Weight loss is a common goal for many people, and the journey to reach that goal usually results in changing your diet. While adjusting your diet could help you get the figure you want, it has additional benefits that may surprise you. Consider these other area of improvement that you’ll see through healthier eating.
A healthy weight and heart go hand in hand. Obesity is a factor in heart disease and diabetes, but weight alone is not enough to determine the outcome of your risk. Thin people can also be at risk if they’re not eating properly. What’s on the inside is actually a greater indicator of your health than how you look on the outside. The best diet for a healthy heart is one that’s rich in vegetables, fresh fruit, lean protein, omega-3 fatty acids (from fish, nuts, seeds), whole grains, and healthy fats. The Mediterranean Diet falls right into this category.
Eating better helps you sleep better because your body functions optimally during the night when you eat right. Fatty, greasy, and spicy foods near bedtime can actually disrupt your sleep, as will alcohol and caffeine. Despite being good for you in many other ways, protein at night isn’t the best idea because it can be difficult to digest. The best food for a good sleep is a complex carbohydrate, such as oatmeal or whole grain bread. When eaten in moderation, complex carbohydrates also provide fiber for digestive regularity, glucose for energy and brain functioning, and healthy weight maintenance.
Because food goes straight to your gut, what you put in it does affect how the gut operates. However, diet alone might not suffice in healing your gut. Probiotics can provide the good bacteria that your GI tract needs to heal in other ways. Aside from tackling bloating and gas, improving your gut health with probiotics can lead to a better immune system and mental health benefits, such as reduced stress and depression and improved memory.
A nutrient-rich diet shows everywhere on you: your figure, energy levels, brain performance, and complexion. When you heal from the inside, your body’s biggest organ — your skin — also reaps the benefits. Diet isn’t a cure for real skin conditions, but people who are sensitive or allergic to certain ingredients might experience relief from cutting out inflammatory foods.
If you’re trying to lose weight, then you might already be on an exercise program too. When you combine the two, your weight loss efforts are maximized, but eating better also improves your fitness efforts. Eating healthy carbohydrates before a workout increases your energy and performance capacity, and eating protein after the workout helps build and repair muscle.
Ever notice that your mood and mental clarity improves after you eat a healthy meal? That’s because there’s a correlation between your diet and mental health. Omega-3s have a positive impact on brain development and functioning because of its anti-inflammatory effects, and junk food has been linked to ADHD in children. The World Journal of Psychology has found that 12 nutrients can serve as natural mood boosters for those who suffer from depression. Foods that include these nutrients are nuts, leafy greens, salmon, dark chocolate, bananas, sweet potatoes, turkey, oysters, and fermented foods (which, coincidentally, also contain probiotics). These foods are good for your physical health as well, so the benefits are twofold.
There’s more to healthy eating than simply losing weight. Although many of us begin our health journeys in order to drop the pounds, the benefits that come with this lifestyle are numerous and invaluable. By trimming your waistline, you can also make strides toward keeping your body, brain, and heart functioning at their best for years to come.
Photo Credit: Pixabay
Research: Success MKT