How to Stay Motivated to Eat Healthy

Chances are you want to eat healthy, as you know of all the benefits it has for your body. But maybe you just can’t work up the motivation or the discipline. This is quite understandable; after all, an ice cream cone often tastes better than a banana.

Fortunately, adopting a healthy diet does not require sacrificing good food. Cravings for junk food can be cut, meaning you won’t be tempted to eat it excessively. The more junk food you cut from your diet, the healthier you’ll be. So with this end-goal in mind, here are 5 tips to get motivated:

  1. Make it enjoyable

You don’t have to eat steamed broccoli or Brussels sprouts every day in order to be healthy. You can search online for healthy recipes, or create your own recipe to give your food some taste and flare. Before doing so, you just need to ensure that ingredient you’re adding is a healthy one.

It’s also best to be open-minded, always willing to try a new ingredient or food. Remember what Dr. Suess taught us all as kids with Green Eggs and Ham: you don’t know that you dislike a food if you haven’t tried it, so don’t assume.

Once you find a recipe or food that you like, you’ll be inclined to eat it repeatedly without having to force yourself. Continue experimenting with snacks and meals until you have a collection of healthy ones, allowing for variety.

  1. Educate yourself

When it comes to the goal here, the worst thing you can do is to keep eating something unhealthy because you mistakenly believe it’s healthy. You will need to start reading the nutrition facts. Once you do, you may well be surprised at how much sodium or sugar your favorite food contains. Learn more about your food by searching online. Always do your own research. Avoid the trap of blindly trusting media sources (diet commercials, magazine headlines, YouTube vlogs, etc.), all of which are by definition biased, and will only tell you the side of the story they want you to hear.

  1. Find a buddy who will take the journey with you

Undertaking a new endeavor like this is often easier with a buddy to do it with you. If you’re not the best cook, you and your friend (or, even better, significant other) can join a cooking class together. If you have a friend who’s equally motivated to eat healthy, you will both me more inclined to stick to it. Make sure to challenge and encourage each other, each holding the other accountable.

In addition, you can share new healthy recipes or foods with your friend…or even have a healthy cooking contest together. With a strong support network, you’ll be less tempted to revert to your old diet.

  1. Plan accordingly

 The best way to stick to a healthy schedule is to plan your meals ahead of time, as you would with any regular activity. If you have a busy schedule and can’t cook every night, you may prefer meal prepping: taking two or three hours, say one night a week, and prepare all your food for the upcoming days. This way, you’ll have the convenience of sticking a meal in the microwave for the rest of the week…only, unlike regular microwave dinners, they’ll be healthy.

If you like the structure, you can also use the calendar technique, stereotypically associated with homemaker moms. Every Sunday, for example, write down what you’ll be having for each meal throughout the upcoming week. Make sure you have the necessary groceries for all of them. This will force you to hold yourself accountable, as your meal choices will be determined ahead of time.

  1. Get rid of all your junk food at home

By replacing your cabinet and fridge with only healthy food, you will be more motivated to eat it. Stocking up on vegetables, fruits, lean meats, whole grain products, healthy snacks, and healthy seasonings will be very helpful for you to stay on track. If you are the type of person that eats every hour, then packing fruits, nuts, or some homemade trail mix will help ease your hunger and stay healthy.

With some education on food and a little personal planning, you can make healthy eating a lifelong habit. After all, it’s not that difficult…and it doesn’t have to be unpleasant. All you need is an effective set of tools to get started, and hopefully this helped you out a bit.