10 Practical Ways to Eat More Fresh Food

Processed food is anything that is canned, cooked or frozen, pasteurized or packed.

You can enjoy a variety of processed foods, such as frozen fruit, canned vegetables and pasteurized dairy products in healthy eating habits. However, some of the processed foods contain sugar, salt additives, preservatives, and additives which could harm your health.

Cutting down on processed and highly processed foods is among the most effective strategies for improving your overall health as well as improve the nutritional quality of your food.

Indeed, when clients contact me for advice on nutrition cutting back on processed food is among my first recommendations.

Here are 10 easy practical, sustainable, and sensible ways to eat less processed foods.

1. Make sure you have healthy snacks available

If you’re short on time, picking up a bagged snack before heading out the door could seem tempting.

But, making sure your kitchen is filled with plenty of portable healthy snacks will help you make healthy choices while on the move.

My favorite healthy snacks are fresh fruit mixed nuts Edamame, and vegetables with Hummus.

If you’re short on time, it’s possible to prepare a few simple snacks in the morning. Eggs that have been hard-boiled and turkey roll-ups homemade kale chips, as well as overnight oats are just a few delicious snacks that you can make quickly and have on hand to eat later.

2. Change refined grains to whole grain

One of the easiest methods to cut down on your consumption of processed food is to swap them in for more nutritious whole foods.

Particularly, you can change refined grains such as rice, white pasta bread, tortillas, and pasta to whole grain alternatives like brown rice and whole grain pasta, bread and tortillas.

Not just do the whole grain varieties more nutritious such as fiber, they’ve also been found to help protect against diseases such as diabetes, heart disease and certain kinds of cancer.

3. Be creative in the kitchen

If you’re looking for a challenge and want to try something new, give your favorite processed food items a healthy change by making the recipes within your home kitchen. You’ll have complete control of the food you put on your plate , while exploring interesting new ingredients.

You can, for instance, prepare veggie chippings by mixing potatoes, zucchini, turnip, or carrot pieces with a touch of salt and olive oil and baking them until crispy.

Other healthier alternatives to processed food items that can be made at home include chia pudding pop-popped popcorn that is air-popped, granola bars as well as fruit leather.

Personally, I enjoy making the dishes I ate at my favorite restaurants at home rather than ordering take-out. Apart from saving money, this also makes it much easier to eat whole foods, by filling with ingredients such as vegetables, fruits as well as seeds, nuts and legumes.

4. Drink more water

The drinks that contain sugar, such as sweet tea, soda as well as fruit juice along with beverages for sports are loaded with calories and sugar but are also lacking in essential nutrients.

The gradual exchange of these drinks for fluids throughout your entire day is an excellent method to reduce the consumption of processed foods and increase your overall quality.

The sparkling or flavor water are both excellent options for plain water if it isn’t something you enjoy drinking. You can also experiment with infusing water with fresh herbs or fruits for a boost of flavor.

5. Try meal prep

The preparation of meals in large quantities every once or twice a week will ensure that you are stocked with healthy food items in your refrigerator even when you’re busy to cook.

It could also make it less appealing to go to the drive-through while you’re driving home, or opt for frozen convenience foods in times of tight time.

For a start, choose some recipes you can cook every week, and schedule a certain time for cooking your meals.

I also like to find a few recipes that have the same ingredients to allow me to rotate through different meals during the week, avoiding repetition.

6. Get more of your vegetables

When you cook meals at home, make sure to include at minimum one serving of veggies to boost your consumption of healthy, natural, and unprocessed food.

It’s as simple like adding some spinach scrambled eggs or sautéing broccoli to make a quick side dish, or adding vegetables or cauliflower into casseroles or soups.

vegetables are extremely nutritious and are a great source of fiber. This keeps you fuller during meals, helping to lessen your appetite as well as curb your cravings.

7. Change up your shopping routine

It’s easier to reduce the consumption of processed foods in the event that you don’t have them in your pantry.

The next time you visit the supermarket, make sure you fill your cart with nutritious foods that are not processed, such as fruits and vegetables, whole grains along with the legumes.

Try sticking to the outer edges of the store , and stay clear of the middle aisles. This is the area where processed snacks and junk food are often discovered.

Make sure you examine the all the labels on your preferred food items when you’re out shopping. When you can avoid foods that contain a lot of trans fat, sodium or sugar added.

8. Try some easy food swaps

There are numerous healthy substitutes for processed goods. Here are some of my personal favorites:

  • Switch your sugary breakfast cereal for oatmeal and fresh fruits.
  • Make popcorn of your own popcorn on the stove instead of microwave popcorn.
  • Create homemade vinaigrette made from vinegar and olive oil to drizzle on salads in place of pre-made dressings.
  • Make a trail mix from seeds, nuts and dried fruit to make an alternative that is healthy to the products sold in stores.
  • Dress the salads with seeds or nuts instead of crutons.

9. Reduce the amount of processed meat you consume.

The processed meats such as bacon sausage, breakfast meat, sausage and hot dogs come with numerous negatives and are even considered carcinogenic according to the International Agency for Research on Cancer

You’ll be happy to know there are many simple ways to cut down in the consumption of processed food.

You can switch these meals out with less processed versions of meats, such as the freshest chickens, salmon, or turkey. You could also substitute the lunch meats in a packaged package with other sandwich fillings such as chicken breast, tuna salad or eggs that have been hard-boiled.

Alternately, you can consume more protein sources from plants, like lentils, beans tofu, tempeh, or tofu.

10. Changes should be made slowly.

There’s no reason to completely eliminate processed food items from your diet at one time.

Making adjustments slowly can be more sustainable and effective over the long term. A few studies suggest that small lifestyle modifications can help to establish long-lasting habits that make decisions which are initially challenging simpler over time.

Each week, test your luck using one or two strategies mentioned above, then gradually introduce more.

Remember that you are able to have fun dining out or eating processed food in moderation, as part of an wholesome, healthy, balanced lifestyle.

It’s the bottom line

Processed food is any food that has been prepared, canned, frozen or packed.

While you are able to eat a variety of processed food items as part of healthy eating however, you must avoid those which are loaded with sugar, sodium, additives, and preservatives.

Take a look at a few strategies outlined in the article below to discover what works best for you be sure to implement changes slowly to achieve the most effective outcomes.