Today, Americans are beginning to truly embrace more non-processed foods, with 56 percent reporting they are closely reading labels, and looking for more natural foods with nutritional assets to boot. They are also dieting less. Using a 2012 benchmark, NPD Group reports in a study conducted by National Eating Trends with 5,000 Americans in 2,000 households that in 1992, 35 percent of American women were on a diet, whereas in 2012, this number was much lower, at 23 percent.
Last week, the USDA reported there is a revolution going on among American consumers. Adults are now not only utilizing nutritional information but also making more wholesome choices. This study points the way clearly to a new mindset — that eating wholesome, clean-ingredient foods in moderation is not only be good for your body but also helps you maintain a healthy weight.
Eating better means including five to nine servings of vegetables and fruits per day. Since vegetables and fruits provide fiber and vital minerals and vitamins your body needs, you will feel fuller, become more energetic and discover that your body will know what to do — and your healthy weight will follow. As someone who spends his days concerned about healthy choices in eating plus taste, I believe it’s time to put down the unnatural, unhealthy and often dangerous popular diets that never seem to work in the long run and return to simple basics. Here are four reasons why cutting the diet cord will keep you happy, healthy, and probably looking great.
Gone are the days when your grandmother slaved over a hot stove all day to create natural, slow-cooked meals. Today, with over 122 million Americans working full-time, often in more than one job, it’s not practical to come home exhausted and then prepare dinner for an hour or two. Instead, the frozen food aisle is undergoing a transformation, with gluten-free and wholesome foods leading the way. For breakfast, you can enjoy vegetable-rich, delicious muffins, and for dinner you can also eat a guilt-free desert at the same time, since these muffins’ first two ingredients are vegetables.
Vegetables are nature’s own wholesome, natural diet aids. Vegetables are bursting with fiber, and the USDA recommends filling half of your dinner plate with them. The benefits of fiber in your diet are astounding. Fiber will keep your bowels healthy, aid in losing weight, help control both your blood sugar and cholesterol levels. But filling your plate up with fresh vegetables may not always be practical on a work night, so why not embrace the fiber found in frozen vegetables? Vegetables that are frozen retain all of their nutrients, and plenty of fiber.
If your foods are filled with vegetables and fiber, you will be adding vital nutritional assets to your diet. Eating clean and simple ingredients is always better than ingesting chemically laden, fake foods. Take advantage of the natural bounty your frozen food aisle has to offer, and make wise choices for you and your family. But there is one caveat here: If you choose to embrace “clean, simple” foods, be sure to really read the labels on your food packages. While many companies claim to be using “clean” ingredients, you want to be sure they are not sneaking in unnatural ingredients. Today there are some great choices in convenient foods in frozen as well, such as Garden Lites, which has a variety of vegetable-rich muffins, bites, and macaroni and cheese, with vegetables always as the first ingredient.
Once you truly change your lifestyle and embrace more vegetables and healthy ingredients in your diet, you will notice a subtle shift in your body and your mindset. Why? First of all, you will feel fuller. Working every day on a diet that does not fuel your body isn’t just uncomfortable, but also unhealthy. By allowing your body to relax, and quieting the stress you have of losing weight, while you embrace vegetables and clean ingredient foods, you may just discover that just like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, you had the solution to your problem all along.
Once you adjust your mindset using these simple tips, you will notice your body thanks you in the most meaningful way — with a new zip in your step, sparkle in your eyes, and perhaps the loss of a few extra pounds. Living a life of nutritious and delicious eating is a smarter and healthier choice.