1. Eat at regular intervals (every 3-4hrs is a good starting point)
Eating at regular intervals will help to create the habit of not letting yourself get to the ‘red zone’, that zone where when you see any food you will take it, and in large quantities (“give me anything now!”). Eating regularly builds an internal clock that contributes to keeping your energy levels and focus high throughout your day..
2. Aim to have a slightly larger lunch and try to keep your evening meal relatively light.
Eating too much at night or before going to bed does not allow your body to properly break down the food. At night your body slows operations down and begins repairing itself, having a big meal right before bed does not allow your body to fully rest as it is then busy trying to digest. Also, it’s more likely that you wake up next morning still tasting the food from the night before. A lighter meal and waiting at least 1hr between when you eat and go to bed, will contribute to a better night's sleep, which means better recovery from the day.
3. Snacking on things like fruits, berries, nuts and seeds when you feel peckish is perfectly fine - try to avoid ‘empty calories’ from chocolate bars or processed snacks
Berries and fruits are packed with phytonutrients which your body can process into glucose and therefore energy. These are natural, and although sugar, they are natural sugars. In addition, eating fruits is a good way to increase your fibre intake, which helps in digestive processes. Nuts contain natural sources of fat as well as being an excellent way to get a bit of a protein boost. Finally, seeds are probably the most versatile, containing protein, fats and natural oils.
4. Keep yourself hydrated throughout the day, this helps to flush away toxins in your body
Water is vital throughout the day, your brain needs it most, however the rest of your body is also consuming a lot of it. It’s not necessary to drown yourself in water, however drinking 2L a day is a good marker depending how active you are.
5. Varying what you eat is as important as what you eat. Make sure to mix it up when going to the supermarket.
Your body needs variety when it comes to food. We are designed as hunter gatherers…imagine if our ancestors only ate chicken and rice! We need to have a good balance between green leafy vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, meats (or their alternatives), legumes and so on. Our body needs plenty of nutrients, some foods have more than others, so wouldn’t it be good to make sure we are getting what we need? Get creative and have fun with it! Try to think of foods that you don’t normally see on your plate or in your kitchen and include them once in a while. You can make this a chance to share new recipes with friends and family.