Let’s face it. There’s a reason why so many of us have trouble eating nutritiously every day. Sometimes it’s just quicker and easier to eat unhealthy food. If you’re having trouble getting started on a healthy eating plan, these tips can help:
Boost a low appetite
Check with your doctor to see if your loss of appetite could be due to medication and whether the medication or dosage can be changed. Try natural flavor enhancers such as olive oil, butter, vinegar, garlic, onions, ginger, and spices to boost your appetite.
Cope with difficulty chewing
- Make chewing easier by drinking smoothies made with fresh fruit, yogurt, and protein powder.
- Eat steamed veggies and soft food such as couscous, rice, and yogurt.
- Consult your dentist to make sure your dentures are properly fitted.
Deal with a dry mouth
- Drink 8–10 glasses of water each day.
- Take a drink of water after each bite of food.
- Add sauces and salsas to moisten your food.
- Avoid commercial mouthwash.
- Ask your doctor about artificial saliva products.
But what if you just don’t like healthy food?
None of us was born with a craving for French fries and donuts or an aversion to broccoli. This conditioning happens over time as we’re exposed to unhealthier food choices. However, it is possible to reprogram your brain’s food cravings over time so that you crave healthier foods instead.
Commit to keeping an open mind. Just because a food is healthy, it doesn’t mean it can’t be tasty as well.
Don’t change everything all at once. Add a side salad to your normal dinner, for example, or substitute unhealthy fries with baked sweet potato fries, or have a smaller portion of dessert and fill up with melon and pineapple slices.
Focus on how you feel after eating well. This will help foster new habits and tastes. The more healthy food you eat, the better you’ll feel afterward.
You can also switch to healthier versions of your favorite foods, like chocolate. Who doesn’t love chocolate? If you consume the right kind, this delicious treat can even provide you with an impressive number of health benefits. Instead of getting a cup of hot chocolate from some fast-food chain, drink Santé Choco Barley instead. It has that familiar warm, chocolatey indulgence you love but with tons of health benefits.
Or are stuck in a rut?
No matter how healthy your diet, eating the same foods over and over is bound to get boring. Rekindle inspiration by:
- Browsing produce at a farmers market.
- Reading a cooking magazine.
- Buying foods or spices you haven’t tried before.
- Chatting with friends about what they eat.
- Or you can’t shop or cook for yourself?
- Take advantage of home delivery.
- Many grocery stores have online delivery services.
Swap services. Ask a friend, neighborhood teen, or college student if they would be willing to shop for you in return for homework help, for example.
Share your home. Consider having a housemate/companion who would be willing to do the grocery shopping and cooking.
Aging also comes with changes in the way you eat and what your diet should comprise of. Follow the tips mentioned above to help you adapt to the said changes and minimize the challenge of dealing with them.