Select Page
8 Small Steps to Improve Your Health

8 Small Steps to Improve Your Health

8 Small Steps to Improve Your Health

In a few weeks, we will start another month and moving farther away from our beginning of the year goals. To that extent, this might be a great time to reflect on those goals and evaluate our progress.

It is difficult to see the year quickly passing, but it is rewarding to see how our goals have been put into practice and achievements are being made weekly.

One of those common goals to evaluate from month-to-month is the status of our health. Many people will make a health goal (some call it a resolution) at the beginning of the year. Those goals might be to stop eating poorly, gain better nutrition, stop smoking, walk more, or finally make use of that gym membership.

While setting high-achieving goals is common, setting smaller goals will help you on your way to achieving all your goals. This concept applies to your health goals as well.

Take a moment and reflect on the goals you set at the beginning of this year, or even at the end of last year, and see how you are achieving those goals.

Dr. James Hill, Director of the Center for Human Nutrition at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center is noted as saying, “Small steps are achievable and are easier to fit into your daily routine. They are less overwhelming than a big, sudden change.”

Thinking of Dr. Hill’s words, allow us to offer 10 small steps you can take today to improve your health.

#1 – Watch your weight.

Most of us have a bathroom scale around the house. It might have found its way to an obscure corner of the room, but we know where it is located. Take an evaluation of your weight regularly.

8 Small Steps to Improve Your Health

#2 – Just a few more steps a day.

Start taking a few more steps in your daily routine. Simple things like walking a few more steps at work, in your home, in the store and everywhere can quickly add up over time. Make it a point to park a little further from the store, if you are able, and get those extra steps. You might use a pedometer to keep track of your steps. Set a goal of 8,000 to 10,000 steps a day and see if you can achieve that for one week.

#3 – Eat an excellent breakfast.

People tend to skip what we have called the most important meal of the day. Having a good, nutritious breakfast will kick start your body into action. In the days of a “grab-and-go” breakfast, many are not finding the nutrition they need to maintain a good day. Some people find success in eating a whole grain cereal topped off with fruit in low-fat or fat-free milk. It is quick and simple, while giving you a prepare start. Remember, everyone is different, but I would avoid loading your body up with sugar filled treats to start your day.

#4 – Drink water.

Your body needs hydrated and hydrated well. Just because a drink has water in it does not mean you are getting the proper hydration. Many people think that any liquid hydrates and it does not. You need to drink water daily. Many will say that you need to drink half your body weight in ounces of water. Example: if you weigh 200lbs, you should drink 100 ounces of water a day.

#5 – A salad a day.

Eating one salad a day will make a difference if you try it. While you are trying to work on your health, but some excellent food into your system. This will add motivation to your actions, you will notice a change in your lifestyle. Remember when you have a salad, not to load it up with dressing. Dressing will add calories, fat and sugar to your system. In the past, we considered it healthy to eat at least five cups of fruits and vegetables a day. Having one salad a day will help you meet that goal.

#6 – Downsize your servings.

Instead of grabbing the entire bag of chips, pour the chips into a bowl. A simple change to downsize your serving sizes will make a difference to the amount of food you put into your system. Try changing the size of your plate and see if it changes the size of your portion.

#7 – Try some yogurt.

Some in the health world feel that adding two to three servings of low-fat or fat-free yogurt to your diet will help you lose weight and even boost your immune system. This dose of daily calcium will be good for your bones as well.

Is Organic Worth It?

#8 – Track your food intake.

One of the best things you can do for your health is to track what you are putting into your system. It might be the case that you are eating more food than you realize, or you might find your food intake balance is tilted one way. Sometimes, stress eating is something we never track or consider. Try to track your food and see how it helps.

You can begin today and change your health future.

It will take action. It will take work. It will take motivation. It will take time.

You can start today and begin following a few of these steps and watch your health improve.

To your success,


Just Say No: Healthy Eating and Peer Pressure

Just Say No: Healthy Eating and Peer Pressure

If you are on a diet or simply enjoying a healthy lifestyle, then you probably know that peer pressure to eat foods that are not good for you is a major part of your life.


Peer pressure never disappears. When we were younger, our parents warned of a peer pressure. There was a point where we thought peer pressure might disappear, but now we know it is not the case.

Peer pressure even finds its way into our lives and affect our health and wellness. One of those ways is healthy eating.

If you are worried about the food that goes into your mouth, don’t worry—there are ways to overcome peer pressure. It simply takes a little know-how to get people off your back!

There are several areas you need to be aware of to assist you in your desire to live a healthier life and make healthy eating a part of that lifestyle.

