Gilad: I try desperately to eat healthy but 50 years of habits are hard to break. Typically for dinner I will prepare a big salad, some type of lean meat, fish or chicken, a vegetable and starch. Everything is good until later in the evening when I start to crave cookies or ice cream. Do you have any tips to get me out of this cycle?
Answer: There are some very simple practical things that you can do to help yourself.
You sound like you are using fresh ingredients in your meal preparation, but dinner is not the only meal you eat during the course of a day. Avoid processed foods as much as possible because they are major sources of excess sugar, salt and preservatives.
Do not add salt when you are cooking. Never add salt until you have tasted your food and are certain that it needs some....and then use 'lite' salt that is only half salt and half potassium chloride.
If you cook or bake at home try reducing the amount of sugar in your recipes by half. The resulting product will still be delicious and, in most cases, you won't be able to tell the difference.
And finally, if cookies and ice cream are your downfall, don't keep them in the house. Resist the urge to buy them when you are at the grocery store. Try substituting fresh fruit. Make sure you have plenty on hand. Fruit is just like a dessert but with all those extra vitamins and minerals along for the ride.
Keep in mind that your food is the fuel your body runs on. When you are deciding what to eat think to yourself, "What food will give me lots of energy and make me feel good if I eat it?" The more you ask that question the better you will eat.
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