How to Easily Achieve Better Nutrition in Your Diet

better nutrition

When it comes to nutrition, there is an overwhelming amount of information available, and much of it is either conflicting or confusing to interpret. We all want to be doing what’s best for ourselves and our family when it comes to food and nutrition, but how do we do it in today's busy world?

Here are three simple ways you can easily achieve better nutrition in your diet.

1. Drink more water

Good hydration is the cornerstone of achieving better nutrition. When you’re well hydrated your:

  • Skin is healthier
  • Digestion is improved
  • Bowels move better
  • Blood carries more oxygen
  • Snacking is reduced

Exercise, general movement and even focusing on tasks is also easier when you consume good levels of water. However, with the widespread availability and popularity of soft drinks, coffee and even sports drinks, water is often overlooked and many of us are dehydrated without even knowing it.

Most bottled beverages contain very little nutrition and are generally high in sugar or other additives that make you more prone to dehydration and weight gain over time. While having a mid-morning soft drink or sports drink might be part of your daily ritual, if you want to achieve better nutrition quickly, ditch your bottled beverage for a glass of water. You will enjoy the health benefits and your bank account will thank you too.

2. Make your plate colourful

Our modern-day diet looks nothing like our grandparents’ did. With the increased availability and affordability of fast food, junk food and highly processed long life shelf products, many of our grandparents wouldn’t even recognise what was on our plates anymore.

If you want better nutrition, then you need to really look at what you and your family are eating, including all the snacks. Is it full of convenience foods and takeaways, or is it a rainbow of colours and textures made up of fresh foods?

By substituting fast food, processed snacks and junk food for whole food options, you achieve better nutrition immediately. Whole foods are unprocessed, or very minimally processed food options.

Some common whole foods are:

  • Fresh fruit
  • Vegetables
  • Nuts
  • Seeds
  • Legumes
  • Grains- including flour

These foods are packed full of nutrition and are generally easier for our body to digest and turn into energy.

Highly processed foods on the other hand contain little nutritional value and are often ‘hollow’ foods.  This means they fill you up, but they don’t do much else. These foods should be kept as treat foods or for special occasions only.  Believe me, you and your children will appreciate them far more when they aren’t a part of your daily diet.  Although some of our patients report that after eating healthy whole foods, they actually don’t enjoy eating “hollow” foods any more.

Reducing the amount of highly processed foods you eat has a big impact on your overall health, and can be as simple as swapping your daily muesli bar for a piece of fresh fruit.

3. Eat breakfast every day

When life gets busy, breakfast is often one of the first things to be skipped. While this feels like it saves you time and  is perhaps a way to cut back on food intake – the opposite is true.

Sitting down to a healthy family breakfast is without doubt the best way to kick-start your day.

Having a healthy breakfast everyday:

  • Improves concentration and short-term memory
  • Increases the likelihood you and your child will maintain a healthy weight
  • Improves focus in the office and in the classroom
  • Improves your mood and how you handle emotions

Getting breakfast on the table doesn’t have to be a chore, it could be as simple as:

  • Weetbix, banana and milk
  • Fruit salad with unsweetened yogurt
  • Untoasted muesli and milk

If you are really feeling the time pinch in the morning, preparing breakfast, and setting the table the night before is a great way to ensure you sit down for breakfast together. Better nutrition for your family ready does start with your first meal of the day.

Need help to make sustainable lifestyle changes?

At Childhood Obesity Prevention, we understand that sometimes you and your children may need extra support to make sustainable changes to your lifestyle. If you have concerns about the choices you are making as a family, and their impact on your health, we are here to help. We have a range of support options available to suit your family, from self-guiding your journey to healthier eating habits with our book Ride to Life, through to personal consultations.