Healthy eating and healthy living are rising trends for many these days. People may have different reasons for pursuing a healthy life, but a common thread is that changing our dietary habits and choices can be better and more beneficial for our minds and bodies.
As such, market research has found that the weight loss industry is expected to be worth $295.3 billion by 2027, a gradual growth associated with an increase in the incidences of health problems such as diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. The bigger the threat of health problems, the more motivated we become to pursue good health. Today, we're discussing how organizing your pantry is one way you can achieve healthy eating.
Why is it essential to organize your pantry?
Clean and healthy eating is all about making choices. A cluttered pantry can look well-stocked at first, but it offers you too many choices at a time and increases the likelihood of you overlooking healthier options in favor of junk foods. If this has happened in the past, then you might have to embark on a weight loss program so that you start to prioritize more nutritious foods. This doesn't necessarily mean avoiding your favorite treats forever; nutritionists and behavioral scientists agree that restrictive diets rarely work long-term. Rather, a combination of consistent healthy habits such as getting adequate sleep and staying physically active on top of eating healthy is more likely to get you where you need to be.
Organizing your pantry may seem like a trivial chore at first, but you'll find it serves a functional purpose as much as it does an aesthetic purpose. A neat pantry can be the pillar of support you need to make little but significant behavioral changes regarding what you eat and when. Below are some tips for organizing your pantry:
Make use of a breakfast station
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, setting the tone for your following meals in the next few hours. However, breakfast can also be disorganized as everyone rushes to get something to eat before going to school or work. Part of our post on back-to-school organizational hacks is the importance of breakfast stations in making breakfast time quick and easy for everyone involved. Small changes such as keeping yogurts and juices at the bottom of the fridge or breakfast cart will make them easier to access. Clear canisters for cereals and having bowls nearby make breakfast feel like a self- serve area for hotel breakfasts. As much as this is about making healthy food options accessible to people in the house, it's also about making eating fun and non-stressful.
Keep the healthy food where you can see them
Sometimes, it's not enough to make good food accessible and easy to reach. Cognitively, we tend to eat whatever is closest to us or whatever we come across first in the pantry or kitchen. In psychology, this is known as availability bias, which is a normal human tendency to evaluate situations and make decisions based on information that comes readily to mind. In the case of a pantry, this information is the food that you immediately or easily see. The term comes with a negative connotation in other fields, as relying on availability bias could lead to bad financial investments, for example. But that doesn't mean we can't use our human instinct to rely on readily available information (or food!) and use it to our advantage. When reorganizing, it would be wise to keep the healthier stuff where everyone can see them and hide the junk foods or make them harder to find — out of sight, out of mind. We make food decisions based on what's available, and seeing that healthy foods are more accessible is a good first step to eating healthy.