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Maintaining a healthy diet, whether you’re trying to lose fat, boost athletic performance, or improve your general health, is one of the ways to go about achieving your goal. If you’ve tried sticking to eating healthy before but found yourself letting the good habit slip away day by day, don’t be discouraged because you’re not alone.  

Luckily for us all, there are a couple of things we can do to help make sustaining a healthy diet easier and more convenient. Try out Sports Nutritionist James’ 6 simple tips!

1. Prepare your ingredients in advance

Shave time off cooking by chopping your vegetables and marinating your meats in advance. This will save you hours (and washing) when you throw together some meals for yourself or your family later on.

Feel free to buy frozen vegetables if you must. Many of them are pre-chopped and ready to cook. Plus, the super low temperature ensures that the nutrients are locked in. making them not only convenient but nutritious too. 

2. Invest in time-saving kitchen appliances 

You don’t need to spend hours in the kitchen to cook your meals, and you certainly don’t need to be a master chef to be able to fuel yourself with delicious food. 

Investing in time-saving kitchen appliances like an oven, blender, sous vide machine and/or a rice cooker can help you get a nice meal out at a fraction of the time you need to spend in the kitchen.

3. Fill your plate with lots of vegetables

Especially on days when you’re less active, you won’t need as much energy. Filling your plate with an abundance of vegetables will help keep your food volume sufficient while reducing the number of calories to what your body needs on those days.

4. If it doesn’t fit the goal, don’t let it into the kitchen

Now that a lot of us are spending more time at home, whether we’re working from or just cooped up in bed, there’s one thing that might be tempting all day long. SNACKS. 

It could be because you’re bored or stressed out, but the one answer to getting some sort of comfort back again is most likely going to be food. While you don’t have to stop eating or snacking, you do want to avoid dishing in too many high-calorie foods into your body. 

A typical rule of thumb is to not keep anything that doesn’t fit your goal in the house. Unfortunately, it’s easier said than done, so if you absolutely must have a packet of potato chips in the house, you're best hiding it somewhere that you can’t see it. 

Meanwhile, stock up on snacks that will help bring you closer to your goals. A lean protein snack like eggs or lean beef jerky will come in handy to regulate your appetite, while some fruit and vegetables will help you get some of the nutrients your body needs. 

5. Always have emergency food lying around

Here’s a nifty trick to avoid the hungry hippo situation. Yes, the one where you eat a truckload of junk food because you don’t feel like cooking, or simply have too much work to do. 

Keeping low to no-cook foods such as skimmed milk, yogurt, oatmeal, muesli, salad greens, or pre-chopped fruits readily available will eliminate the chances of you coming up with any excuses for not snacking healthy. You can easily mix some oats, milk, nuts, and berries together to get a healthy snack ready in less than 2 minutes.

6. Keep things simple

Ultimately, practical nutrition is not supposed to be hard. If you prepare in advance, build up a routine and have a few useful recipes to curb your hunger according to your own goals and preferences, cooking in the kitchen should and will be super easy. And if not, plan some days out that gives you an allowance to order in or eat out! 

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