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Follow These Guidelines and Be Healthy!

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Forget thinking about 2013.  Think beyond just the New Year and vow to make healthier eating a lifestyle.  Registered Dietitian, Barb Able, told us how to really make your goals of eating better, stick.

Barb’s Tips:

Eat breakfast every day.

Breakfast is a very important meal, as it kick starts your day. You have been sleeping all night. It has probably been 8-12 hours since you have had any nourishment. Eating breakfast not only give you energy but will boost your metabolism. It is like putting gasoline in your car. Try to get away from fast food breakfast consisting of muffins and bagels. Good breakfast ideas are fresh fruit which will supply antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and insoluble fiber. Oatmeal is also a good plan as it will supply soluble fiber which will keep us feeling fuller longer. There are 2 important types of fiber, soluble like what is found in oatmeal. This soluble fiber dissolves in water to form a gel which slows down digestion and delays the emptying of your stomach and makes you feel full which will help control weight. Insoluble fiber adds bulk. It is like what ladies call exfoliates and detoxifiers. They add bulk to our diet and speed up the passage of food and waste through your gut. Don’t forget to always accompany carbohydrates with protein. Don’t be afraid of eggs. They are one of the highest biological value proteins there is and full of lutein which is a phytonutrient found to be good for our vision.

Keep it colorful

By eating a variety of colors at meal time and snack, you are assuring your body is getting the nutrients it needs. Also by eating more plant, you are replacing refined carbohydrates which are only going to add empty calories to your day with super foods. Add a salad to your lunch or dinner. Avoid iceberg and try spinach or mixed greens with kale and arugula. Power it up with vegetables such as broccoli, peppers, cauliflower, tomatoes, and beans for protein. But don’t kill it with the salad dressing. Try wonderful flavored balsamic vinegar instead of a creamy alternative.

Eat Snacks

Snacks are a great way to control hunger but they must be well planned and not just a trip to the vending machine. Pack a piece of fresh fruit, a low carb Greek yogurt, or even a handful of almonds.

Have regular meals

Always take the time to have regular meals and snacks. Skipping meals can lead to over eating because we are so starved. It also results in unhealthy weight loss. When our body anticipates that it is not going to be fed for a while, it shifts into survival mode and slows down our metabolic rate. Then when we do resume a regular eating pattern, weight gain results.

Focus on healthy fats
Fats are essential for good health. Fats are needed for absorption of nutrients especially fat soluble vitamins A,D,E and K. They supply essential fatty acids. But they need to be the right kind of fats. Try unsaturated fats like olive and canola oil, nuts and seeds, avocados and fatty fish like salmon and sardines.

Know your portion sizes

If in doubt, remember that a serving of fruit or grains is about the size of your fist, and a serving of meat is the size of a deck of cards or the palm of your hand.

Always include your favorites

Remember to enjoy your favorite foods but do so in moderation. Never label foods as good or bad. By adding them occasionally in healthy amounts, you are adding pleasure to your eating and satisfying those cravings. So don’t feel guilty.

Go for the water

Sugar-sweetened beverages like soda, punch, juice, and energy drinks drive up kcal intake and weight gain. Water is an easy way to drive down your overall intake. Studies show that adults who drank two cups of water before a meal ate less at meal time and lost weight over a 12 week study. Water is so important for all bodily functions, keeps you hydrated and fights fatigue which is a symptom that tends to lead to overeating.

Swap Out Beef for Fish

Try to eat 2 servings of fish a week. Be sure to bake or broil and not fry your fish. It is packed with protein and a good source of omega-3-fatty acids which reduces the risk of heart disease. It will also keep you feeling fuller longer.


Get moving. Biggest reason not to exercise is “no time.” Don’t feel you have to cram it all into one session. Try spreading it out though out the day. Walking is often your best bet. It burns 200 cal and hour. Try what our staff does at Shawnee Mission on breaks, taking walks around the parking lot, climbing the stairs.

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