Living a Healthy Lifestyle
Nutrition and Food
- Balance your meals. Have protein, healthy carbohydrate, fat and vegetables and/fruit at each meal.
- Healthy Carbohydrates include brown rice, whole wheat breads, pastas and crackers, starchy vegetables like sweet potatoes, parsnips and potatoes, quinoa, millet, amaranth.
- Eat three meals plus snacks. Eating three meals plus snacks ensures that you will eat on a schedule and get enough calories and nutrients. The metabolism functions best on a similar schedule daily. Eating every 4-5 hours guarantees plenty of energy and efficient metabolism.
- Snacks are important if you get hungry in between meals. They consist of a protein and/or fat + a carbohydrate (refer to snacking handout). Snacks keep your energy going until meal time and reduce your chances of overeating at meals.
- Proportion your plate to visually have about ½ vegetables and/or fruit, ¼ protein, ¼ healthy carbohydrate and some fat at each meal.
Body Maintenance: Be nice to your body and pay attention to what it needs
Eat enough every day — not eating enough tells your body to conserve calories and energy, and so the next time you eat more of the energy will be retained rather than being properly used.
Hydrate – Dehydration makes you feel tired. Caffeine and alcohol are very dehydrating. Balance caffeine or alcohol consumption with non-caffeinated, non-alcoholic fluids.
Sleep – Sleep deprivation increases appetite (and often body weight) and decreases brain function. So proper sleep helps your energy, weight maintenance and your ability to think and concentrate.
Exercise – Try to exercise at least 30 minutes a day, three times a week – it can even be split up into 10-minute walks. The effects of brief physical exertion last much longer than those of caffeine, and exercise decreases stress rather than increasing it! Finding a physical activity that you really like to do will make exercise more fun and something to look forward to as well as help to keep you healthy throughout life. So try something new or something that has always appealed to you.
How do I look?
If we all looked the same the world would be a very boring place.
Genes (not jeans) have a lot to do with body shape — there is no “right” weight for someone of a certain height. If you are eating and acting healthily, your weight is probably fine.
Shaped like a pear? Fat around the hips, butt, and thighs is usually estrogen dependent, meaning that it doesn’t go away through exercise and healthy nutrition. Torso fat, on the other hand, is associated with poor health.
Repeated dieting can actually lower metabolism and thus make your body retain more of what you put into it. Increasing exercise while not giving your body more food to compensate can also increase body fat storage. Dieting also increases heart disease risk, when compared to simply gaining a little weight. If you really need to lose weight, the most effective way is to increase exercise and cutting only a little food, while concentrating on fruits, veggies, and high fibre foods.
Healthy Lifestyle Key Attributes
- Eat Healthy
- Think Positive Thoughts
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