Healthy eating looks different for everybody, but when we look at the general population, we know only 4% of Australian’s eat enough vegetables everyday, and for the average Australian one third of their energy intake comes from “discretionary foods” AKA highly processed, energy nutrient poor foods. So for the majority of us there is definitely room for improvement!
There are so many ways to improve your eating habits, sometimes it can be overwhelming when it comes to nutrition – with so many sources of nutrition advice: good and not so good (perhaps well-intended), so taking a step back and breaking it down to simple steps like working out what to change and why is a good place to start.
Step 1: Think about your overall health goal
Step 2: Identify key areas to improve that align with your health goal:
For example, asking yourself
* am i eating enough vegetables?
* do i have enough variety with my food or am I bored with my meals?
* are my meal times consistent?
* am I always hungry?
* am I always looking for snacks?
Step 3: Create a list of strategies that can help shift your current eating pattern and move it towards your health goal.
I want to increase my vegetable intake to at least 5 serves a day by:
Planning: Spend time to shop for fresh (or frozen) vegetables to ensure I have enough to eat or Ordering vegetable box from a delivery service each week as a back up to my shopping list
Preparing: Pre-chop vegetables
Implementing: Make sure 1/2 my plate has vegetables each meal
Step 4: Review your progress
Track your progress objectively – what worked, what didn’t work
These strategies may take a few attempts to get you to shift habits, and the reviewing part is really helpful to find out (without judgement) if your changes are working. If it’s not working back a step to change your strategies and with practice and support you can achieve your goals!
Speaking with a dietitian can help you review your eating, help you with deciding what to change for your needs, and provide you with the skills and knowledge to help you achieve your health goals. Book an appointment with Pennie today.