Parties are a major source of peer pressure where you may find yourself eating one processed off food after another. Many parties are not a sit-down meal, but a variety of appetizers and desserts. This scenario can provide many temptations to make unhealthy choices.

Another time when you may feel pressured to eat is at work when the boss orders lunch for everyone at a meeting or when you must visit a client. Instead of giving in to temptation, simply politely decline the food by letting your boss know in advance.

Most people will understand when you explain that you are on a journey to begin a healthier lifestyle and that includes eating better.  A simple discussion can make a difference and who knows, you might have an influence on the food choices for the better

Another idea when the boss order lunch or you meet with a client is to order a healthy meal and split the portion in half so you have a meal for tomorrow’s lunch as well.

Other friendly events like baby showers, weddings, birthday parties, and other special events can also wreak havoc on your diet, even if you are good at resisting temptation on your own.

When someone hands you a piece of cake and won’t take no for an answer, it can be difficult to know what to say. A polite decline and a small explanation usually provide the best way to communicate your choice for healthy eating. Most people I have encountered understand and it does not create a problem.

Remember, however, while refusing bad foods is fine, you should be eating good foods. If you do not, dangerous eating habits and disorders can develop, which will give you, your friends, and your doctor a real reason to worry.

It’s ok to say no to peer pressure, but don’t say no to food in general!

It is important to understand when you decline food that others may not understand, and it does not hurt to let them know why you are declining the invitation.

In your choice to live healthier, you may influence them to begin a healthier lifestyle as well.

Check back for more later.



Is Organic Worth It?

Is Organic Worth It?

When you head to the grocery store, shopping for products like eggs, meat, fish, milk, and produce can be very tricky. You will see signs posted everywhere labeling food as natural, organic, and several other things—but what’s the difference? Learning what specific names mean can help you decide if you should spend extra money on a product if it is a marketing ploy. 

Natural is a term associated with several fruit and vegetable products. Think about the previous sentence for a moment. Typically, this is a marketing ploy to convince you to buy the product. All fruits and vegetables are natural, right? Unless it’s a new food that has been developed and processed, the product is natural. What you probably want is organic. Organic foods are grown without chemical pesticides and fertilizers. 

There are two main benefits to organic foods:

First, you are helping the environment because those chemicals are not being introduced into nature.

Second, you are avoiding ingesting chemicals and are therefore healthy more healthy foods. 

However, organic products are usually more expensive. 

Many people who are on a tight budget, will skip organic fruits and vegetables that can be peeled, like oranges and bananas. Once the peel they discard the peel, the chemicals are also discarded. (There has been an ongoing debate whether the chemicals soak through the peel and get into the fruit. This will continually be a subject that will be researched.)

Instead, opt for organic items like apples, where you eat the peel. No matter what you buy, however, make sure you rinse off the food when you get home. 

Another tricky label you will see is “no hormones.” The label “no hormones” is usually regarding milk or meat products and is false, since all animals naturally produce hormones. Hormones help an animal (even a human) regulate body organs, have young, and otherwise function. All meat products have hormones; natural hormones.

The label “no hormones” really means that no hormones were unnaturally given to the animal, which is sometimes done to increase milk production. Regardless of hormones, however, the milk and meat is safe for a person and not a violation of an animal’s rights. 

Lastly, a label on eggs and meat can show if the animal was caged or penned. This does not make a difference in the quality or nutritional value of the egg, but is a matter of animal rights. These products may be more expensive, but if you want to make human decisions, that is the way to go.

Reading the label and making healthy choices can sometimes be difficult but learning how to do so can help you make the best choices for you diet.

Check back later for more. 

Diet and Activity Bring Success

Diet and Activity Bring Success

Nutrition and physical activity go together like bread and butter for our bodies. Wait, did I say bread?

Carbs! Run away!

Butter? Oh yeah…lots of butter!

Exercise is going to take our lives to a better fitness level along with four other major things:

  • Flexibility
  • Strength
  • Muscle endurance
  • Cardiovascular health.

Dieting alone is not going to be able to give you all of these health benefits – you must be physically active. A diet will help you to lose weight, but a total body enhancement needs to have a dietary change along with physical activity.

One thing to remember is that a bad diet can affect the way that your fitness training goes even if you follow the best type of exercise plan that you can.

You need to put a healthy diet and a lot of exercise together to stay as healthy as you can!

How long you need to exercise to keep as healthy as you can?

The statement most say is that the “average person” needs at least 20 minutes of exercise three times a week.  This doesn’t sound like much, but this  will help to strengthen your cardiovascular health and your overall fitness. Basically, those three times of 20 minutes, gets you off your rear and moving in the right direction.

The “average person” may need 20 minutes three times a week, but what do you need?

