Friday, May 23, 2014

10 Tips for Eating Healthy on a Restricted Diet

It is possible to eat unhealthy, even if you're on a diet that restricts foods. Just a few years ago, people who had to eat gluten, dairy, sugar, peanut, and etc free were pretty limited to what they could eat. But now, there is so many options! Don't get me wrong, I love being able to feel like I can enjoy foods again. But does that make them healthy? Some yes are healthy. But others, not so much. It's all about reading the labels and what the ingredients are. A lot of products that are gluten and dairy free can contain extra sugars and other ingredients to make them, taste "normal" and those are things you want to avoid.  Even though I have been eating very healthy, I was adding more starches because I didn't have any actual wheat and my body and I was feeling deprived. So I loaded up on rice and potatoes to fill that gap. Since I couldn't have dairy, I was eating more of the products that were dairy free, just would go overboard a little. Once I realized what I was doing, I knew there had to more changes made. After making these changes, I can tell I do have more energy and I also don't feel as bloated. A lot of those special diets foods still contain salt, and you are consuming more of it when you feel deprived. 

Recently, I've decided to not eat as much meat, like chicken, turkey, and beef. I completely eliminated any pork and pork products just because I hate pork and it contains a higher number of viruses that could get me sick. I've added more fish into my diet instead.

So here are my 10 tips for eating healthy on a restricted diet. 

1. Swap white & brown rice for quinoa.
2. Limit your intake on gluten free breads and pastas.
3. Avoid prepackaged meals, even if they say they are organic.
4. Limit any processed foods. 
5. Fill up on vegetables
6. Make dinner your smallest meal of the day
7. Drink a cup of water before a meal
8. Buy local and fresh
9. Allow a treat meal or snack once in awhile. 
10. Avoid processed sugars. 

Eating healthy is easy. But don't get caught up in all the speciality foods or you'll be eating processed foods all over again. Just stick to the basics for most days, and allow a treat or two here and there.