Healthy Eating

7 Small Eating Tweaks That Offer Big Results

Consistency is key!

By: Lexy Parsons

When we think of improving upon our diet, it’s a common belief that drastic measures are necessary for change. However, this is simply not true! In fact, uprooting your entire lifestyle with extreme changes — like cutting out entire food groups, restricting calories, or approaching your plate with an all-or-nothing mindset — can often backfire. Think about all the times you’ve done this (don’t feel bad, we’ve all been there) and how it worked for you in the past. Probably not very sustainable (or healthy), right? Unfortunately, this restrictive mentality is especially common when it comes to our diet. But, what if we told you that simple healthy eating tweaks could get you the results you want (and then some) without drastically changing your diet or day-to-day life? It’s true! Though minor, these habits are ultra-powerful — not to mention, sustainable, and able to support your long-term goals. 

Ahead, small but mighty eating hacks that may not seem significant, but will make a world of difference! 

RELATED: Honoring Your Body Through Nourishment Not Restriction 

7 Small But Mighty Healthy Eating Tweaks

#1 Start Your Morning With a Cup of Water Before Coffee 

If coffee is the motivating force that powers your morning, by all means, incorporate this caffeinated beverage into your morning routine. However, rather than jump to the java, consider starting with a large glass of water while you’re brewing up your blend.

While it may seem insignificant, this minor eating tweak can offer huge benefits by boosting your body’s hydration stores. Your last sip of water was likely 8-12 hours prior to bed, so after a restful night’s sleep, it’s normal to wake up in a mild state of dehydration

Therefore, replenishing your hydration stores first thing in the morning can make a big impact on your health, especially considering coffee is a diuretic – meaning, it dehydrates you even more! Starting your day off with water not only helps combat this, but it can also help to kickstart your metabolism, improve your digestion, and boost your energy, just to name a few benefits! 

So remember: first water, then coffee!

RELATED: 8 Ways to Boost Your Coffee (Including Superfoods For All Your Needs)

#2 Fuel Your Morning Meal with Protein VS. Carbs

Have you ever had a big, filling breakfast made of foods like pancakes, oats, or banana, only to find yourself hungry a few hours later? While these foods can certainly be healthy, they are also carb-heavy when consumed alone (and thus, may not keep you feeling full for long). You may feel an initial burst of energy, but if you’re not balancing your plate with the proper macronutrients, you may start to experience hunger pangs and even feelings of fatigue.

A simple healthy eating tweak that can solve this problem (without depriving you of your favorite breakfast foods) is to enjoy your meal with an added source of protein! A protein-rich breakfast can balance out your plate of carbs, helping to keep your blood sugar stable, increase satiety (and reduce mid-morning hanger), and support weight loss by reducing cravings. And with so many healthy protein sources to choose from, you can still enjoy those not-so-nutritious breakfast options (like cereal or pancakes) in a healthier way.

Here are some ways to balance your breakfast plate with protein:

  • Enjoy your bagel with a side of eggs
  • Mix in a scoop of protein powder to your oats or pancakes
  • Dip your banana in some protein-rich peanut butter
  • Stir a serving of nut butter into your bowl of oatmeal or top it off with protein-rich seeds like chia, pumpkin, or hemp

RELATED: 10 Ways to Add More Plant-Based Protein to Breakfast

#3 Incorporate Protein & Healthy Fats Into Your Snacks

Just like your breakfast, it’s important to maintain macronutrient balance in your snacks! A healthy snack should have all three macronutrients: healthy carbs, fats, and protein. Protein and fat are two nutrients that will help prevent that afternoon crash, keeping you nourished with a steady stream of energy. And, don’t forget to make it fiber-rich! In addition to keeping you full and satiated, fiber is key for digestion. 

See — small but mighty healthy eating tweaks!

Here are some nourishing snack combos to try: 

  • Avocado toast made with a slice of whole-grain or Ezekiel toast, topped with a hard-boiled egg and sprinkle of hemp seeds. 
  • A protein yogurt parfait full of unsweetened Greek yogurt (or a dairy-free Greek-style alternative like Kite Hill), fiber-rich berries, and a handful of nuts, cacao nibs, or coconut for healthy fats. 
  • Turkey roll-ups made with tahini-rich hummus or mashed avocado for healthy fats, and a handful of fiber-rich veggies like salad greens or sprouts. 
  • A protein-rich smoothie made with banana, spinach, almond butter, chia seeds, and unsweetened almond milk.

