5 Creeping Reasons for Your Bad Eating Habits and What to do About Them.

You’re probably here to find a way to eat healthier, congrats! A great way to solve a problem is to find out what is causing it. That desire is the first great step. The hardest part is running with it. A large set of studies from Belgium to Bangladesh have looked at our eating habits and have provided some suggestions to improving them. They discovered some obvious and not-so-obvious factors that influence our diets (good and bad). So, in short, let’s find out what they uncovered and how we may improve our diets.

Here are 5 important factors that you may have been subconsciously and negatively influencing your diet and how to remedy them.

  1. A busy schedule
    1. It may seem obvious but working two jobs or juggling between work and school forces people to opt for quick food choices that are sometimes unhealthy and we forget to take care of our bodies. We then build potentially unwanted habits that are hard to get rid of even when we do find time to cook.
    2. This one is probably the hardest to change because life is just hard sometimes. It requires good time management which is hard but very possible! A weekly food prep is a great way to overcome a busy schedule and still eat healthy. The Dailyburn has a few great tips on Alphatox teas and various shakes to help with appetite management.
  2. Accessibility (What’s nearby and available)
    1. When considering something to eat and there’s a fast food joint 10 steps from your workplace versus a more healthier option 10 blocks down you may be more likely to choose the closer option. It is simply good to be aware of this. Trying to be more healthy definitely takes effort but it is rewarding both in the medium and long term.
  3. Peer Pressure
    1. If your at work, or at Uni, and everyone around you likes to get food from a nearby restaurant you may be less likely to bring food from home or eat at home so being aware of this will allow you to better adjust to the social situation.
    2. Your friends aren’t bad for this, it just may not be financially viable or healthy for you personally. Self-control and self-inflection are necessary and it is important to think about what is best for yourself and your goals.
  4. Education (formal and in-formal)
    1. What you accustom and learn in your younger years through your family has a great affect on your eating habits later. For example, if as a kid your parents bought fast food a lot or just foods that were high in fat and sugar you will probably continue the habit of eating poorly when you go to college or live independently. These methods may be deeply ingrained. However, just because some eating habits may have come from your family it doesn’t mean they’re permanent. It just means you have to be more vigilant and work to overcome them, making you a much stronger person. It is similar to have a family history of high blood sugar. It doesn’t mean you will 100% get it, just that you need to be more careful.
    2. Also, a formal health education/ class has been shown to improve student’s dietary habits so keep educating yourself on these subjects whether at home or school. It will help a lot!
  5. Social Support
    1. In a way, this is like good peer pressure. If you have a spouse who eats healthy or live with someone who cooks healthier food you are much more likely to eat healthy as well. Also having close friends or family can help cope with stressful situations than may otherwise lead to overeating, poor eating, or drinking too much.

They’re are many other main reasons for poor eating habits like general low income, stress, food tastes, self-discipline, but they were too evident. The most important part of this piece is your self-reflection in figuring out what causes your eating habits and how you can change them if you wish. I hope this helps! :)