Healthy eating can be a challenge for many people. One of the common reasons we may struggle to maintain a healthy diet? There is a misunderstanding of which foods are good and bad. It may seem obvious that processed foods like potato chips can hinder a well-balanced diet, but there are some surprisingly healthy foods we don’t have to give up!
It’s a common misconception that all fat is bad. Healthy fats are essential to promote cell growth and keep our bodies energized. Avocados contribute to good cholesterol levels and have more potassium than bananas, but keep portion control in mind. The recommended serving size is about one-third, since avocados are high in calories.
Dark chocolate, which has more cocoa and less sugar than milk and white varieties, contains flavonoids that may protect against cell damage and lower blood pressure. However, these health benefits are not an excuse to eat a whole candy bar every day. Break off a square to satisfy your sweet tooth!
Studies show that drinking coffee on a regular basis may lower your risk of diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease. This does not apply to coffee loaded with cream and sugar or sweetened with flavor shots. If you don’t like black coffee, it can be naturally sweetened with cinnamon or stevia.
Honey is a natural sweetener that’s full of antioxidants. It’s also good for digestion and can soothe a cough or sore throat! Honey does contain sugar and should be used in moderation, but can add sweetness to tea, yogurt or oatmeal with less guilt.
5. Lean Red Meat
We’re not talking about greasy hamburgers or a marbled ribeye. Lean cuts of red meat that have been trimmed of fat have protein, omega-3s, vitamins and minerals our bodies need. However, it should be eaten in small portions no more than a few times per week.
6. Peanut Butter
Whether or not peanut butter is good for us seems to be an ongoing argument. It is high in calories and fat but contains protein, vitamins and minerals that can promote heart health, lower cholesterol levels and may prevent diabetes.
This whole grain snack is loaded with fiber, vitamins and antioxidants that can protect us from disease and cell damage. However, it should not be layered with salt and butter or dipped in a caramel or chocolate coating.
Starch is often avoided on diets, but potatoes have heart-healthy nutrients, vitamins and minerals, especially in the skins. The way we prepare potatoes can easily strip them of their nutritional value, so be careful about adding cheese and butter or dressing cold potatoes with high fat mayonnaise.
Another deterrent to healthy eating can be going out to restaurants. At Colony Diner, our extensive menu has many healthy options, including vegan and gluten-free items. Visit us for breakfast, lunch or dinner today!