Top Five Things To Do When Trying To Eat Healthier – Unconventional Edition


Whenever people decide they want to start eating better, it usually involves following the stereotypical, toxic diet culture notions that can cause more harm to their bodies than good. Diet culture is the pervasive belief that appearance and body shape are more important than physical, psychological, and general well-being and that controlling your body, particularly your diet by limiting what and how much you eat is normal. As someone who is a young athlete, and who also doesn’t eat most meats, I find it important to stay in good health and take care of my body by eating the proper nutrients needed for the activities I do. However, I have had to learn that getting the proper diet I need does not involve any of the usual concepts society has made dieting out to be. In doing so, I have learned five of the biggest tips or guidance points that I wish to share.

  1. It’s not healthy unless there is balance.

A common belief and practice within diets is not having an in-between with how you eat, or if you do have an in-between, it needs to be a tiny grey area. However, this belief is toxic and can encourage unhealthy mental imagery and ideas. When you restrict yourself to eating foods that are not systematically considered healthy in society, the fall when that restriction is broken is more damaging than the break itself. Mental health is just as important as physical when it comes to being healthy. Creating balance by eating a mix of foods usually deemed ‘unhealthy’ and foods considered healthy can not only encourage good mental health but your body can also get the nutrients and indulgence needed.

      2. Finding out what you can add is more beneficial than finding out what you can take away.

This is another tip that goes hand-in-hand with maintaining mental health as well as physical health. Instead of trying to limit yourself from foods you enjoy, try eating enjoyable food along with healthier food. You can even try eating a smaller portion of the “unhealthy food” instead of taking away all of it. In the end, any food will give you some sort of nutrients and energy to keep you running so why not mix them so you not only enjoy your meal but intake multiple nutrients.

      3. You don’t have to spend tons of money to get healthier foods.

        Unfortunately, in America, healthier foods are more commonly priced higher than unhealthier foods. However, there are still plenty of sustainable and cheap ways to find healthy foods, even with the current inflation. Things like doing research about what is available in your community and what is the cheapest out of those, remembering you don’t have to have everything everyone else has, and buying in bulk will all help with keeping a healthy yet affordable budget. 

      4. Start slow and find things you enjoy eating and doing.

If you want to stick to a healthy diet, it’s better you enjoy it rather than being in constant misery because you don’t enjoy what you’re eating. Habits like eating healthy should add to your life and happiness, not take away from it. Starting slow, enjoying yourself, and creating sustainable habits is the best way to stick to routines like this, but it’s also the hardest. It’s important to remember that you are doing this to feel good and it shouldn’t put you in a constant state of sadness.

      5. Only set realistic and attainable goals while not being too hard on yourself if they are not met.

Not only does doing this help you stay motivated to eat healthily, but it creates less room for discouragement and decreases in mental health. People often have a hard time staying on their path of eating healthy once they get discouraged due to a failed goal or goal not being met. By setting realistically attainable goals, the chances of this are lower and you can stay motivated once your goals are met. Even if you have set a realistic goal but you didn’t achieve it, it is important to remember that you are human and will have some setbacks, especially in harder tasks like maintaining a healthy diet, so don’t be too hard on yourself. Instead, think about the things you have already achieved, and even congratulate yourself on them if you want.

Committing to a routine has proven to be easier to make a habit by committing to it for a minimum of 30 days. By following these tips and staying committed to eating healthy, you can be on the right path to creating a long-lasting healthy diet.