5 ways to maintain a healthy diet without getting bored

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2020 is just around the corner and for many of us that means setting the customary New Year’s resolution health goals (most likely the same goals we set last year, and the year before that, but never really carried through!)

Many of us find workouts and healthy eating tedious. It’s something we know we need to do to stay in shape but it isn’t something we necessarily enjoy doing. We associate clean eating with bland, boring foods that don’t excite us *Inserts sad looking broccoli into mouth and sheds a little tear*, and spending endless hours on a treadmill trying to burn off one pack of chips. 

The reality is that when healthy eating causes us constant discontent, it’s hard to stick to a healthy diet long-term. 

Despite all of that, we’re here to tell you that healthy eating doesn’t need to be boring. Here are five ways to make it fun, enjoyable and most importantly something you can maintain in the long run.

1. Get inspired

We often hear that people find it hard to keep things interesting when it comes to eating clean. It’s really easy to master only a few healthy recipes and continue to eat these meals over and over again. But inevitably, sooner or later, you’ll get bored of the same foods. Therefore, in order to sustain a healthy diet, variety is key to staying satisfied. 

There are so many fascinating ingredients you can include in your diet, half of which you may have never even heard of! Experimenting with these foods regularly and browsing new recipes will be really effective in maintaining a diet you love.

You can also start using different herbs and spices for seasoning to shake things up. This is a simple and incredibly tasty way of creating endless new flavors so you never get bored of the food your eating. 

Top tip: try to avoid processed marinades and sauces as a way to season your food as these have lots of added preservatives and artificial flavorings which are high in calories but don’t include the necessary nutrients you need to stay healthy. Stick to natural herbs and spices where you can.

Whilst many of us don’t always have the time to come up with new recipes, particularly during the week when work and life in general get in the way, allocating some time at the weekends to cook is a great way to explore something new. You can also use this time to prepare meals for the upcoming week to save time.
Get inspired by browsing new recipes on the Lifesum app. We’ve got hundreds of quick and simple recipes to help keep your meals varied and well-balanced.

2. Follow a meal plan

Following a meal plan, created by nutritional experts, is a sure way to get exposure to new meals and ingredients, with the reassurance that the plans have been created with nutrition in mind. This way, you know all the meals are well-balanced and include a winning combination of nutrients, vitamins and minerals needed to sustain a healthy lifestyle. You also get to enjoy a variety of delicious meals, so you’re always satisfied, never bored. 

Generally, one of the main challenges of healthy eating is that people don’t have the time or budget to eat well. By following a meal plan, such as those offered by Lifesum, you get access to pre-planned meals so you don’t have to think up new recipes every day. You also get digital shopping lists with all the ingredients needed to make the meals as part of the plan. This saves time and is really helpful in avoiding temptation at the grocery store. You simply just stick to the list!

3. Don’t deprive yourself of the foods you love

Did you know the single most important factor to maintaining a healthy diet is allowing yourself to eat the foods you love?

Completely depriving yourself from your favorite foods increases the risk of breaking good habits because it means you don’t ever feel satisfied, therefore, you’re more likely to binge. By eating foods you like in smaller quantities on a regular basis means you can sustain your healthy eating over a longer period of time. 

A good reference to base your diet on is the 80/20 rule. This rule focuses on eating healthy foods 80% of the time to get a good balance of all the nutrients you need for a diet that is considered healthy. That, then leaves 20% of ‘not so healthy’ foods you love to eat. That’s right, you can eat chocolate and donuts, just make sure it fits into the 20% allocation. 

Moderation and balance is key to maintaining a healthy lifestyle, not just now but for the rest of your life!

4. Involve your loved ones

At times, it can be difficult to maintain a healthy lifestyle yourself if your loved ones aren’t fully invested in making healthy changes too. 

Involving your family and getting them interested in health is an excellent way to sustain good habits together.

You can do this by cooking new recipes together, working out together, attending cooking classes together and sharing articles on nutrition with each other, to suggest just a few ways to make clean eating more fun.

Note, it doesn’t mean you have to do everything together or compete against each other. Everyone has their own preferences so it’s perfectly fine if members of your family eat different meals sometimes (as long as they’re healthy) or you do workouts separately, as an example.

Remember, if you’re working towards weight loss goals, not everyone will lose the same amount of weight at the same pace so don’t get disheartened if it takes you slightly longer than others.

Lastly, having respect for nutrition and ensuring your loved ones understand the benefits of maintaining a healthy lifestyle does wonders in making it a fun and enjoyable experience.

5. Track your calories with Lifesum and learn about nutrition

Tracking your calories daily through apps like Lifesum, not only allows you to keep check of your calorie deficit/surplus and work towards your goal, it means you also have visibility of food databases and access to the nutritional values of the food products your consuming. This is a great platform for learning about nutrition.

An important contributor in making healthy eating enjoyable is obtaining a general interest in food and health. Learning, and more importantly caring about nutritional values, calories and how different foods impact your body and mind allows you to become fully invested in your health journey, increasing the likelihood of you achieving your goals and making them last. 

So, there you have it — five ways to make healthy eating not boring. 

When you enjoy what you eat and make all encompassing health changes, you’re more likely to sustain good habits. Here’s a recap of how to achieve this.

Take-away messages:

  • Get inspired – experiment with new recipes and ingredients you’ve never cooked with before to keep things interesting
  • Follow a meal plan – meals plans offer great exposure to new foods and also make healthy eating quick and easy
  • Don’t cut out the ‘not so healthy’ foods you love – being too strict on yourself will only end badly. Always follow the 80/20 rule
  • Get your loved ones involved – make it a family journey to better health
  • Track your calories with Lifesum and learn about nutrition – having a general interest in food and health means you’re more likely to become fully invested in sustaining good habits and enjoying the experience.

Lifesum have been helping over 40 million users on their journey to better health. Download the app and make 2020 your healthiest year yet.

With Lifesum, tracking your healthy habits (and the not so healthy ones) becomes a breeze. We’ll help you pick the right food, and eat the right portion sizes, to reach your personal health goals.

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