Are your eating habits coming in way of a healthy lifestyle?
Take a look at these five common mistakes people make with their food:
#1 Eating too fast
Eating in a hurry helps quench that hunger pang but it can be misleading in terms of the right limit at which one feels satiated, allowing a chance for overeating.
#2 Eating mindlessly
Distracted eating has become all too common these days. Who doesn’t catch up with texts or social networks during lunch hour, or continue working at the desk while they munch, or stare at the TV during dinner while taking in mouthfuls of food? It is quite likely that a person takes in excessive calories when distracted. Also, mindless eating tends to increase the intake of junk foods like fries, chips, instant noodles, etc. It is better to take out time for a meal, enjoy it mindfully, and stop once the stomach begins to feel full.
#3 Eating for reasons other than hunger
Snacking is the term for those munchies consumed between meal hours, and some people find themselves addicted to non-stop snacking. This results when one is not in sync with the body’s hunger and satiety signals, leading to chronic eating and piling on of weight. This increases the risk of diseases like heart disorders, diabetes, etc.
#4 Skipping breakfast
Breakfast is a crucial day starter that sustains the day’s activities to follow. Including proteins, fibre, and vitamins and minerals in form of cereal makes a healthy meal at the start of the day. Breakfast also prevents untimely hunger pangs during later hours – a great way for those looking to lose weight and keep it off!
#5 Eating out of the bag
To start with, packaged foods are not the healthiest options available. Worse than that is eating them straight out of their wrapping! This tosses the portions out of control since there is no measure of serving size. All that one sees is a bag full of chips, cookies or namkeen. Being aware of how much serving one consumes helps to control the number of calories; further, keeping a food journal allows a person to track the exact quantities of foods consumed during the day.
What are the dangers of unhealthy eating habits?
Poor eating habits and poor choices in food affect health on multiple levels. These include:
- Lowering of energy levels – Consuming junk food on a regular basis leads to chronic fatigue because the body does not get the nutrition it requires from these food items. With inadequate carbohydrates and proteins, junk food only causes blood sugar level to drop soon after, leading to more craving and fatigue.
- Obesity – Poor eating practices easily leads to overeating that causes fat accumulation. More weight a person gains, higher are his/her chances of acquiring chronic illnesses.
- Diabetes – Eating too much sugar, overeating, eating at irregular times puts stress on the body’s metabolism and its ability to control blood sugar. This progresses to diabetes.
- Heart and liver disease – High fat and sodium intake in most junk foods can raise blood pressure and cholesterol levels, leading to heart disease. Fatty foods cause fatty liver deposits that can result in liver dysfunction over time.
Habits do not develop overnight, nor will they disappear quickly. However, small steps towards healthy eating will make a difference in the long run. The key is to start today and carry through with the positive changes daily!
“Improving Your Eating Habits,” CDC.gov, http://www.cdc.gov/healthyweight/losing_weight/eating_habits.html
“Junk-Food Facts,” WebMD.com, Elaine Magee, http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/junk-food-facts
“The immediate effect fast food has on children,” TheNational.ae, Rachel Lewis, May 13, 2013, http://www.thenational.ae/lifestyle/family/the-immediate-effect-fast-food-has-on-children
“What Happens to Your Brain When You Eat Junk Food (And Why We Crave It)” HuffingtonPost.com, James Clear, November 15, 2013, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/james-clear/why-we-crave-junk-food_b_4261415.html
Image courtesy of [Mister GC] at FreeDigitalPhotos.net