Five Diet and Lifestyle Tips: Small Changes You Can Make Now
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Molly Sweeney, MS, RDN, LDN, CDE, is a registered dietitian at LVPG Surgery-Health and Wellness Center in Hazle Township, Pa.
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For many, the New Year will bring about new changes – why not make some nutritious changes that will help you feel better and look better too? As a registered dietitian, I have worked with hundreds of people who want to lose weight. The way to achieve that is to start with small changes that, over the course of the year, become healthier eating habits that can help you lose weight.
Here are my top 5 healthy lifestyle tips.
- Eat breakfast: Eating first thing in the morning will get your metabolism started. Also, vary your breakfast options: oatmeal, toast with eggs, toast with peanut butter, an omelet or even cereal – the possibilities are endless. By changing things up, you can also include some fruit and/or vegetables to help you reach the recommended daily servings of each.
- Control portions: All foods can fit into a healthy diet; it is the portions that are sometimes out of control. The serving from a bag of chips is not the whole bag. Instead, measure out your serving. This simple act not only decreases the amount of food you typically consume, it also increases the chance you will eat a greater variety of foods.
- Pick protein: Protein will help you feel full. It is also essential for growth, healing and recovery from injuries. Protein sources you can choose from include lean meats, poultry, fish, eggs, dairy, beans and nuts. Pay attention to portion sizes since it’s easy to eat several servings of nuts, cheese, meat, etc.
- Drink water: Many people eat because they think they are hungry. In actuality they are thirsty. Try drinking a glass of water first – if you still feel hungry, then eat some fruit or veggies.
- Sleep more: Reason #1: You cannot eat if you are sleeping! Reason #2: Adequate sleep helps the body regenerate after a busy day. When you don’t get enough rest, you may find that you eat mindlessly instead of mindfully.
Bonus Tip: Start now and start slow. Small lifestyle modifications go a long way. Even when you hit a bump in the road, keep moving forward. Bumps are part of life; just remind yourself about the small changes you have already made and keep an eye on the goal – a healthier you.