Maybe you need more? Maybe you are not settling for average, but you are pursuing excellent. Make that 20 minutes 6 days a week.

Maybe you work out your upper body 3 times a week for 20 minutes and then your lower body 3 times a week for 20 minutes?

20 minutes is not that long. You can do it.

How Many Calories Should I Burn?

You will hear others say that another good idea to keep in mind is that you should burn 3500 calories in a week by doing any sort of physical activity.

The benefit of burning 3500 calories changes you and your heart as well. Burning calories that you gain while eating begins to change your body. You are using that energy in your physical activity. You are literally burning those calories.

You may need to burn less than 3500. Maybe 1500 is the goal you begin with at first, then progress to 2000, then 2500, etc.

Proper nutrition helps when you are burnign your calories. The proper diet will aid you in your physical goals.

NOTE: When you start any type fitness plan it is a good idea to speak to your doctor/medical professional to find out what exercise plan is going to be best for you. When you speak with your doctor discuss special concerns like blood pressure, hypertension and any special diet needs that you have.

Does Diet Make a Difference?

Simply put, YES!

Having a healthy diet and exercise plan can do many things for your overall well-being. You will feel better, have more energy and find yourself wantin to do more.

Did you know that you can use diet to control high blood pressure? 

Throughout the years, studies have discovered that exercise has a role in keeping blood pressure from increasing. 

Did you know that a reduction of sodium into your body, weight loss and limited alcohol use, along with the increased amount of physical activity and a low  fat diet, you can control hypertension?

Further, there is also growing evidence that weight bearing exercises like walking, dancing, running, sports are very good for good bone health. Physical activity makes you stronger and better. You can do it!

Remember, exercise alone cannot make your body healthy. 

You need to have a good healthy diet that provides the proper calcium, vitamins and minerals along with the adequate amount of exercise to keep your body working great for the rest of your life.

Are you ready for a change?

Are you ready to change your diet?

Are you ready to change your physical activity?

This is your new day.

You can do it!

How to Start Healthy Eating

How to Start Healthy Eating

It is not as hard as you think.

But…it will take time and some difficult choices. You can do it when you have focused your mind for the long-term benefits of living better.

Many times we may have the knowledge, but it is making the choice to apply that knowledge which makes eating healthier a difficult action. Remember, just because you may have knowledge, does not mean you are using your knowledge.

If you currently do not eat a healthy diet, it can be difficult to start but healthy eating is important for maintaining bodily function and living a disease-free life. If you struggle with healthy eating, then you know that breaking unhealthy habits can be the most difficult part of the process.

However, if you truly want to live the best lifestyle possible, it is important to follow tips in order to start eating a healthier diet.

A good beginning step when you want to start eating more healthily is to remove all the food that do not fit into “healthy categories” from your home. Start by removing the foods you have that are tempting you to keep up an unhealthy lifestyle. Keep junk foods and sugar-laced beverages out of your house so you will not be tempted to snack during the day.

If you’re worried about getting hungry, keep healthy snacks like carrot sticks, yogurt, fresh fruit, or whole-wheat crackers on hand. If you find you just cannot bear to toss out the sweets, try keeping something tiny on hand, like chocolate chips. Eating a few of these won’t ruin your diet but also will give you that little sugary fix you rave.

If you’re worried about what to drink once the sugar-laced beverages are gone, keep a water bottle handy and sip on water throughout the day. There are also various sugar-free, natural flavor add-ins you can use with water. Keep lemons and limes on hand to add to your water to give it a flavorful kick.

Another great step to healthy eating when you first starting the process is to take a few moments to learn about what foods are the healthiest for you and how they work in the body. Most people understand that fruits, vegetables, and low-fat means and dairy products are good for you, but few people understand why.

The key is learning about nutrients. When you understand how specific nutrients work in the body, you will be more likely to make these healthy choices for your body. Knowledge really is power!

When cleansing yourself to prepare for a new healthy diet, you should also take into consideration your schedule for meals. If you often eat in a rushed hurry at odd times of day, you probably are not getting the best foods possible. So, plan ahead!

Instead of grabbing a fast food lunch on the go, take a bagged lunch to work, complete with a healthy wrap and some fresh vegetables. Plan ahead for healthy meals in the evening as well by cooking ahead if you are not currently getting healthy dinners and have little time to cook when you get home every night.

Start with baby steps!


Even if you only replace one soda a day with a glass of water, you are really improving your calorie intake. If you eat fast food every day for lunch, try replacing that even half of the time. When you start by taking small steps, it does not seem like you are cutting out all of the foods you love and you can take your time to learn about healthy foods which you can love equally as well.

Check back for more to come!