Eating healthy doesn't come easily to everyone. If you're like me, chomping on natural foods just doesn't feel natural, and eating healthy is about constant mental trickery, fooling your future self into snacking on nuts instead of Krispy Kreme. But there are a few simple things I keep around the house that make this much, much easier.
Top image by Alexandre Nunes (Shutterstock)
I'm one of those people who can't have anything sweet in the house. If there are biscuits, they get eaten straight away. Lord help me if there's chocolate. So I keep all those things out, and only have around organic veggies to snack on. Trouble is, with the likes of Menulog existing in the world today, sometimes I look at my fridge and find it all too boring, and proceed to order Thai delivery.
Preparing food is also quite boring for me (10-30 minutes I could've spent playing games), so I keep things very simple. Your own personal version of this list might have more complicated elements. Maybe you like to mix in pine nuts with your salad. More power to you.
This list also isn't great if you're really trying to cut out sugar, including natural sugars and carbs. Again, more power to you. But if you always have these things around (and whatever else your pleasure might be), it'll go a long way towards making meals taste good without erasing their standard of health.
Mmm, hummus. All those raw carrots you've got in the fridge, or some cucumbers, or even crackers... A little bit of hummus makes them so much more interesting. Get a spicy flavour if that's your thing. Having a few containers of this stuff around will make you get creative with how many things go with hummus. It turns out, it's a lot of things.
Sure, it's bread. But look how much bread you're not eating because they're wraps! For the time poor or those who just can't be bothered with preparation, you can pretty much pop anything on one of these and it's a bit more fun. I tend to open my veggie container, take a fistful of iceberg lettuce, break some raw mushrooms, maybe a bit of lean meat if I have it, and boom. A good, healthy wrap for lunch.
For those who want the benefits of canned tuna without the ethical quandaries, or the mercury. Shops usually stock less Salmon, but it's not hard to find, and you can mix it in with just about anything in a pinch. Put some in your salad. Put some in your wrap. Put them on crackers. In my less proud moments, I can be caught just eating it out of the can.
A simple one, but effective. How much more excited are you to have that salad now that you know there's some balsamic on the table? It can make even the most bland bunch of leaves eatable.
They're a bit expensive, but if it gets you eating well, it's worth it. I'm putting this on more and more of what I eat, and if it doesn't seem like they go well together, I figure out how to make it work. Like baking an egg inside of one for breakfast. Avocados are a "super food", and taste super good.
You know what? I actually don't mind the taste of most powdered protein. Not all formulas or occasions require you to have had a huge workout to justify a lazy protein mix, and you don't have to be a bodybuilder. Sometimes it's intended to be a meal replacement, or something to tide you over. The main downside I've found in using it as a meal replacement is it doesn't last long — expect to be quite hungry again in two hours.
Hey, honey has some health benefits. Especially when it comes to illnesses, or sore throats & coughs. It can be great in tea, or on a whole bunch of different foods. Even foods that aren't oatmeal.
This is the big one. This is my trump card. Anything, and I mean anything, is made better with Tobasco. If you have a chili sauce that you like better, or maybe you prefer something like soy sauce, replace it with that. But for me, it's all about this little red bottle. Back in the days of having a metabolism, I'd pop this on pizza, burgers, chips... Now, I put it on all my greens, lean meats, salads, fish, or anything else.
There's no such thing as a comprehensive list here though, and there's no accounting for taste or preference, so if you've got your own trump card, share it below!