The first step toward maintaining a healthier diet is to focus on addition, rather than deprivation. This may sound strange to those looking to lose weight — doesn't it stand to reason that in order to weigh less, one must consume less? The answer is: Not necessarily. The foods most responsible for America's obesity crisis are processed foods (which are notoriously high in sodium), red meats, and sugary beverages such as soda. The key is to introduce more whole foods — vegetables, leafy greens, fish, poultry, whole grains — and to reduce or eliminate processed meats and refined carbohydrates.
In today's frantically-paced world, this is easier said than done. However, there are numerous ways to maintain a diet rich in the “right” foods, without spending half of your waking hours in the kitchen. Many supermarkets, for example, now sell individual portions of prepared fruits and vegetables, making it difficult to excuse reaching for a bag of chips instead “because it's easier.” Tuck a few servings of carrot sticks or apple slices in your box lunch, and resist the urge to visit the office vending machine. An ounce or two of roasted almonds will satisfy the urge for something crunchy, while providing a great source of protein.
Another tip? Eat a good breakfast. Aim for two servings of fruit and one serving of low-fat dairy, such as Greek yogurt. The probiotics will keep your digestive system working at its optimum level, and can even reduce your risk of certain types of heart disease.
A lesser percent of New Year's resolutions involve spending more time working out. Unfortunately for those who live in four-season climates, the weather around January can be prohibitive when it comes to achieving these ends. Take advantage of local offers — health clubs are aware that many folks will attempt to boost their exercise regimen in the new year, and will offer discounts on annual memberships. Now might be the perfect time to invest in a treadmill or other equipment, as well. The benefits will outweigh the cost in the long run.
If you're the intrepid type, don't discount the pleasures of a good outdoor winter workout. The air is clean and refreshing, and your body is its own natural heat source. Just be sure to bundle up before heading out, and watch your step on icy and snowy roads. If you ski, snowshoe, or ice-skate, then make these activities part of your routine, rather than an occasional weekend treat. You owe it to yourself. In addition to regular exercise, try implementing Le-Vel Thrive products into your routine. These popular products can help you lose and maintain your goal weight.
Getting Your Vitamins and Minerals
The good news is that this resolution ties in nicely with the first, in that eating better tends to go hand-in-hand with higher vitamin and mineral consumption — and vice versa. The aforementioned almond, for example, is a wonderful source of vitamin E; while raw milk rounds out the start of the alphabet with vitamins A, B, C, and D, as well as calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus.
If you're still worried about not getting enough vitamins and minerals through food consumption alone, consider making a multivitamin a part of your daily routine.
Remember: the year is 365 days long, so there's no rush to achieve everything at once. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is a process; there's no finish line to cross. So take the new regimen one day at a time, and here's to a healthy and successful 2018.