Happy New You! 
by Norene Gilletz

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When January 1st arrives, one of the most popular resolutions is to lose weight. I have made a commitment to move more (oy!) and eat less (sigh). Did you know that the Fork Lift is NOT considered an aerobic exercise?

Here are some timely tips to help you on your "weigh" to a healthier, happier New You!

Try to base the majority of your meals on the Big Four - vegetables, fruits, grains and legumes (e.g., beans, peas, lentils).
Include low-fat dairy products (skim or 1% milk, yogurt, low-fat cheeses) - they contain calcium. Substitute soy milk fortified with calcium if you are lactose-intolerant.
Choose whole grain breads, cereals and grains (brown rice, bulgur, kasha).
Eat fish, lean poultry and tofu instead of fatty beef. Enjoy vegetarian meals a few times a week.
Organize your grocery list according to categories: frozen foods, vegetables, fruits, dairy products, etc. It helps speed up shopping.
On your grocery list, include convenient staples with a long shelf life (pastas, canned beans, salmon, tuna); you'll need to shop less often.
There is no such thing as the perfect, magical diet. Strive for variety. Go for green cuisine (broccoli, kale, spinach) - they're lean!
Experiment with fresh herbs (basil, dill, thyme) - they add flavor without adding calories.
Try preparing familiar foods slightly differently (e.g. replace ground beef with ground turkey in recipes).
 For more tips on healthy shopping, read Ship-Shape Shopping.
If you're not on any sort of exercise program, it's time to get moving! Try working out early in the morning and stay as active as possible during the day. Exercise will help you control blood glucose levels, blood pressure, raise your good cholesterol, burn calories and reduce your stress levels.
Increase your activity levels. Little things mean a lot. I count cooking, shopping and cleaning up as "kitchen aerobics?" Lift that wok, tote that garbage pail, walk a little more and buy smaller clothes (on sale)!

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All images and recipes Norene Gilletz 2013 unless otherwise noted.
For reprint permission please contact Norene Gilletz

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