How to Eat Right Without Counting Calories

Eating healthy is a worthy goal in and of itself, not just a weight loss tool. But if you’ve ever tried to change your eating habits, you probably know what a mess of misinformation online food culture is.

There seem to be only a few things that everyone agrees on when it comes to nutrition , so regardless of your health goals, here are science-backed healthy eating tips that don’t require you to count calories.

Eat lean protein

I like to think of protein as a mixture of three macronutrients (fats, carbohydrates, and protein). They are the building blocks of your muscles, and high protein foods tend to bring the most satiety. Think meat, fish, poultry, eggs, legumes (such as black beans and chickpeas), and soy products (such as tofu or tempeh). Our protein guide will tell you how much you need depending on your health goals, from losing weight to building muscle and strengthening nails and hair.

Focus on your fiber

Fiber improves satiety and is known to normalize stool. If you find it difficult to fit a bag of chips, replacing less nutritious snacks with high fiber foods can help you feel full naturally. Examples include whole grains, legumes, and most fruits and vegetables. Speaking of …

Eat more vegetables

This is another one of those rare moments where they come together. Vegetables are the main source of important nutrients and vitamins to help your entire body function. It’s really that simple. Throw yourself a salad and start laughing blissfully. Try to expand your flavor with more types of vegetables, especially in the seasons .

Choose good fats

The reputation for fat in your diet has come a long way, but that doesn’t make it any less confusing. We’ve covered the different types of fats and their benefits . To start incorporating healthy fats into your diet, look for foods like avocados, nuts, eggs, and oily fish like salmon.

Reduce your sugar intake

We’ve covered practical and effective tips for phasing out sugar from your diet , as well as many opinions on how your body processes sugar and causes headaches (such as the so-called sugar glitch). But what you can do is focus your sugar sources on apples, berries, and other fruits that at least contain fiber and vitamins to help all of your systems work in top shape.

You don’t have to sacrifice taste.

Despite decades of harmful rhetoric – partly due to old children’s television – healthy food really tastes good. If you’re skeptical, here are some of the best ways to improve the taste of healthy foods . Plus, with fall coming, there’s no better time to improve your veggie game by roasting it to delicious perfection . You also don’t need to become a chef – there are plenty of cheap and lazy ways to eat healthy foods .

Better sleep

The most overlooked healthy eating tips have nothing to do with food. Research shows that getting less than seven hours of regular sleep can lead to hard-to-control hunger and cravings. Here’s how to get the most out of your sleep .

Start with your thinking

Healthy eating should be about self-healing (# self-care), not self-punishment. To practice mindfulness, consider reading about intuitive eating . Plus, there are specific tips to help you simplify your healthy eating experience, such as redesigning your refrigerator to make it ready to eat. Making sure you have healthy foods close at hand can help you make less-than-ideal decisions when you’re hungry.

At the same time, remember to be patient with yourself. No diet is perfect, and neither is anyone.

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