Guest Post – Kac Young PhD, DCH. ND, Heart Easy Tips For Starting Your New Year Off Healthy

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newyearsDo you have New Year’s resolutions? Is one of them to eat healthier? Exercise? Lose weight? Stop smoking? Good choices! Here are 9 tips that will get you off to a great start and help you stay on track.

1. Write your resolutions down on a piece of paper and put them in a place you can see them every day.

2. Take baby steps. Don’t try to revolutionize your world overnight. Use patience and gentleness on yourself each day.

3. Set a goal and keep it. If you want to eat less sugar per week, then set your goal so you can achieve it. Take one or two sweet things away from your diet and stick with it. Be reasonable. If you are using a teaspoon of sugar in your coffee or tea, cut it down to 1/2 and the 1/4 and then 1/8.
If you want to eat less salt, do the same thing. Take away one or two salty foods each week that you know are bad for you. Taper your salt intake down by degrees.

4. Turn your diet around. As you remove food from your diet, ADD two new things that are healthier and better for you. Add a new vegetable (or a vegetable) to your meal plan. Try a new form of grains like quinoa or spelt.

5. Get into the habit of substitutions. If you are using regular pasta, switch from white flour pasta to whole or multi grain pasta. If you eat bread or toast, switch from white to whole or multi grain bread. Butter, salt, cheese etc., all have great new substitutions. Try them.

6. Eat foods in their natural state. Eat your fruits and vegetables raw as snacks instead of crackers, cookies or candy.

7. Cook from scratch. You’ll enjoy the flavors better and for under $30 you can get a slow cooker and create meals you prepare in minutes that cook while you do other things and are ready when you get home.

8. Don’t fret the slip ups. If you are eating healthy 80% of the time, you’re good. If you have to grab some fast food, don’t make it a big deal. Eat it and forget it. You can start again tomorrow.

9. Change is exciting and sometimes tricky, be kind to yourself and reward your good efforts with a treat. (No, not a hot fudge sundae!) Get yourself a massage, a facial, a pedicure, go to the movies (skip the popcorn!) or take in a museum. Don’t be afraid to praise yourself. If you don’t, who will?

Follow these 9 tips and you will be a healthier and happier you!

– Dr. Kac Young –