Note: Low-fat products are not always suitable for children and the elderly. Full fat milk is necessary for babies – milk is the main source of the protein and vitamins they need.
Reduce sugar intake, halve the number of times you eat confectionary, cakes and biscuits. Have fresh fruit for puddings. Use diet and low-calorie drinks. Choose soft drinks sweetened with artificial sweeteners and fruits canned in natural juice or water rather than syrup. Cut down on sugar in tea and coffee, or change to artificial sweeteners.
Gradually cut out adding salt to food before you eat it. Use less in cooking or use herbs, spices and pepper to give that extra flavour. Check food labels for the sodium content of prepared foods and choose those with the lowest amount of salt.
Eat more fibre by trying starchy foods at each meal, for example include more porridge, Weetabix, wholemeal bread, pulses, brown rice, pasta, potatoes (especially jacket potatoes), green vegetables and fruit. Check your breakfast cereal to make sure it’s high in NSP (fibre) but not too high in sodium and sugar.
Keep a good watch on your alcohol intake, drink plenty of unsweetened drinks and lots of water.
Change is not easy. It requires thought and effort, but it’s surprising how quickly some changes can be adopted and become habits. Others take a bit more time. If you really want to eat more healthily, concentrate on one aspect of food at a time, then move onto the next while continuing the first change.