In part 2 of this article about habits that can ruin your health we will continue our look at the top 50 worst health related habits.
21. You Eat In Groups
While having a strong social network is important, eating in a big group can cause you to eat more than would normally… by double or more! Especially when you have family around the table encouraging you to eat more.
22. You Won’t Pack A Lunch
You’ll consume more calories if you grab lunch on the go – so start packing your lunches so you know exactly what you’re eating every day. When you plan your meals at the start of each week (or month) don’t forget to plan your daily lunches, too. There are plenty of options you can make in bulk and portion out for your week.
23. The Candy Bowl
You might think it’s just a handful of candies, but they add up – so avoid candy bowls, whether they’re in your home, the office, or at the bank.
24. Sodium Counts
You can stop blaming water weight; the guilty party is more than likely sodium (especially if you’re partial to eating out). When cooking at home skip the salt and add herbs, if you’re out? Order as healthy as possible.
25. Lack Of Protein
Lean protein is a must in every diet and your muscle and cell health depend on it. This is especially important for vegans and vegetarians – you need an alternative protein source and plenty of it, so don’t miss out.
You cut sugar out and embraced those colorful sachets, but the problem is they can increase bloating and lead to weight gain. If you have a belly you just can’t shift, reconsider your beverage sweetening options.
27. Processed Foods
The less processed foods you eat the better because once you pop, well… you really can’t stop. Scientists sit in a food creation lab and come up with ways to make them addictive, so beat the bite by avoiding them altogether.
28. You’re Missing Your 5 A Day
You need your fruits and vegetables, they provide you with all the nutrients and vitamins your body needs so you shouldn’t just be eating your five a day, you should be exceeding it.
29. Dessert Display
Put your snacks away, hide them from sight, and forget they exist. You’re more likely to indulge if they’re front and center. That means if you keep them in a clear jar or dish, well, you shouldn’t.
30. Freezer Full Of Ice Cream
If you know you have a weakness for particular snacks just don’t buy them. You can’t be tempted if they’re not in the house. If you have to buy certain snacks for the family then create snack bags with your calorie hit to save overeating.
31. A Lack Of Fiber
Every diet needs fiber and a lack might just be indicative of your unhealthy waistline. Fiber is also key to digestive health.
32. Peanut Butter
Healthy fats, like avocados, nut butters, oatmeal, and dark chocolate, are good for you – but like any good thing, too much of it can result in weight gain. Therefore, unless you’re eating a fruit or vegetable don’t assume that healthy fat is low-calorie.
Consider your portions – a portion of nut butter (or grated cheese) should be ping-pong ball sized.
33. You Skip The Half Rule
Half of your meal plate should have fruits and vegetables on it and if that isn’t the case then it’s time for a rethink. It isn’t as difficult to do as it sounds either, a big portion of broccoli can take up a quarter of your plate alone, throw in some peas and corn and you’re there.
34. The Healthy Menu Items
We mentioned above you should choose healthy options when you eat out, but choosing something from the menu that says light can have the opposite effect. It might be light on certain ingredients while heavy on others so it isn’t as healthy as it seems. Therefore, while the house salad and the soup might seem like the best options – they’re not. If you order the salad, make sure you get the dressing on the side and choose a grilled protein for the top of it.
35. Dessert Sharing
Do you hate sharing food? We all do, but when it comes to desserts, you should split that calorie count – you get to enjoy dessert and don’t have to over-indulge.
36. You Miss Light Sauce
The majority of restaurants are happy to go lighter on the sauce if you just ask and believe it or not, that alone can save you a thousand calories in just one meal! Whether you ask them to hold it all the way or just hold back, you’re doing your health a favor.
37. You Miss Dressing On The Side
Always ask for your dressing on the side, it means you can save a few hundred calories by drizzling it on yourself.
38. Your Seating Arrangement
If you sit in a dark booth… you’re more likely to order dessert. Ask your server for a well-lit table.
39. You Let Everyone Else Order First
Always order first if you want to choose healthy options while eating out, others ordering before you could sway you into an unhealthy choice.
40. You Refuse The Salad
Starting your meal with a salad will reduce your overall calorie count for the rest of the meal. You might feel bad about leaving food on the plate, but your waistline will thank you.
41. Condiment Crazy
Go heavier on the herbs in your cooking to save yourself from using condiments. Where possible, stick to just one condiment at a time – it could save you a few hundred calories a meal.
42. Forget The Bread Basket
Dinner rolls might be delicious with their warm, salty, fluffy deliciousness but there’s no nutritional benefit to them whatsoever. Resist those empty calories and choose vegetables instead.
43. Super-Size It
A study from Swansea University suspects that you end up consuming more calories if you don’t go super-sized. If you’re going for an indulgence, you might as well order the size you want.
44. Extra Whip, No Foam
Coffee shop hot beverages are calorific to the max, but if you’re going to do it… whatever you do, hold the whip!
45. The Popcorn
Do you find it difficult to go to the movie theater without ordering popcorn? Popcorn can be a healthy treat when you make it at home but at the theater? You’re talking 1,200 calories just for the medium size! That’s over half of your total recommended allowance, so sneak in your own bag of air popped snacks.
46. You Pour More Than One Glass
There’s nothing wrong with enjoying a wine or two come the weekend, but overdoing it can increase your calorie count in the hundreds because it makes you more sensitive to the aromas of food. Plan ahead with healthy snacks and slow your pour.
47. You’re A Couch Potato
You might enjoy a weekend of pure vegetation but it affects your blood flow, adds stress to your lower back, and tightens the hip flexors. So, limit your couch potato relaxation, get up, and get active. Enjoy a long walk in nature, especially if you work a desk job all week.
48. Your Monday Stresses
Do you hate your job so much that you spend the entirety of your Sunday stressing about work on Monday? Those cortisol surges can wreak havoc on hunger hormones and can contribute to your comfort snacking. Therefore, it may be time to find a new job or learn how to effectively manage your stress.
49. You Ditch Your Diet Rules
Eating healthy is a lifestyle, not a diet, so don’t deprive yourself of the foods you love. The only thing that will come from that is overeating and feelings of shame and guilt afterward. Plan your cheat meals for once a week and determine what you will be having in advance. This should prevent you from going off the rails and turning it into a cheat day (or week).
50. You’re Invested In Sports
Sports are an international passion, and a French study from 2013 found that sports fans are far more likely to binge the day after their team loses a big game (From Fan to Fat? Vicarious Losing Increases Unhealthy Eating, but Self-Affirmation Is an Effective Remedy; Cornil, et al). Just knowing this, though, can help you avoid indulgences following a big loss.
You can read part 1 of this article HERE