Have you made a resolution to improve your eating or physical activity habits this year? Stop tracking your progress by the number on the scale, and instead, focus on making positive behavior changes that will benefit your overall health. Making one small change at a time (like replacing a lunch-time soda with a glass of milk or water) is much easier than trying to change everything about your eating style all at once. Setting realistic goals related to nutrition and activity can make resolutions more rewarding, which will encourage you to stick with it, and make lasting changes.
Here are some suggestions for making small changes to your nutrition or physical activity plan in the new year:
- Start the day with a balanced breakfast to give yourself more energy and prevent over eating later in the day.
- Eat small, frequent meals and snacks every 3-4 hours throughout the day in order to keep your metabolism and energy levels up.
- Drink more decaffeinated beverages to boost hydration.
- Aim for 5 servings of vegetables and fruits per day.
- Bring along nutrient dense snacks (yogurt, dried fruit, granola bars, baby carrots) to have ready if you get hungry between meals.
- Try for 30 minutes of enjoyable activity daily, which can be done in easy, small increments.
- If you have not been active for some time, start at a comfortable level and increase your amount of activity slowly as you go along.
- Pick physical activities that you like and that fit into your life. Find the time that works best for you to be active, and find time to be active with friends and family to increase the sense of enjoyment and support.