Then, Follow These Simple Strategies
- Eat a variety of foods. Make sure your diet includes lean protein; complex carbohydrates such as whole grains, fruits, and vegetables; and "good" fats like omega-3 fats from fish and monounsaturated fats from avocados, nuts, and olives or olive oil. When you go on a fad diet and exclude necessary nutrients, you're putting yourself at risk for becoming ill. Getting too little of any nutrient may not cause an immediate problem. But if it's lacking for a long time, you may find you have health problems
- Say no to bad fats. Minimize how much saturated fat you get from animal sources, and eliminate trans fats from the fried foods, snacks, and fast-food products you eat.
- Get five a day. Eat at least five servings of fruits and vegetables each day. Choose different colors of fruits and vegetables to ensure optimal nutrition.
- Exercise at least 150 minutes each week. This can be divided into smaller blocks of time. For example, you could do a brisk walk for 10 minutes three times a day for 5 days to reach 150 minutes.
- Clean out the kitchen! Toss out high-calorie, high-fat, sugary foods that will tempt you to overeat -- chips, cookies, crackers, ice cream, candy bars, and the like. Then, fill your fridge and cupboards with lean protein, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, good fats, and fat-free or low-fat dairy products.
- Eat smaller meals more frequently. Aim for five to six mini-meals per day. Space your meals every 3 to 4 hours. Try taking low fat cheese and whole-grain crackers to school or work for a snack, or eat a tablespoon of peanut butter with one slice of whole-grain bread. Find foods that are healthy and that keep you full.
- Fill up on the good stuff. Pile on the salad and super servings of green beans, broccoli, cabbage, kale, or other low-calorie vegetables instead of high-fat foods, breads, pasta, and desserts. If you’re still hungry after a meal and you want seconds, go for veggies.
- Snack on berries. Dark berries (blueberries, blackberries, cherries, and raspberries) are rich in healthy antioxidants. They’re also low in calories and fat and high in fiber.
- Avoid "empty calories." Steer clear of sugar-containing sodas and fruit drinks.