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5 Ways to Avoid Sabotaging Healthy Heart Eating

In honor of National Heart Month, we at Paul S. DeMarco, DPM want to focus on eating to maintain an appropriate weight—it’s essential for the health of your heart and your feet. Patients who are overweight are prone to many harmful foot conditions. While we all want to eat healthy, there are many temptations to throw us off track.

Here are 5 of the most common excuses we make for unhealthy food choices and how to combat them:

  1. “I’m stressed or feeling down.” Enter comfort food. Unfortunately those foods we usually choose to help us feel better aren’t the best for us. Mac and cheese and chocolate are okay in moderation but shouldn’t be the tool you reach for to deal with tough situations. Instead, try to get outside for a quick walk or call a friend. Keep some healthy substitutes on hand if you still feel the need to eat.
  2. “I don’t have time to make a salad.” It may be a few seconds quicker to grab a pre-packaged meal or even pile high ingredients on a sandwich but it’s all about habit. Use pre-packaged greens to save time on washing and chopping. Mix canned or frozen fruits that are pre-cut. Make a larger portion of a healthy food and keep it in the fridge so that it can be your fast (and healthy) go to.
  3. “It’s date night, Christmas, celebrate my raise, fill in the blank night.” Hopefully your life is filled with good moments to celebrate but that doesn’t mean you have to throw healthy eating out the window. Look for preparations of your favorite foods that are heart smart: choose the grilled shrimp kabobs over the deep fried, have an extra vegetable instead of potato with your steak. If you do indulge, plan some extra physical activity to balance out your calorie intake.
  4. “My boss brought donuts to the office.” Just because the food is free doesn’t mean that it doesn’t get added to your calorie budget. It’s okay to say no. You can be social with a cup of coffee or seltzer and still take part in the camaraderie without the food. If the temptation is too great, keep some of your own healthy snacks in your desk.
  5. “I already blew it with the candy bar. Might as well start again tomorrow.” Focus on the next food you eat, not the last. Take it one snack at time, one meal at a time. Every healthy choice puts you on the path to better eating habits that will make it easier to maintain a healthy weight.

Our podiatrist, Dr. Paul S. DeMarco wants patients to be proactive about their health. If you have questions about your heart health and your feet, contact our Somers Point office by calling: (609) 927-4894.