You don't need British chef Jamie Oliver to help you clean up your act; you can stage your own personal food revolution by making these healthy changes.
- TIP: If it's bigger than your hand, it's probably too much.
- Step 1: Grow some of your own food, even if it's just a couple of plants or herbs in containers. Having fresh ingredients at your fingertips is the best way to wean yourself off processed and packaged foods.
- FACT: Obesity accounts for nearly 10 percent of U.S. health-care spending.
- Step 2: Learn what constitutes a serving size so you can watch your portions. Never order the largest of anything, whether it's a beverage or a burger.
- Step 3: Plan meals around the fruits and vegetables that are in season, and try to buy them from local farmers: it's healthier, tastier, usually cheaper, and has less of an impact on the environment. Limit meat consumption to 2 or 3 times a week.
- Step 4: Stock your cupboards with staples so you'll always have the building blocks of a healthy, home-cooked meal.
- TIP: Your staples should include frozen vegetables and canned fish, beans, and tomatoes -- nutrition-wise, they're all good stand-ins for fresh.
- Step 5: Cook most of your meals from scratch; it's the best way to control what you're eating. If you have children, teach them how to prepare fresh ingredients.