(BPT) – It’s a story we all know too well. New Year’s rolls around and, feeling the effects of holiday overindulgence and inspired by the promise of a fresh start, we rattle off a handful of “get healthy” resolutions for the upcoming year. “This year, I’ll stay away from sweets — period.” “I’ll stop snacking between meals.” “I’ll finally run that marathon, no excuses.”
The problem is, while these “New Year, New Me” goals are undoubtedly admirable, they’re often unrealistic. We start off full steam ahead in January, but start feeling burnt by the time February rolls around, and by March, we’re back to our old, unhealthy habits.
The key to long-term success is setting obtainable, sustainable goals that easily fit into your current routine. Here are wholesome eating tips and recipe ideas that prove you don’t need to take extreme measures to lead a healthy lifestyle. All you need is an appetite.
1. Control snacking with bite-sized portions
Nibbling between meals is not bad for you. In fact, it can help manage hunger and reduce overeating at mealtime. The key is to consume satiating, good-for-you snacks in moderate portions. These Mini Cheese Quiches with Corn & Chives
make the job easy: They’re filled with veggies, packed with protein and sized appropriately.
2. Rethink the role of veggies
Yes, you CAN have vegetables for breakfast, and yes you CAN enjoy it. Starting your morning with a wholesome meal sets the tone for a healthy day ahead. This recipe for Scrambled Eggs with Peppers & Peas
delivers two servings of veggies and is packed with protein, which helps fight pre-lunch hunger.
3. Lighten up old favorites
Cleaning up your diet doesn’t mean you must bid adieu to beloved comfort foods. Case and point: This recipe for Turkey Bolognese with Peas and Carrots
, which offers a nutritious take on a traditional sloppy joe. Lean turkey stands in for ground beef, and veggies add bonus nutrients.
4. Dress up salads
Salads needn’t be your nemesis. Make your bowl of leafy greens more palatable by adding a tasty topping (think: dried or fresh fruits, nuts or seeds). Need inspiration? Try this simple recipe for Peas, Carrots & Candied Walnut Salad
. Bibb lettuce and diced peas and carrots are jazzed up with a sprinkling of goat cheese and cinnamon-flavored nuts.
5. Prioritize family mealtime
Kick off your healthier lifestyle this year by getting your family back to the table. Since you’re in charge of the menu when dining at home, it’s easier to keep calories, fat and sodium levels in check. Plus, regular family dinners have been linked to better academic performance, higher self-esteem and lower rates of depression.