We’re all aware that eating healthy is important. But, why doesn’t the ability to enjoy a juicy cheeseburger after clocking in more than 15 hours of work?
The truth is, it can get tricky to always eat healthy as an entrepreneur. But, it’s absolutely necessarily. Besides preventing health problems like obesity and heart disease, obtaining proper nutrition can help your brain function in areas like alertness and concentration.
To ensure that you eat healthy, here are six health hacks that you should start following today.
1. Drink Your Veggies
I remember the first time I saw a Nutribullet in use. It was loud and it honestly didn’t look appealing. But, after I gave it a try, the final result was pretty delicious - and extremely healthy. Best of all? It only takes a couple of minutes to blend. Just throw in your favorite fruits, veggies, or nuts and blend. Another perk with using some type of equipment like a Nutribullet is that you drink out of the same cup that was used to blend the items meaning that you can just grab and go.
This is a great breakfast or snack alternative.
2. Swap Ingredients
Another easy hack to eat healthier is the swap ingredients. Jennifer D’Angelo Friedman suggests in Shape Magazine that you can replace the following items;
- Replace dairy products, like butter or mayo, with avocados.
- Add black beans in treats like brownies to prevent blood sugar spikes.
- Use frozen organic edamame as ice cubes in a shake.
- Replace mashed potatoes with cauliflower. You can also use cauliflower to make soups.
- Marinate salmon, pork, steak, bison, and chicken with coffee.
- Replace white flour with oats when making pancakes.
- Add a little bit of dark chocolate and drizzle it over your fruits.
These replacements aren’t just healthier, they’re also easy-to-implement. None of these changes are difficult - they just require a small change in your mindset, and a willingness to put your health in the "essential for your good," column of your life.
3. Fast Intermittently
As entrepreneurs, we’re busy. Between all of the hours that we work and the traveling that comes with the job, it’s easy for our eating habits to suffer. Instead of visiting a vending machine or a fast food joint whenever you’re hungry, create a pattern of eating.
James Clear suggests something known as intermittent fasting. It’s not a diet, but actually “a way of scheduling your meals so that you get the most out of them.” Furthermore, “intermittent fasting doesn’t change what you eat, it changes when you eat.” So, not only can it keep the weight off, it’s actually easy to implement.
Intermittent fasting works because it involves daily 16 hour fasts, or fasting for 24 hours, twice per week. In other words, you have a window, let’s say 8 hours between 8am and 4pm when you eat, but you won’t eat until 8am the next day. Some people merely say that they will not eat after 6pm - ever, and that can make all the difference in their weight and mental alertness.
It may sound crazy at first, but you’ll actually find that you’ll not only maintain a healthy weight, this action simplifies your day since you'll drink a glass of water instead of running in to quickly make a huge breakfast when you first wake up.
4. Plan Your Meals Ahead
Planning your meals in advance isn’t just a clever way to stay productive since it reduces stress and saves a lot of time. But, planning your meals ahead of time is one of the most effective ways to stay healthy. It ensures that you shop and have your planned items in your kitchen and that you’re consuming healthier options instead of just grabbing your favorite junk food.
The Kitchn has some excellent weekly meal planning tips to help you get started with your goal of being healthier, which includes;
- Keep a lookout for delicious recipes so that you can make grocery lists.
- Have a place to keep your favorite recipes. Pinterest is a great place to do this task.
- Ask others in your household what they like to eat.
- Check the weather. I know when it’s cold I’m craving soup. But, if it’s beautiful spring day, I want to fire up the grill.
- Keep a meal journal.
- Start a calendar.
- Have theme nights, Taco Tuesday. Easy to remember.
- Choose a shopping day and make a list.
- Check to see what items are on sale at your local grocery store.
- Plan to eat leftovers.
- Start prepping your food, such as chopping onions, as soon as you get back from the store. Also note that nowadays, most stores have a section where all the chopping is already done and put in containers. This can save you time, as well.
- Actually start cooking some components of a meal, like spaghetti sauce, ahead of time.
- Don’t be afraid to freeze some of the food that you’ve prepped or cooked. Put single portions in a baggie to grab out of the fridge or freezer for quick meals.
- Keep the fridge light, but have a well-stocked pantry with items like canned tuna fish, diced tomatoes, low-sodium beans, mixed nuts, and whole grain oats.
It may take a little work in getting started, but once you make these ideas a part of your schedule and life, you’ll be able to plan your meals daily, weekly, or even monthly in advance, and the actions will become automatic to you.
5. Have Someone Else Do the Shopping/Cooking
What if you actually enjoy cooking, but don’t have the time to visit the grocery every week? As you’ve probably seen, there’s no shortage of food delivery services like Blue Apron, Plated, or Hello Fresh where fresh ingredients, along with recipes, are delivered to your home.
If you’re really tight on time, or just don’t enjoy cooking, you don’t have to order a pizza. There are also plenty of companies offering healthy and personalized pre-made meals options. Besides Home Appetit, Magic Kitchen, and Real Food Works, do a search and see what companies are providing this type of service in your town.
6. Keep it Simple
Finally, and maybe most importantly, keep your healthy eating as simple as possible. You don’t need to jump on board the latest fad or diet-craze. Eat as many fresh foods as you can, like fruits and veggies, along with high-quality proteins (salmon, tofu, beans), complex carbs (brown rice, quinoa), and healthy fats (avocados, nuts).The more complex your eating habits are going to get, the less likely you are continue eating healthy. To eat well, prepare and eat simply.
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