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Wherever we go, there seems to be an endless supply of healthy eating tips. Magazines, television, internet, everywhere! It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out why there's such an intense demand, it's because so many people struggle. So, why is healthy eating so difficult?


If you try to change EVERYTHING at once, you may be overcome with it all, and give up because the effort is simply too much.


Be assured that a gradual, step-by-step approach does work!  The Fitter Fort Collins Program is a lifestyle program.


What Will You Decide to Change TODAY?


1.  Eat More Whole Grains. When buying bread, go for brands that state whole wheat, whole grain, or sprouted grain as the first ingredient.  Whole breads are more nutritious, and more sustaining than the processed varieties, such as those made with white or enriched flours.


2.  Eat Plenty of Veggies. Most of us don't eat enough vegetables in a day, which means were missing out on the

essential nutrients and fiber. Aim for at least 5+ servings every day, and try to include a mix of different colored vegetables.


3.  Eat Plenty of Fruit. Aim for around 2 - 3 servings of brightly colored fruits each day, and don't forget you can include frozen fruit, or a small handful of dried fruit to increase the variety in your diet.


4.  Make Fresh Fruit and Veggies Accessible. Prepare a large bowl of fresh fruit salad and store in your fridge, or keep vegetables cut in plastic containers.


5.  Eat from the Whole Foods Food Groups: Vegetables, fruits, grains, beans, legumes, raw nuts and seeds.


6.  Don't Stock Processed Food. When your home is packed with healthy snacks rather than processed junk food.

choosing to eat healthy food will become so much easier. So, try to keep a bowl of colorful fruit in your kitchen, and place other healthy snacks at the bottom of the fridge, so that your children can easily access them. If you do have junk food in your home, place it out of sight, on the top shelve of your cupboard, to help remove temptation.


7.  Cook Ethnic Cuisine. Very often ethnic recipes are much healthier than American cuisine, so check out your local

library for inspiration, and add more variety to your current eating. Take care with recipes that are loaded with dairy, saturated fats, and salt and go for a lighter alternative. These additives are not health foods and contribute to dis-ease in your body.


8.  Choose Omega-3 Rich Foods. Everyone should implement omega-3 in their diet.  Omegas are vital for heart health, improving mood, and brain function.  Omega-3 rich plant foods include flax seeds, hemp seeds, walnuts, soybeans, beans, wheat germ, black currant.  


9.  Drink Water. Water is essential for keeping the cells in our body hydrated, for chemical reactions, for the digestive system, and for energy production. So, aim for drinking 1/2 your body weight in oz. per day. If you find it difficult to drink enough, try carrying a bottle of water with you at all times, to encourage more drinking.


10.  Don't Drink Soft Drinks. I'd suggest you reduce your intake to never, ever. Soft drinks provide no nutritional value, and there's simply no room for them in your diet if you're aiming to eat healthy. You should also reduce your intake of fruit juice, sports drinks, and alcohol, and replace with water as much as possible.


11.  Never, Ever Super-Size. In fact I'd go even further, never eat fast food! Fast food isn't really food, it has zero

nutritional content, and isn't good for you in any shape or form. So, why bother eating it?  It's just a heart attack on a plate. 


12.  Teach Your Children to Cook. If you want to teach your children healthy eating skills, teaching them to have an active interest in cooking is an excellent way.  Kids love to try out food they've helped to create. If they're picky about veggies for example, ask that they help in the preparation. This should be enough to encourage that they try some.


13.  Always Read Labels. Food manufacturers don't make it easy for us to know what's in our food. So, you need to get into the habit of reading the fine print on the back of the packages. 


14.  Reduce Your Portion Size. Are you gaining weight despite trying to eat healthier? While you may be eating good food, perhaps you're eating it in all the wrong portions. Try to get into the habit of checking the suggested serving on the back of food packages to find out what an acceptable serving should look like.


15.  Stock Healthy Foods. If you only buy ready meals, and convenience foods, guess what? That's what you're going to fill up on. But, if you make the effort to stock healthy ingredients, removing those that lead to binging, you will find eating healthy much easier. What unhealthy foods could you stop purchasing today?


16.  Eat Healthy Snacks When Away from Home. Try to keep a supply of healthy snacks with you at all times, and

especially when you leave home. This way you can graze on healthy food that will help maintain your energy and blood sugar levels, and prevent cravings for coffee and donuts. Easily transportable healthy snacks include small amounts of whole nuts, seeds, dried fruit, quick and easy vegetables like carrots, celery and snap peas, or whole fruit.


17.  Preserve the Nutritional Goodness in Your Veggies. If you cook your vegetables to a pulp, you won't benefit from their nutritional goodness! Instead use lighter cooking methods such as steaming, or stir-frying quickly, or try raw vegetables occasionally for added variety.


18.  Use Healthier Cooking Methods for Meals. When cooking meals avoid frying or using oil, instead choose grilling, poaching, baking, or roasting and using a light cooking spray if needed.


19.  Go Totally Plant Based at Least One Day Each Week. Plant based cooking can be really healthy and good, so rather than serving meat and dairy at each meal, be adventurous and try:

   -  Peas, beans and lentils

   -  Organic soy-based foods, including tofu

   -  Seeds, nuts and nut butters 


20.  Fill Half Your Plate with Veggies. An easy way to make all of your meals healthier is to simply add an extra portion of vegetables, or a large green salad, rather than having a huge portion of creamy potatoes, or french fries.


21.  Eat Plenty of Fiber Rich Foods. A diet rich in fibrous foods is essential for a healthy digestive system. So, try to include plenty of fruits, veggies, whole grain breads, oats, wholemeal pasta, brown or wild rice, and make sure you're drinking lots of water so that the fiber can work effectively.


22.  Share Dessert. When you feel like having dessert, try fruit, applesauce or fruit based cobblers.  These choices will be much healthier, and satisfying.


23.  Drink Herbal Tea. Herbal tea is thought to be beneficial in reducing the risk of a number of diseases. 


24.  Don't Drink Coffee. Coffee can put you on an energy roller coaster, it's also high acid which depletes the bones of calcium.  


25.  Eat Regular Meals. If you're trying to lose weight, fasting is not effective long-term. Instead eat regular, light meals to help you lose weight, maintain your blood sugar levels, and prevent binge eating. Aim for 3 meals, and 2 - 3 healthy snacks each day.


26.  Bring A Packed Lunch. In the interest of your health, and your pocket, bring a packed lunch to work with you. This way you'll be able to control what goes into your mouth, and the time you save waiting in line to order can be enjoyed by taking a brisk walk instead.


27.  Allow Your Children to Pick Treats from the Produce Section. More often than not children want to choose

something for themselves at the supermarket. So, rather than allowing them to pick sweets or chocolate, why not give them the opportunity to choose a treat from the produce section, such as a piece of fresh fruit. Young children are often happy that they simply get to choose something themselves, and it will also teach them to appreciate healthy food.


28.  Start Your Own Fruit and Veggie Patch. If you want to eat the most nutritious, delicious tasting veggies and fruit, you can grow your own!

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