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Six Healthy Eating Mistakes Even Experts Make (and How They Avoid a Repeat)


Six Healthy Eating Mistakes Even Experts Make (and How They Avoid a Repeat)

Mistakes are chances to learn and to change your habits for the better. Nutrition professionals aren’t immune to busy days, crowded supermarkets, blood sugar crashes, new mom challenges, or the eating-related mistakes that inherently tag along with these situations. But how do they learn from their food follies and prevent similar ones in the future? Read on to find out!

Mistake #1: Going vegetarian without planning
When I was twelve years old I stopped eating meat. I simply subtracted it from my diet.
“Easy enough,” I thought. If my family ate spaghetti with meatballs, I just ate spaghetti. Hamburgers and salad? I just had some salad. What I didn’t realize until I began studying nutrition was that my diet was really lacking in protein, which plays many roles in the body, one of which is helping you feel satiated.

The fix: Now, I pay more attention to what I add to my meals rather than just considering what I’m eliminating. Taking care to include a protein-containing ingredient like beans, nuts, seeds, tofu, or fish (which I later started including in my diet) in every meal helps me feel satisfied and energized throughout the day.

Rachel Meltzer Warren, MS, RDN, author of The Smart Girl’s Guide to Going Vegetarian.

Mistake #2: Waiting until I’m ravenous to eat
As a busy mom, I am sometimes more conscious of my daughter’s needs than my own. For the first year of her life, I’d sometimes go hours without eating and then be so hungry that I just ate whatever was in sight, whether it was healthy or not.

The fix: To combat this problem now, I keep non-perishable, healthy snacks in my purse, car, and stroller so that I can munch on a few nuts or dried fruit when I get hungry away from home. Having a little something in my stomach allows me to make much better eating decisions come mealtime!

Amelia Winslow, nutritionist and founder of Eating Made Easy

Mistake #3: Falling into an eating rut
I fall into a rut when I’m very busy — it’s easy and requires little thought when I go to the store or in my daily routine. I could eat the same foods day in and day out. Although these foods are mostly healthy, I miss out on a whole range of delicious foods and a whole range of nutrients and ultimately it could set me up to overeat when I eat a food that is outside of the routine.

The fix: Despite my busy schedule, I challenge myself to pick up at least one new food/ item at the store a week. It has to be something that I have never tried and I challenge myself to use it in my menu. Having an entirely unique food makes me think (and eat) outside the box and I get a lot more nutrients in than I otherwise would.

Lyssie Lakatos, RDN, CFT, one of The Nutrition Twins, and author of The Nutrition Twins Veggie Cure: Tantalizing Recipes & Expert Advice for Health and Beauty.

Mistake #4 Snacking on sugar
For me, proximity to junk food is the hardest — I don’t have any better level of self-control than the average person! If there are gummy bears, Oreos, or ice cream nearby, I’m probably going to have some. During college I would always have a supply on hand.

The fix: To keep my diet focused on whole, healthy foods, that’s all I buy!  When I’m at a party (or on Halloween!), I’ll have a couple treats, but the resulting sugar headache usually kills any desire to have more in the near future. It’s MUCH easier to not purchase something than it is to not eat it when it’s in my kitchen!

Sarah Waybright, MS, RD, LD, Owner/Founder WhyFoodWorks, LLC (Pinterest: WhyFoodWorks)

Mistake #5 Skipping my afternoon snack
The biggest healthy eating mistake I used to make was not eating an afternoon snack when I was hungry! I felt like I should just wait until dinner to eat, but ignoring my hunger only made me cranky and less able to make healthy choices when I made it home because I was so starved.

The fix: I make sure to listen to my hunger, no matter the time of day. I bring snacks with me everywhere I go so I’m prepared, and it has made a big difference in my energy levels and mood in the afternoon in particular.

Anne Mauney, MPH, RD, a Washington D.C. area dietitian, and author of the blog fANNEtastic food.

Mistake #6: Caving in to late night snacking
I am a natural-born late-night snacker. I know that extra calories tend to creep in when I’m up late working or just relaxing–– not to mention how it can disrupt my sleep! I’ve been a culprit of mindless munching on more than one occasion, leaving me feeling full, tired, and bloated in the morning.

The fix: The way I see it, late-night eating lovers have two options. The first is to identify whether or not you’re actually hungry. Are you eating because you’re bored? Tired? Stressed? Then target your fix toward treating the root cause, such as phoning a friend, making a to-do list, or just going to bed! The second option is for those of us who do like to “bank” some extra calories for later in the day—in which case I prep by choosing low calorie, high-volume snacks. My favorites include: popcorn, frozen grapes/berries, and chopped up crudité with salsa. These satisfy the craving to crunch/munch on something without feeling like I’ve totally blown it. The other key to not overdoing it during late night snacking: portion control—take a serving, enjoy, and then go do something else!

Jaclyn London, MS, RD, a New York City based dietitian. (Twitter:@JLondon1)

What’s your biggest healthy eating mistake and how did YOU fix it?

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A note from our CEO about COVID-19x
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The coronavirus has changed life, as we knew it, forever. Most people will be touched in some way by the pandemic either physically, emotionally or financially. We’ve all heard heart-breaking stories from around the world about lives that have been lost and severe financial hardships caused by the sudden shutdown of so many businesses.

On behalf of all our team members around the globe, we extend our deepest sympathies to all that are struggling through personal challenges, whatever they may be, and we offer our sincerest gratitude to all the heroes who are helping those in need.

We’d also like to add how important it is for everyone to continue to do their part to slow the spread. Physical distancing is critical, and we must all take this seriously. We use the word “physical” because staying away from people in a physical way does not mean we should be neglecting the importance of social interactions, compassion and patience.

We are one of the largest providers of shelf-stable seafood and it is our honor and our responsibility to do our part, in every way we can, to help to keep people fed with affordable, nutritious protein. To that end, we’re continuing to run our factories in the US and Canada while our partners around the world continue to provide supply.

We take great pride in being a “people-first” company, so our decision to continue operations is done with utmost concern for the people making it possible. We’ve enhanced our safety measures to meet or exceed CDC guidelines and we have increased wages in our factories to assist employees dealing with the incremental costs of working and new, unexpected demands on their households.

We also take great pride in producing healthy, nutritious and safe products for our customers. Please know the manufacturing practices we follow year-round protect our both employees and the products they produce. Our facilities have very few people-to-product interactions, all products are sterilized in a high temperature oven and then packaged in highly automated production lines.

Beyond Bumble Bee, we’re continually looking for ways to extend our “people first” approach to make a meaningful impact. With so many people in need, we know this effort is more important than ever. We’re starting by donating more than $1 million in product to food banks in both the US and in Canada. And we will be looking for more opportunities to make a positive difference in the days to come.

Finally, I want to thank you, our loyal and new customers, for your support. We hope you find the recipes on our website helpful and easy to prepare. I also want to send a sincere thank you to our Bumble Bee Team and our valued supply partners around the world for their tireless efforts, particularly those working in sales, manufacturing, distribution and all our support roles, ensuring we can keep store and pantry shelves stocked.

Please continue to do your part to keep yourselves and your families safe during this truly unprecedented time.

With Gratitude,
CEO, Bumble Bee Seafoods