Ask anyone who’s ever sworn off junk food and vowed to eat better: Eating nutritious foods, especially healthier snacks, can be a huge challenge. Sudden changes from favorite foods to unfamiliar textures and flavors can set you up for failure. If your body is accustomed to a high-fat, high-salt, high-sugar diet, eliminating these foods overnight can result in cravings that derail your diet. A better way to change your eating habits: Make small changes in phases, giving yourself time to get used to the new, healthier addition before making another change.
If your preferred snack is crisp-fried and salty, you’re in luck when it comes to transitioning to healthy eating habits. Here’s a game plan to ease yourself from chips to veggies:
When it comes to cookies, cakes, and pastries, you face the double-whammy of sugar and trans fats. Trans fats can raise cholesterol, and put you at risk for heart disease and diabetes.
If you’re craving:
A graham cracker spread with peanut butter or no-sugar-added jam.
Melt dark chocolate (70% cacao or higher) in the microwave. Dip strawberries, frozen banana chunks, or orange sections.
After you’ve made the transition at home, you may find it hard to resist temptation at parties or events. Navigating the buffet or even knowing which snacks to reach for can be tricky. One way to make it easy on yourself: Offer to bring a few dishes. This way, you’ll know which options fit with your eating plan.