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Healthy Eating Habits and Lifestyle Essay

In today’s American society, many individuals have developed unhealthy eating habits. A study done in 2012 states fifty-two percent of polled Americans thought that doing their taxes was easier than trying to figure out how to eat healthy. There are many things that people look at as hassles to healthy eating rather than looking at the big benefits healthy eating has on someone. Many people think of these issues when they think of healthy eating the cost, the availability of the food, that it is “hard”, they do not want to diet, and so on. Changing the eating habits of an individual is not as hard as someone would think. Even though eating healthy can save a persons life, Many people would rather look at the “hassles” to healthy eating because it is easier to do rather than making a big change to their lifestyle. One of the most common things most individuals say is that eating healthy cost too much and the food that is healthy is not always available. Yes during some seasons fruit and vegetables are a little higher in cost. The fruits and vegetables individuals purchase do not have to be fresh produce, they can buy frozen fruits and vegetables during the expensive seasons. Do not buy canned fruits and vegetables though because they are soaked in sodium, preservatives, and high fructose corn syrup.

Sure buying fruits and vegetables involves more work than grabbing something from a drive-thru window or even opening a package and cooking it. However, how much work is being sick? Having to go to the doctor and having to miss school or work because eating unhealthy lead to health issues like heart disease, obesity, and possibly even cancer. Yes eating fast food is very convenient and cheap, but eating fast food is more likely to lead to health problems in the future. Eating healthy along with exercise can completely change an individual’s health and wellness. Healthy eating promotes good health that reduces the risk of chronic diseases like heart disease, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, obesity, and even cancer. Even with the health risks people often make excuses to why they do not eat healthy. “I am too busy.” “I do not know how.” “I do not want to diet”, These are three of the most common answers individuals say when asked why most people do not eat healthy. Everyone has a busy schedule but if everyone wants to continue to be busy and be able to do the things they like to do, they have to be healthy.

Knowing how to eat healthy really is common knowledge. One does not have to go on a strict diet to see healthy changes. When eating healthy do not eat out, only take in little sugar, cut out trans fat, cut out “nonfat” and “lowfat” products, and high processed foods. Also when eating healthy having a low-carbohydrate intake is a wonderful thing. Also when eating healthy, lower your carbohydrate intake. A low-carbohydrate intake minimizes sugar and starches and replaces them with foods that are rich in protein and healthy fats. Look for “real food” which is food that humans had available throughout evolution. Stay away from processed, unnatural foods that have artificial chemicals, these foods can cause you to get sick and fat. Yes most people have cravings for pizza, chips, and other things everyone knows is “unhealthy”. An individual does not want to deprive themselves of what they want, cheating is common when it comes to eating healthy, individuals need allow themselves one cheat day a week to eat whatever they want. Though with healthy eating can seem hard at times, it comes with big lifestyle changes that are more that worth it. Eating healthy can make substantial changes to someones health, wellness, and lifestyle.

Eating healthy has more benefits than anything even exercise. Someone can exercise everyday of the week and still be considered unhealthy because of what they eat. According to MyDebtDiary, as long as long as an individual eats healthy for eighty percent of the time, an individual can indulge in their favorite foods the other twenty percent of the time. Nate Miyaki gives an example, “Of nine training sessions and thirty- five meals or snacks geared toward body composition improvement a week, that works out to about 20% accounted to physical activity and 80% accounted to diet.” Participating in regular exercise is very important but does not mean someone should eat unhealthy. Eating unhealthy causes damage to an individuals insides. When someone eats healthy they find themselves less tired and they also find that they have less health issues than someone that eats unhealthy. When an individual eats better they feel better. Put good in, get good out. So the better an individual eats the better, the more energy they have, the more motivation they have, and they feel better as a whole. Within a week of eating healthy an individual can begin to feel better on the inside. When an individual makes the change to eating healthily they will notice that they feel better and have more energy.

There are more ways to eat healthier without having to diet at all. A great food guide for an athlete to follow is the Canada’s Food Guide. According to the guide an individual needs about sixty percent carbohydrates, fifteen to twenty percent protein, and twenty to thirty percent fat in their daily diet. Healthy eating is more than just about what an individual eats and puts on their plate. Healthy eating is also about how an individual thinks about food, what they eat, and how they eat. When eating it is important to slow down while eating and realize that the food that an individual puts into their body is nourishment, not as something to scarf down in between work and kids practices. It is always good to try and eat with other people whenever possible. There are many social and emotional benefits to eating with others, especially for children, and it also allows individuals to model healthy eating habits. Another thing that most individuals forget about is how bad eating in front of the television and computer is. Eating in front of the television and computer often leads to overeating.

