanced plate can positively affect your stress levels and sleep quality.
Here’s a simple guide to balancing the food you eat daily without resorting to measuring cups or scales. Make sure you also adjust the plate size based on your body size and daily activity.
Fill Half the Plate with Vegetables
What we need the most in our diet are vegetables. These are where our body gets its required vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients. When planning your meal for the week and portioning veggies, try to get a wide variety of colorful, non-starchy vegetables.
A Quarter Full of Proteins
A quarter or 1/4 of your plate is for protein-rich foods. This means meat, poultry, seafood, and eggs. For vegetarian or vegan options, beans and soy-based foods like tofu or tempeh will ensure you get your required daily protein.
A Small Amount of Starch
Reserve 1/8 of your plate for starches or carbohydrates. This is where the whole grains, beans, and lentils you bought come in. Starchy foods also include vegetables like potatoes, sweet potatoes, and corn.
And a Portion of Healthy Fats
Another 1/8 of your plate is for healthy or unsaturated fats. This doesn’t mean simply pouring oil or fats into your meal. You can get your necessary healthy fats and oils by incorporating them into the dishes. Instead of using canola oil, you can use olive or avocado oil for frying and cooking.
Fruits, Beverages, and More
Make sure to also include fruits in your daily meals. Although not on your main plate, fresh or frozen fruits can be eaten as a dessert. Moreover, make sure you drink enough water each day. It’s also best to avoid sugary and high-calorie drinks as much as possible.
Start the Year Right with a Healthy Diet
When building a better, healthier diet plan, go slowly and try to enjoy each new change to your diet. Approach the endeavor with positivity! For this, it’s important to remove the words “cheat day” or “cheat meals” from your vocabulary.
With the right ingredients and better meal planning, you can easily create a filling and yummy meal that won’t leave you feeling cheated out of delicious, regular meals.
The start of a new year is the perfect time to kick off a new and healthier lifestyle. With the pandemic still ongoing, switching to a healthy lifestyle can not only strengthen our immune system but also provide us with a little more peace of mind.