7 eating habits that are destroying your body

Your eating habits can have a significant impact on your body. In some cases, your diet can have a positive impact on your health, such as when you eat fiber to support digestive regularity and enjoy omega-3-rich fish for its cardiovascular benefits. However, the foods and beverages you choose to consume can also have negative effects on your body. When choosing the items that make up your regular diet, you probably consider flavor, texture, and ease of preparation, but you also need to consider how it may affect your overall health. And unfortunately, certain eating habits can destroy your body without you even realizing it.

No diet is perfect, and it is reasonable to occasionally eat foods that are not traditionally considered healthy. These items can include candies, desserts, fried foods, sugary drinks, and snacks that provide calories with little nutritional benefit. These types of foods can become more of a problem when they regularly make up a large part of your diet and aren’t paired with nutrient-dense foods. Additionally, when you eat and how much you eat can also have a negative impact on your body.

When choosing foods to support your body, focus on a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, minimally processed whole grains, lean proteins and vegetable fats. To allow your eating habits to have a positive impact on your body, also practice portion control, try not to lie down immediately after eating, and ensure that each meal and snack contains more than one macronutrient.

If the majority of your food intake is not made up of these types of foods and your habits are not aligned with these suggestions, chances are you are not supporting your body to the best of your abilities. In fact, your food choices and eating habits could be destroying your body. Read on to learn more, and for more healthy eating tips, check out What’s the Best Oil for Cooking?

You eat too much sugar

sweet foods

First, let’s differentiate the types of sugar. The sugar naturally present in fruits and dairy products is not in question here. However, added sugar incorporated into foods and drinks to enhance the sweetness could harm your body.

Research indicates that added sugar, and especially sugary drinks like soda and juice, are linked to weight gain and a higher risk of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and some forms of cancer. The American Heart Association recommends that men consume less than 36 grams of sugar per day, while women should aim for less than 25 grams.

If you consume more than this recommendation, you can replace the sugar with alternatives like stevia and reduce your portions of sugary foods.

RELATED: 11 Worst Snacks For Your Gut Health, Dietitians Say

You eat too much all of a sudden

If you’ve ever had indigestion, gas, or bloating after a meal, it may be because you ate too much food at once. These symptoms can also be due to specific foods you have eaten, but don’t underestimate the importance of portion control on digestive symptoms.

According to research, both upper and lower gastrointestinal symptoms could result from eating too much food, too quickly. Additionally, eating large portions of food at once could promote excessive calorie intake which could lead to obesity, which further harms your body. To avoid these complications, try to take at least 15 to 20 minutes to eat a meal. Slowing down your eating pace gives your digestive system time to send satiety signals to your brain before you get uncomfortably stuffed.

you eat too late

If you eat too close to bedtime, you could damage your body. Research suggests that time-restricted eating, which means you only eat food at specific times, like 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., can have health benefits.

Although research on weight gain linked to eating too late is inconclusive, we do know that eating dinner earlier may reduce reflux symptoms. Additionally, nighttime eating seems to be associated with binge eating, another habit that could harm your body. As a general rule, try not to eat within two hours of going to bed. If you feel hungry during this window or overnight, you may need to assess your eating habits during the day to ensure that you are eating enough and getting a healthy balance of nutrients to keep you satisfied throughout the day and of the night.

You are not eating enough fiber

high fiber foods

If you’re skipping on whole grains, legumes, fruits, and vegetables, you may not be getting enough fiber. This nutrient is found only in plant-based foods and has a long list of benefits. Fiber “feeds” healthy bacteria in your gut and can help with weight loss and lower blood cholesterol.

These mention just a few of the fiber benefits, and if you don’t eat enough, you could have more digestive issues, have weight management issues, and have higher blood cholesterol. To increase your fiber intake, incorporate fruits or vegetables into every meal and snack, replace your processed grains with whole grains, and add more nuts and seeds to your meal plan.

RELATED: 15 High-Fiber Breakfasts That Will Fill You Up

You eat too much animal fat

Vegetable fats, like those found in nuts, seeds, and oil, actually have many health benefits. On the other hand, the fat you may be consuming from animal sources could destroy your body if consumed in excess. Saturated fats are a type most commonly found in animal foods like red meat, dairy products, and eggs, and they can negatively impact your cardiovascular system.

A study found that replacing dietary saturated fat with polyunsaturated fat can reduce your risk of heart disease. To reduce saturated fat in your diet, choose lean cuts of meat and cut visible fat when possible. You can also choose low-fat dairy products and increase your fish intake to benefit your heart more.

Your food and drink choices are too acidic

Your dental health may be at risk depending on your food and drink choices. Foods that are too acidic, like sodas and coffee, can contribute to poor dental health and increase dental erosion. This is true even for diet sodas, but sodas and coffee containing sugar are particularly harmful to teeth, as they can also increase the risk of cavities.

Even sour fruits and dried fruits can create an acidic environment in your mouth, leading to mouth problems. To reduce your risk, avoid eating and drinking these acidic foods throughout the day and try to brush your teeth soon after consuming them.

You don’t combine nutrients

meal on plate

If you only have a bowl of cereal for breakfast, you are not eating an ideal balance of nutrients. A balanced meal is a meal that includes protein, carbohydrates, fats, and produce. While a bowl of cereal isn’t bad on its own, it probably doesn’t contain much protein or fat and isn’t a source of produce. While carbs are the fastest digesting macronutrients, proteins and fats take longer to digest, leading to higher satiety. This increase in satiety can help control appetite, which can lead to more appropriate caloric intake to support a healthy weight.

Additionally, balanced meals are more likely to contain a wider variety of essential nutrients, including vitamins and minerals, which support many bodily systems. To make the cereal meal more balanced, add a serving of chopped nuts to incorporate fat and protein, top with berries for produce, and drink the cereal milk at the end for another protein boost.

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