A Healthier You

Measuring tape with bowl of strawberries.

Losing weight can sometimes be difficult. And when it comes to weight loss, a quick fix is desired. There are countless fad diets on the market today, but if the weight that was lost is gained once the diet is complete, then it really did not work. The dilemma with fad diets is that they are not sustainable. What does work? What is sustainable? Time and time again I hear the phrase, “I know what to do and how to do it, but it’s making myself do it.” Hopefully, with a few tips and a little self-motivation, you can lead a healthier lifestyle.

Tip #1. Keep track of everything you consume and your activity throughout the day. Although this might seem tedious, it is a game changer. The science shows those who self-monitor their food intake and activity have successful outcomes when it comes to weight loss and weight management. You can simply keep track by pen and paper or there are apps available for tracking your daily intake too. Keeping a log helps you to see what you are consuming and how much. This leads to tip #2.

Tip #2. Look at your habits. If you kept a record of your daily intake, you may be able to see a pattern. Are you grazing all day? (That might be a rhetorical question under our current quarantine conditions.) Are you drinking a lot of sugary beverages? Are you eating more at one meal and not others? Are you sitting and watching television with a bag of chips? Really be honest with yourself. This can lead to great success.

Tip #3. Find a habit that can lead to a healthier lifestyle. For example, you consume three 8oz sodas per day. Try to limit it to one 8oz soda per day. Something so simple can help to decrease about 280 calories of your daily intake. Take some time and evaluate your habits. Small changes to your daily habits can lead to a healthier you.

Tip #4. Variety and moderation. When we choose to go on a diet, we tend to restrict ourselves of certain foods or completely take away an entire food group. This is a set-up for failure. We may be able to do this diet for a few weeks, but is it sustainable? What happens when we allow ourselves to eat those restricted foods again? We may overindulge and possibly gain more weight back than what was lost. Choosemyplate.gov is an excellent resource to use when it comes to variety, moderation, and a realistic healthy eating lifestyle.

Tip #5. Physical activity and rest go together. Most adults need at least seven to nine hours of sleep according to the National Sleep Foundation. The American College of Sports Medicine Health and Fitness Journal state that research has found that exercisers go to sleep more quickly, sleep more soundly, and are more refreshed than individuals who do not exercise. Come up with a plan that works for you. Try to make physical activity part of your everyday routine. It is when we are consistent that we will reap the benefits.

For more general nutrition information and/or questions, please feel free to contact me at kguedry@agcenter.lsu.edu. Be sure to “Like” our Facebook Page, Pointe Coupee Parish Extension Office-LSU AgCenter to get more information on all extension activities in our parish.

Resources:

Eatright.org

Acsm.org

Sleepfoundation.org

www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3268700/

5/1/2020 7:39:57 PM
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