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3 Ways You Can Eat Healthier

3 Ways You Can Eat Healthier

When it comes to making health and wellness changes, the key is to focus on:


1. Setting small, doable goals

2. Being kind and patient with yourself


For example, it can be difficult to go from four hours of sleep to a full eight—overnight. Instead, consider reframing your goal to, “I’d like to get six hours of sleep three nights this week.” When stated this way, it may feel more doable for you.


Here’s another way to put this shift to work. Let’s say it’s been a long time since you’ve exercised. Instead of proclaiming, “I’m going to hit the gym every morning at 5am” try this, “I’m going to move my body for 30 minutes three times this week.” When you hit your goal you’ll feel fantastic about yourself and motivated to do more!


Now let’s dig into reframing food goals

Work, family, school…with all of life’s demands it can be difficult to find time to plan, shop and cook.


It can also be overwhelming to know which foods are the best sources of fuel for your body. And with the distractions of the digital and streaming world, it can sometimes feel impossible to actually sit and eat healthfully.


Here are a few tips that can help you eat better—starting today!


1. Make meal planning a priority

Setting time aside each week to plan out your meals can make shopping faster and easier—especially on your wallet!


Determine when you can block off time each week to create your menu, build your grocery list and shop. Perhaps first thing in the morning, before your house wakes up, is the ideal time for you. Maybe it’s one day during the workweek while you’re on your lunch break. Or perhaps it’s Sunday during half time!


Again, set a goal that is realistic for you. If you’ve never meal prepped before, try planning out one or two recipes to make this week and then gradually scale up from there. Make sure to start with selecting meals that are easy for you to cook. This is not the time to venture into the world of complicated cuisine or obscure ingredients!


To save even more time, try placing your grocery order online and either pick it up or have it delivered.


Once you’ve got your meal planning and shopping time in place, schedule a time to cook.


Consider cooking in batches if whipping up dinner each night just won’t work. Remember that leftovers can be a great way to minimize cooking and maximize healthy eating. When you cook once, and eat twice or more using leftovers (don’t forget about lunch) it can make eating healthier easier, enjoyable and part of your routine.


2. Focus on whole vs. packaged foods

Packaged, processed foods have become staples in the Standard American Diet. While these meals might be quick and enthusiastically devoured by the pickiest eaters, they come at a cost to our long-term health, and to our waistline.


Instead of grabbing a meal that comes in a box or bag try setting a healthier, whole food goal that is feasible for your family. Before you know it, meals built around whole foods will become the staples of your eating plan. Think roasted chicken vs. chicken nuggets.


Whole foods are better sources of fuel for your body. They typically have more fiber, vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients than their packaged counterparts.


There’s another benefit to eating whole foods and limiting packaged foods. Packaged foods tend to contain trans fats, sodium, sugar and other unwanted additives. A diet packed with these ingredients can lead to chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes and obesity.


There may be times when meal prepping just doesn’t happen. When you find yourself running into the grocery store after work, instead of stopping for take-out (consider that a win in itself) try shopping the perimeter.


The perimeter is almost always home to whole foods—fresh and frozen fruits and vegetables, meat, chicken, seafood, eggs and dairy.


Changing up your snack routine is also a great starting point when it comes to healthier eating. It’s easy, and tempting, to snack on chips, cookies and soda. Try swapping out these items with fruit, vegetables and hummus, or nuts and seeds.


If you have your personalized food list handy that’s even better! Your list will rank the best fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, nuts, seeds and legumes for your body.


3. Practice mindful eating

Mindful eating keeps you in control during mealtimes. It involves limiting distractions, slowing down while chewing, and listening to your body for it to signal when it’s full.


Many of us are mealtime multi-taskers. We take our meals while sitting at our desks, driving, scrolling on our screen, and streaming on our TV. When we’re multi-tasking, we're not fully present. This can result in unintended overeating and the taking in of more calories.


Mindless eating also distracts us from the enjoyment and flavors of the food we’re eating. We may find our plate empty and realize we never even tasted our meal. This can make it challenging to feel satisfied after eating, which makes it difficult to stop eating when we’re full.


Mindless eating also distracts us from the enjoyment and flavors of the food we’re eating. We may find our plate empty and realize we never even tasted our meal. This can make it challenging to feel satisfied after eating, which makes it difficult to stop eating when we’re full.


When you’re out to dinner with friends or colleagues, throw a bit of friendly competition out on the table. Challenge them to put their phones away for the duration of the meal. The person who peeks first, picks up the check.


Small changes can make a big difference

Don’t be tricked by an all or nothing mindset. Making lasting changes start with one small change after another. It may take more time to establish healthier habits, but these changes will be built on strong foundations that last.


Remember: Every food choice, no matter how large or how small, is an opportunity to make a choice that is better for our bodies.


To learn which food choices are the most beneficial to you, take a look at a sample personalized nutrition report and food list.

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