Healthy Eating Habits

21st October is Apple Day in the United Kingdom. Apple day is an opportunity to remind us of the  benefits of eating healthily. With that in mind here are some tips to help you eat a healthier diet and make healthier choices.

  • Eat lots of fruit and vegetables

Data from the Canadian Community Health Survey indicates that fruit and vegetable intake is higher in people who practice other health promoting behaviours. On the other hand, people who are physically inactive, obese or smoke and are therefore at extra risk of numerous major chronic diseases tend to eat fruit and vegetables less frequently.[1]

It is recommended to eat 5 portions of fruit and vegetables every day. Fruit andvegetables can be fresh, frozen, canned, dried or juiced.[2] Some easy ways to accommodate more portions could include: chopping a banana over your breakfast cereal, or swapping your usual snack for a piece of fresh fruit.

  • Don’t skip breakfast

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Breakfast has a significant impact on how your body works throughout the day. One study published in the British Journal of Nutrition in 2012 suggested that a low-glycemic breakfast enhances memory, mood, focus and attention.[3]

Low-fat yoghurt, vegetable omelette and wholemeal breakfast burrito are just some examples of low-glycemic breakfasts.

  • Drink water

Drinking water throughout the day can be very important for your health. Drinking water can benefit weight loss and weight maintenance. Moreover, drinking water can even slightly increase the number of calories you burn daily.[4]

It is important to drink water instead of other beverages as it can help to reduce your sugar intake.[5] Drinking 8 glasses of water a day is easy to remember and a good goal.[6]

  • Eat slower

One study from 2008 examined whether eating until full, eating quickly or combinations of these eating behaviours are associated with being overweight. They concluded that eating until full and eating quickly are associated with being overweight.[7]

Faster eaters are more likely to be obese than slow eaters.[8][9] Eating more slowly and chewing more often may enhance your efforts to eat less and can reduce your chances of becoming overweight.

  • Keep a food journal

Write in your journal what, when, how and why you eat, as well as how you feel during and after the meal. After a couple of weeks, examine your journal and note your triggers for eating, the bad habits you are not controlling well and if there are any foods that make you feel unwell. Your food journal should be honest and truthful. If you have concerns or questions you can share your food journal with your doctor so he or she can help you plan changes to your eating habits.[10]

To eat healthier food, you may need to change some of your daily habits. You don’t have to change your habits all at the same time. You can start by setting small goals first and change your habits gradually. Over time, small changes can make a big difference in your health.


If you would like further guidance or support on how to improve employee’s health and wellbeing or require advice on other people management matters please contact Clover HR on 0121 516 0299 or email us at info@cloverhr.co.uk


©️ Copyright Clover HR

References:

Pérez, C. E. (2002). Fruit and vegetable consumption. Health Rep13(3), 23-31

NHS (2018) 5 A Day: what counts? [online] available from <https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/eat-well/5-a-day-what-counts/> [13 October 2019]

Cooper, S. B., Bandelow, S., Nute, M. L., Morris, J. G., & Nevill, M. E. (2012). Breakfast glycaemic index and cognitive function in adolescent school children. British Journal of Nutrition107(12), 1823-1832

Gunnars, K. (2018) ‘How Much Water Should You Drink Per Day?’ [online] available from <https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/how-much-water-should-you-drink-per-day> [13 October 2019]

Popkin, B. M., D’Anci, K. E., & Rosenberg, I. H. (2010). Water, hydration, and health. Nutrition reviews68(8), 439-458

Mayo Clinic (2017) ‘Water: How much should you drink every day?’ [online] available from <https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/water/art-20044256> [13 October 2019]

Maruyama, K., Sato, S., Ohira, T., Maeda, K., Noda, H., Kubota, Y., … & Imano, H. (2008). The joint impact on being overweight of self reported behaviours of eating quickly and eating until full: cross sectional survey. Bmj337, a2002

Leong, S. L., Madden, C., Gray, A., Waters, D., & Horwath, C. (2011). Faster self-reported speed of eating is related to higher body mass index in a nationwide survey of middle-aged women. Journal of the American Dietetic Association111(8), 1192-1197

Bjarnadottir, A. (2017) 25 Simple Tips to Make Your Diet Healthier  [online] available from <https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/healthy-eating-tips> [14 October 2019]

Familydoctor. Org (2019) Nutrition: Keeping a Food Diar <https://familydoctor.org/nutrition-keeping-a-food-diary/> [14 October 2019]


[1] Pérez, C. E. (2002). Fruit and vegetable consumption. Health Rep13(3), 23-31

[2] NHS (2018) 5 A Day: what counts? [online] available from <https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/eat-well/5-a-day-what-counts/> [13 October 2019]

[3] Cooper, S. B., Bandelow, S., Nute, M. L., Morris, J. G., & Nevill, M. E. (2012). Breakfast glycaemic index and cognitive function in adolescent school children. British Journal of Nutrition107(12), 1823-1832

[4] Gunnars, K. (2018) ‘How Much Water Should You Drink Per Day?’ [online] available from <https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/how-much-water-should-you-drink-per-day> [13 October 2019]

[5] Popkin, B. M., D’Anci, K. E., & Rosenberg, I. H. (2010). Water, hydration, and health. Nutrition reviews68(8), 439-458

[6] Mayo Clinic (2017) ‘Water: How much should you drink every day?’ [online] available from <https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/water/art-20044256> [13 October 2019]

[7] Maruyama, K., Sato, S., Ohira, T., Maeda, K., Noda, H., Kubota, Y., … & Imano, H. (2008). The joint impact on being overweight of self reported behaviours of eating quickly and eating until full: cross sectional survey. Bmj337, a2002

[8] Leong, S. L., Madden, C., Gray, A., Waters, D., & Horwath, C. (2011). Faster self-reported speed of eating is related to higher body mass index in a nationwide survey of middle-aged women. Journal of the American Dietetic Association111(8), 1192-1197

[9] Bjarnadottir, A. (2017) 25 Simple Tips to Make Your Diet Healthier  [online] available from <https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/healthy-eating-tips> [14 October 2019]

[10] Familydoctor. Org (2019) Nutrition: Keeping a Food Diar <https://familydoctor.org/nutrition-keeping-a-food-diary/> [14 October 2019]


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