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Strategies for improving your diet

It's hard to overstate how important maintaining a healthy and balanced diet can be for your overall wellness. In addition to providing you with beneficial vitamins, minerals and other nutrients your body needs to function properly, good dietary practices can help you manage your weight and contribute significantly to your overall health and well-being. Working to prevent becoming overweight or obese can reduce your stress levels, improve the health of your cardiovascular system and even reduce frequent back pain.

However, keeping up with a diet can be easier said than done. While you might find you have no difficulty incorporating more fruits and vegetables into your diet, fighting the urge to snack on junk food may be more difficult as the weeks press on. Here are some basic strategies for managing your hunger when it strikes.

1. Eat a good breakfast every day

One of the best ways to avoid succumbing to the desire to snack is to eat healthy, regular meals throughout the day. In particular, Prevention magazine reports that eating breakfast every day is essential to successful weight management goals.
Aiming to consume at least 250 calories before noon can keep you from becoming overly hungry later on in the day. If you feel like you don't have time to prepare your breakfast in the morning, the try organizing your meal the night before or eating foods that are easy to keep at work, such as small boxes of cereal or oats.
This simple strategy is not only effective in managing hunger cravings throughout the day, but can also be a financial advantage as it drives you to eat out less frequently.

2. Limit alcohol and caffeine consumption

You may have noticed that your stomach begins to growl after you enjoy a bottle of beer or a cup of coffee. According to the AARP, both of these substances can play a part in your battle with hunger, so it's best to reduce your overall consumption during your diet.
If you don't want to live without the occasional beer or your morning coffee, there are ways you can have your cake and eat it, too. Only drinking a single cup of coffee when you start the day and saving beer or mixed drinks for special occasions can help you avoid snacking excessively.
Alcohol and caffeine, like most things, are fine in moderation but can easily be over consumed. Be aware that their effect on your diet and snacking habits can be negative and pick your times to have them wisely.

3. Don't use food and your diet as a crutch

Sometimes people turn to a bag of potato chips or package of cookies when they're feeling sad, stressed or out of sorts. However, TasteOfHome.com reports that you should avoid eating as a method of coping with difficult situations in your life. This is because anxiety and stress may push you to consume foods that are low in nutrients and high in salt, sugar or fat.
Instead, look to other calorie burning outlets for sources of stress or anxiety relief. Many people gravitate towards sports, exercise, yoga and even meditation as outlets for stress, allowing them to get both exercise and alleviate stress at the same time.

Enjoy eating and make the best of it

Food and eating in general can be one of the great simple joys in life and is one of the only things on the planet that all people do. Bring a positive, responsible and embracing approach to your diet each and every day and it will pay you back with a strong, healthy and durable body.

Look at your diet not as a nuisance but as an opportunity to turn a simple daily necessity into something that can help you shed pounds, get stronger, feel better, and avoid the many hundreds of risks associated with obesity.

Allow your diet to help you live pain free.

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