Tips for Healthy Living
Eat your fruits and vegetables
Fruits and vegetables are great for snacking. They can calm your craving for sweet or crunchy, plus they are good for you! Fruits and vegetables are excellent sources of fiber, vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients. They can also help prevent diseases such as cancer. Try to get 5-9 servings daily!
Incorporate activity into your daily routine. Does this mean going to the gym for an hour each day? NO! Keep busy by taking the stairs instead of the elevator, walk instead of taking the bus, get up to change the TV station and do sit-ups and jumping jacks during TV commercials. Being more active throughout the day may help increase your metabolic rate. An increase in metabolic rate will help you burn more calories during normal daily activities.
Fat free does not equal calorie free
While monitoring the amount of fat in the diet is important, it should not be the ultimate focus for weight management or the sole factor in choosing healthy foods. Fat free foods still have calories, and excess calories lead to weight gain. Eat all foods in moderation!
Give your food the attention it deserves
Take time during meals and truly taste every bite you eat. Eat slowly and have meal times be a time of relaxation and enjoyment. Recharge mentally while you refuel physically!
Snack from a plate, not the box
Eating directly out of the box or package can lead to overeating. Take time to put a serving of food on a plate or bowl. Eat that portion. If you are still hungry for more, put more on the plate to eat. Don't just keep grabbing handfuls out of the box!
"Hey up there, can you hear me?"
Let your stomach tell you when you are hungry and full. Eat when you feel hungry, stop when you are satisfied.
Eating to soothe your stress is not the way to go. Try other ways to relax: talk with a friend, take a hot shower, go for a walk, meditate or do some yoga.
Leftovers are good!
You don't have to clean your plate. Save the leftovers for another meal or snack. Pay attention to your body. When you feel satisfied or full, stop eating. If you want to stay at the table and talk after a meal, remove your plate so you are not tempted to keep nibbling.
There is no such thing as “now I’ve blown it completely"
An indulgent treat or a day without exercising is OKAY. It is better to satisfy a craving than to be consumed by the thought of it. Occasional treats are acceptable - remember that all foods can fit into your eating plan. The guideline for aerobic exercise is 3-5 times per week for 20-60 minutes. Taking a few days off throughout the week is okay!
Take things slowly
The best way to lose weight and keep it off is to lose it slowly, by making lifestyle changes. Rapid weight loss may feel good in the short term, but usually that weight comes back - plus some. Focus on healthy living and feeling good versus losing weight!
Adapted from the American Institute for Cancer Research Newsletter.
For additional weight management, nutrition, or exercise questions visit or call Sportwell at the McKinley Health Center, Room 333, at 244-0261.