Another hack that can help you stay on track? Planning (and prepping) your snacks ahead of time so you’re not tempted by your hunger cravings! 

#4 Add a Superfood to At Least One Meal Per Day

Superfoods are nutrient-dense superheroes — they are strong, powerful, and effective! And a small spoonful or handful can go a long way. 

For whole food superfoods, try incorporating foods like dark leafy greens, berries, turmeric, and ginger. Their high antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties can help boost energy, support weight loss, and optimize overall health.

Some other additions worth adding?

#5 Amp up your Fiber Intake by Enjoying a Daily Fiber-Rich Shake

If you’re looking for simple healthy eating tweaks to add to your routine, making a daily fiber-rich shake is a no-brainer. It’s one of the easiest ways to add in just about any nutrient for whatever you’re lacking. Not getting enough protein? Mix in a scoop of protein powder or spoonful of nut butter. Lacking some greens in your diet? Toss in a handful of spinach (trust us, you won’t taste it). Deficient in some vitamins or minerals? Add a spoonful of superfoods

And, of course, your daily shake is one of the best ways to up your fiber intake — a nutrient we clearly need more of. According to research, 95% of Americans are fiber deficient! In fact, the average American consumes just half of the recommended amount per day. 

Fiber benefits digestion, balances blood sugar, aids weight loss, and acts as a nourishing prebiotic to feed the good bacteria in our gut. It’s safe to say, fiber is important! Luckily, we’re making it easy to incorporate this nutrient into your diet. Try adding these fiber-rich foods into your smoothie, and you’ll be well on your way to achieving your daily fiber needs.

  • Chia seeds: 2 tbsp = 10 grams of fiber 
  • Raspberries: 1 cup = 8 grams of fiber 
  • Almonds: 2 oz. = 6 grams of fiber 
  • Avocado: ½ avocado = 5 grams of fiber
  • Oats: 1 cup = 4 grams of fiber

RELATED: 95% of People Don’t Get Enough of This Nutrient 

#6 Swap Sugary Desserts for Healthy Substitutes   

We’re all for treating yourself every now and then, but with so many food substitutes on the market, it’s easy to swap unhealthy sugary desserts for nourishing foods (that taste equally as good as they make you feel)! 

Here are some healthy swaps for whatever desserts you’re craving:

  • Swap Ice Cream for Banana Nice Cream: Enjoy this guilt-free treat sweetened 100% naturally with frozen bananas. You can even make a protein version! Try these seven delicious flavors
  • Swap Sugary Popsicles For a Healthy Homemade Version: Make your own by freezing blended coconut water and fruit!
  • Swap Sugar-filled Cookies For Homemade Energy Balls: Simply blend dates, nuts, oats, and your favorite add-ins in a food processor, roll into balls, and store in the fridge! 
  • Swap Pudding For Chia Pudding: Chia pudding is loaded with fiber to keep you feeling full and tastes just as delicious as its sugary-filled alternative.

RELATED: The 9 Healthiest Sweeteners That Are Better Than Refined Sugar

#7 Avoid Skipping Meals: Bring Leftovers for Lunch

We’ve all had those days where time is nowhere to be found (and seemingly, neither are healthy meal options). When your stomach is growling for an afternoon bite, the last thing you want to do is skip lunch all together (in an effort to avoid splurging on not-so-healthy meal choices). Skipping meals can make you tired, irritable and lead to unhealthy binging behaviors later in the day.

Luckily, our healthy eating tweaks can help you plan ahead and prevent hunger pains! If you don’t have time to prepare meals for the week, simply make a larger-sized dinner. Throw last night’s leftovers in a Tupperware, and out the door you go! No clean-up, no cooking, no afternoon hanger.

RELATED: 6 Mediterranean-Style One-Pan Dinners That Will Save You Time & Stress

Small, Consistent Changes Make for Big Results

As you can see, these healthy eating tweaks are simple — you may already be incorporating some of them into your daily routine (without even realizing it)! The key is consistency. When we are consistent with our actions, small changes can add up to long-lasting results, benefiting everything from weight loss to overall health!