Although we all desire to have a healthy diet that would benefit us and our lifestyle, many of us are still making food mistakes that can negatively affect a healthy nutrition.
So let’s take a look at some typical diet mistakes made even food-savvy consumers:
You buy fresh produce for an entire week
As we already know, once fruits and vegetables are harvested, they start losing some of their vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals. Therefore by keeping them in the crisper all week long you are robbing yourself of nutrition.
So it’s better to buy fresh produce every few days and supplement it with frozen fruits and vegetables. Frozen produce is harvested at its peak and flash-frozen immediately, which protects the nutrients from breaking down for up to a year in the freezer. Make sure to buy frozen produce with no sauces or syrups added though.
You buy excessive processed food
Processed foods usually have more sodium and saturated fat, and less fiber and nutrients. That’s why it’s better to go for the fresh foods and whole foods as much as possible. However when you do opt for convenience products, choose those that contain whole grains, have no trans-fat, and are low in saturated fat.
You don’t take advantage of food synergy
There are all kinds of connections between the various components within certain foods and between certain foods, a concept called "food synergy". For instance, certain phytochemicals in apple peel account for most of apples' healthy antioxidant activity, so peeling apples isn't the healthiest way to go.
According to the American Institute for Cancer Research, it may also be a good idea to let your minced or chopped garlic rest for about 15 minutes before proceeding with cooking. This helps ensure that the enzymatic reaction that starts when garlic is chopped releases as much of the antioxidant allyl sulfur as possible - therefore maximizes the cancer-fighting benefits.
If you're dressing a salad or making a homemade marinara sauce, make sure to add some healthy fats, such as avocado or olive oil. Eating some "good fat" along with your vegetables will help your body absorb healthy phytochemicals, like lycopene from tomatoes and lutein from dark green vegetables. So, enjoying your salad with some avocado or a light dressing made with canola or olive oil is actually important.
Also, when it comes to tomatoes, if you want a maximum nutrient value, make sure you don’t peel them.
You avoid high-fat plant foods
The foods in this category are avocados, nuts, and olives that are rather high in calories and fat however low in saturated fat. These foods provide smart fats to our diet, and they also come with fiber and phytochemicals. Moderation is essential though. So just savor a quarter of an avocado on sandwiches and in salads, or a handful of nuts as a snack or added to your salad, cereal, or pasta. You are welcome to use a light drizzle of olive oil in cooking and add olives to salads, sandwiches or just eat them as a snack.
Do you have any tips that help you out in a healthy eating habit? Share with us in the comments below.