The African Diet: 5 Essential Eating Tips To Jumpstart A Healthier Lifestyle

African American man grocery shoppingBeginning a healthy living lifestyle can sometimes be daunting. From the fear of unknown to fear of failure. This is why it’s important to take things slowly when starting a lifestyle change in order to make the changes stick for the long term. Simple modification to current lifestyles choices as well as finding healthier alternatives for known favorites will lead to longer term success.

In several conversations, I have heard “It is impossible to eat healthy on an African diet” and I am frankly surprised that people still believe this. The African diet is inherently healthy and often contains little to no processed foods. Most traditional dishes are often very well-balanced and incorporate significant amounts of vegetables and nutrients. In addition to being healthy, African meals are delicious and have a wide flavor profile.

Based on my experience with weight loss, here are 5 essential tips to make eating healthy a little easier.

Shopping + Pantry

Making the decision to stick to a healthy diet requires lots of commitment. You can make the journey easier for yourself by not having temptation around. Having unhealthy food/junk around while trying to eat healthy can be highly counterproductive.

Make the conscious effort to have healthy meals and snacks, fruits and veggies available at your disposal so are you are not tempted to sabotage your diet.

Read labels. Try as much as possible to avoid food products with a long list of ingredients, especially if you are unable to pronounce the ingredients

Meal Composition

Aim for a balanced whole foods diet that contains 35% protein, 45% carbohydrate and 20% healthy fat.

Whole wheat variety of complex carbs are your friends as they are typically high satiety foods and will help curb your appetite and keep you full long.

Meal Prep

Planning is highly essential for success in every endeavor. This is no different when it comes to a healthy diet.

Spending a few hours a week prepping and packing your meals can go a long way to ensure you stay on track.