As the pandemic continues to affect regular routines and keeps people home more than usual, many people's commitment to eating healthy has fallen by the wayside. Fewer trips to the store and limited access to some foods can make healthy eating seem like a daunting task. And being stressed or bored doesn't help.
But it's easier than you think to get your eating habits back on track. Taking control of your eating may help you handle stress better, avoid weight gain and even boost your immune system. Take this quiz to see which habits can help.
Eating healthier means completely avoiding comfort foods and treats.
Pandemic life can be pretty stressful and restrictive, but food is one pleasure we can still enjoy. Eating your favorite foods – whether mac and cheese, pizza, ice cream or chocolate chip cookies – is okay, just practice moderation. When you do indulge, eat a small portion and savor it. It'll help cravings from getting out of control and may even reduce stress or boost your mood.
Skip frozen or canned fruits and vegetables because they're not as healthy as fresh.
Frozen and canned fruits and vegetables are a great way to keep healthy foods on hand when you can't make frequent trips to the supermarket. They provide the same nutrients as fresh produce if you choose varieties without high-calorie sauces or added salt and sugar.
Eating more plant-based protein is a smart healthy eating strategy.
Plant-based proteins are convenient and healthy alternatives to meat. Budget-friendly quinoa, lentils, beans, chickpeas and nuts are protein-rich foods that also provide fiber, magnesium and zinc to help keep your immune system functioning at its best. They store well and aren't subject to the same sporadic shortages you may be experiencing with meat now.
It's a good idea to eat several small meals a day.
With so much time spent at home, it's easy to graze all day. A regular eating routine can help you manage calorie and nutrient intake throughout the day and can also help you regulate your appetite over time. Plan for a couple of healthy snacks in between meals if needed.
Drinking water is as important as ever.
One of the easiest ways to do your body good is to drink water. And you need to drink even if you're in the house and not outside in the heat. If you don't like plain water, add lemon, berries or cucumber for a hint of flavor.
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Date Last Reviewed: May 14, 2020
Editorial Review: Andrea Cohen, Editorial Director, Baldwin Publishing, Inc. Contact Editor