According to recent Nielsen reports, more than one in three Americans have resolved to stay fit in 2017. If you’re among them—or would like to be—you may be glad to learn that being healthy doesn’t mean you have to give up a lot of time or sacrifice the finer things in life such as dining out.
What You Can Do
1. Get moving. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that most adults should spend about two and a half hours a week on some sort of physical activity—but that can include walking, dancing, biking, even gardening and housework. Also, you don’t have to do it all at once. A brisk 10- to 15-minute walk, two or three times a day, will do the trick.
2. Drink (water) to your health. Researchers at the University of Birmingham in Britain suggest drinking about 16 ounces before each meal can help you feel fuller faster.
3. Keep your comfort. Healthy eating is all about balance. You can enjoy your favorite foods even if they are high in calories, fat or added sugars. The key is eating them only once in a while, and balancing them out with healthier foods and more physical activity. No need to give up your favorite comfort foods, just go for smaller portions, eaten less frequently. Or try a lower-calorie version. For example, if your macaroni and cheese recipe uses whole milk, butter and full-fat cheese, try remaking it with nonfat milk, less butter, light cream cheese, fresh spinach and tomatoes. Just remember to not increase your portion size.
4. Slow down. If you eat too quickly, you may “clean your plate” instead of stopping when your hunger is satisfied. Savor each bite and pay attention to the company and conversation around you. Give your body time to digest a bit before going on to the next course.
5. Eat smart. As for dining out, simply making smart choices such as having fruit for dessert, getting an appetizer instead of a main dish or having a nice, filling salad can let you still have fun while out with family or friends without sabotaging your goals. Eating healthy isn’t just for grown-ups. With such kid-friendly options as mandarin oranges, grapes and diced apples, the entire family can enjoy eating together.
For other tips please visit cdc.org.