One of the biggest causes of weight gain is sleep deprivation. Sleep is a necessity to recovery to feel good, and a good nights sleep has a wide variety of positive health outcomes. The positive health outcomes range from a healthier body weight and a lower stress level. When an individual has “sleep debt” they can not recover it by sleeping more from night to night. Having a set sleep schedule should be a habit and it is crucial to a healthy lifestyle. When an individual is not exhausted or tired it is easier for sleep patterns to change and those changes can disrupt their schedule. Going to bed and waking up at the same time every day allows an individual’s body to create a rhythm for a healthy metabolism and energy patterns. When one is having trouble going to sleep there are many things one can do. Removing stimulating items like phones, television, and computers an hour before bed because the screens can over stimulate and distract an individual and make it harder for them to fall asleep. Consuming caffeine after three in the afternoon stimulates the nervous system and also affects sleeping patterns. An individual also should avoid large meal before bed. The importance of sleep should not be ignored.

Sleep allows the body and brain to shut down and recover which is crucial for possible health conditions. Sticking to a regular sleep routine allows individuals to wake up with more energy and feel less fatigue throughout the day. When an individual begins to eat healthy, the less natural it feels to reach for a cupcake or a slice of pizza when they get hungry. One should not deprive themselves or force themselves to eat healthy, but an individual should simply make a conscious decision of identifying and respecting what feels best for their body in the long run. When individuals eat healthy, they physically feel good and also feel good mentally as well. Individuals who eat healthy mentally have more energy to go out and do things that care and matter to them. Making the decision to practice healthy eating habits has such significant effects on an individuals in so many ways.

Everyone should take action and begin to maintain a healthy lifestyle choices as much as possible. Most people need motivation to change, gain motivation from others, keep a diary, and talk to others when tempted to indulge in unhealthy choices. Eating healthy is not all about losing the ability to enjoy favorite foods. It is about gaining things that will have a life long effect. Eating healthy leads to a longer life, the ability to enjoy real, natural foods, a healthy sense of self esteem, and pleasure of having respect for the body and all that it does.

References
11 Facts About American Eating Habits. (n.d.). Retrieved October 27, 2014, from https://www.dosomething.org/facts/11-facts-about-american-eating-habits Belval, L. (2013, December 5). HEALTHY HUSKY: Healthy eating habits. Retrieved October 27, 2014, from http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.apollolibrary.com/docview/1465901308?pq-origsite=summon Braverman, J. (2014, January 26). Illnesses Caused by Bad Diet. Retrieved October 27, 2014, from http://www.livestrong.com/article/84174-illnesses-caused-bad-diet/ Cho, M. (n.d.). Five Tricks I Used to Beat My Unhealthy Eating Habits. Retrieved October 27, 2014, from http://lifehacker.com/five-tricks-i-used-to-beat-my-unhealthy-eating-habits-1252241279

Conclusion: Living a Healthy Diet for the Rest of Your Life – Intent Blog. (2009, October 6). Retrieved October 27, 2014, from http://intentblog.com/conclusion-living-healthy-diet-rest-your-life/ Daily, I. (2013, February 1). Healthy Eating Habits Acquired. Retrieved October 27, 2014, from http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.apollolibrary.com/docview/1370960686?pq-origsite=summon How to Eat Healthy, Lose Weight and Feel Awesome Every Day. (n.d.). Retrieved October 27, 2014, from http://authoritynutrition.com/how-to-eat-healthy/ Isacks, K. (n.d.). Weight Loss and Food Diaries | MyNetDiary. Retrieved October 27, 2014, from http://www.mynetdiary.com/the-new-80-20-rule-a-long-held-rule-in-the-dieting.html Kunz, M. (2013, December 18). Does Exercise Offset Unhealthy Eating? Retrieved October 27, 2014, from http://www.livestrong.com/article/548179-does-exercise-offset-unhealthy-eating/ Miyaki, N. (n.d.). The 80/20 Rule of Fitness Nutrition. Retrieved October 27, 2014, from http://natemiyaki.com/2011/03/24/the-8020-rule-of-fitness-nutrition/ Sandilands, M. (1999, September 9). Abnormal eating habits ruin health. Retrieved October 27, 2014, from http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.apollolibrary.com/docview/244805140?pq-origsite=summon Smith, T. (2011, December 21). Top 10 Reasons Why We Don’t Eat Healthy. Retrieved October 27, 2014, from http://patch.com/california/carlsbad/bp–top-10-reasons-why-we-dont-eat-healthy#.VEGgj75H21I Traister, J. (2011, January 17). Pros and Cons for Healthy Food Choices. Retrieved October 27, 2014, from http://www.livestrong.com/article/358976-pros-and-cons-for-healthy-food-choices/


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