We all know it is easy to adopt unhealthy eating habits. Our society is placing an increasing demand for speed. Everyone wants fast Internet connections, fast banking, fast service at the checkout line and fast food.
When you take into account that most people have a limited amount of time for lunch, and are rushing to get to work on time in the morning, you can see how bad eating habits can easily develop. Getting fit and healthy, losing weight and becoming slim again… those are goals that many struggle to achieve.
But by simply and consistently avoiding the following 5 unhealthy eating habits, you will move closer to realizing all your weight loss, fitness and health dreams.
Unhealthy Eating Habit #1 – Not Eating Breakfast
This may be a surprise to many, but so many studies have proven the benefits of eating breakfast and yet so many people miss out on breakfast. This is probably something you realize you should be doing. Aside from giving you a boost of energy, eating the proper foods before you start your day actually leads to consuming fewer calories.
A University of Texas El Paso study showed that the human body is designed to work more efficiently when a healthy breakfast starts your day. That research showed that consuming any particular amount of calories early in your day fills you up more than the same amount consumed later. This leads to lower calorie consumption, while still providing the energy and nutrition you need
Unhealthy Eating Habit #2 – Drinking With Meals
I bet you didn’t see that one coming! And I am not just talking about alcohol. Just how can drinking while you eat be a bad thing? Most people believe that the liquids you ingest while eating help “wash down” their food. However, drinking during meals actually dilutes the digestive acids in your stomach, causing your stomach to be less efficient at processing the food. It is far better to wait 30 minutes to an hour before enjoying your favourite beverage after you eat.
Fancy a little trick to help you successfully implement this healthy eating habit? Make sure you stay hydrated before you eat and you will be less thirsty during your meal. As a bonus, that liquid consumption helps give you a full feeling, which means you may eat fewer calories.
Unhealthy Eating Habit #3 – Eating Late, Before You Go To Bed
Many believe that the human body does not mind when calories are consumed. So whatever time during the day that you spread out 2,000 calories, it shouldn’t matter, right? Unfortunately, that belief is very wrong! Try not to eat anything from 2 to 3 hours before you go to bed. Eating late is thought by many nutrition and fitness experts to lead to weight gain.
And when you factor in all the negative consequences of eating fatty or spicy foods, or consuming caffeine or simply eating too much right before bedtime, there are plenty of health reasons for avoiding eating late. Your sleep patterns are interrupted as your body is processing food, which can lead to a poor night’s rest.
Unhealthy Eating Habit #4 – Not Packing A Lunch
Almost 85% of the world’s employed population works at a location away from home. This one fact can lead to very poor eating decisions for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Is this your typical day:
- You are rushing in the morning, so you swing by a fast-food restaurant for a quick and inexpensive breakfast.
- You did not pack a lunch the night before, so you hit the nearest diner or trendy restaurant at lunchtime.
- By the time you get home, your hectic workday and poor eating habits mean you are sluggish and do not feel like preparing a healthy meal. So you order take-out or have something delivered.
You can break this vicious cycle by simply packing lunch at home. Not only do you deliver so many long-lasting health benefits when you include nutritious, delicious and energy-providing foods in your midday meal. The repetition of taking time to pack your own healthy lunch encourages preparing your breakfast and dinner meals as well.
Unhealthy Eating Habit #5 – Emotional Eating
This is one of the most common and deadly unhealthy eating habits. Using the term deadly is not an exaggeration here. Studies show that as much as 80% of all sickness originates in your gut and digestive system. And this can be caused by eating the wrong things, at the wrong times, for the wrong reasons.
Humans are emotional beings. Chances are, many times you do not even realize you are eating for emotional reasons. So the next time you are ready to eat anything, ask yourself these questions.
- Why am I eating?
- Am I truly hungry?
- Would a glass of water hold me over until my next regular meal?
- Can I pause and take 5 to 10 minutes to think about my emotional state before I eat?
Those four simple questions will help you identify and combat potentially dangerous emotional eating behaviours. You will start eating the right foods, for the right reasons, at the right times, and feel better and healthier.