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Live life without limitations.

7 Steps to Forming Healthy Eating & Lifestyle Habits

Would you like to be healthier than you are right now? Or maybe you’re concerned about your future health, fitness and well-being. It may seem like there’s no way to make the necessary lifestyle changes.

“It may seem like there's no way to make the necessary lifestyle changes.”

Maybe you don’t know exactly how it happened, but somewhere along the way (between working all day, running errands and trying to get some rest) you have found yourself in a rut with signs of oncoming health problems.

Well, the good news is, there are easy steps to get you on the right path.

So relax, these steps don’t require a “cold turkey” approach to your healthier lifestyle. Just try out one simple step, one week at a time.

Step 1 – Add more vegetables.

Start by adding at least one healthy vegetable to each meal – and eat the veggies first. You can also use fresh cut up vegetables for snacks.

Most vegetables are high in vitamins, minerals and fiber and low in calories. Plus, there are lots of great ways to get more of the healthiest vegetables into your diet. For example, try adding romaine lettuce, tomatoes and sweet onions to your sandwiches. It can be that simple.

Add Vegetables | Women's Only

Step 2 – Eliminate “junk foods.”

We’re surrounded by junk food everywhere: refined grains, deep fried fast food, pastries, and on and on. And although giving it up takes commitment, you can do it. Begin by learning the unhealthy foods not to eat.

And when your buddies go out for greasy burgers and fries, order a large salad with dressing on the side (minus the bacon, cheese and croutons).

Just try it for a month and you’re guaranteed to start feeling better.

Eliminate Junk Food | Women's Only

Step 3 – Give up refined sugars.

Next, start getting rid of refined, high glycemic sweeteners; this means eliminating anything that can raise your blood sugar, including (but not limited to): white sugar, brown sugar, raw sugar, agave, high-fructose corn syrup, brown rice syrup, honey, cane juice, etc.

Learn the whole list of alternate names for sugar and read labels carefully to weed out hidden sugars. This may seem challenging at first, but it gets easier over time.

Give Up Refined Sugars | Women's Only

 

Step 4 – Include some fresh fruit.

Start using fruit to replace sweets. It’s high in fiber and most fresh fruit doesn’t raise your blood sugar. You can slice some bananas and berries into your morning sugar-free cereal, snack on an apple instead of a candy bar, and replace desert with a healthy fresh fruit salad recipe.

Soon fruit will taste so good you’ll wonder why you didn’t think of it sooner.

Include Fresh Fruit | Women's Only

Step 5 – Drink healthy beverages.

Many beverages are detrimental to your health, including the most popular, regular and diet sodas. Stick with healthy beverages like hot or iced herbal teas and (sound the trumpets) water. If you feel the need to ‘kick it up a notch’, include the juice of a freshly squeezed lemon in your water, and possibly even a little lemon stevia to make a healthy lemonade.

Drink Healthy Beverages | Women's Only

Step 6 – Take a happy, healthy hike.

Of course any kind of moderate exercise is healthy for you. But there are even more health benefits to taking a walk in the park or a hike on a trail. These benefits include getting some fresh air, being exposed to natural light and experiencing the simple pleasures that nature provides.

Take a Happy, Healthy Hike | Women's Only

Step 7 – Change your point of view.

Even if you successfully follow all of the other six steps above and do everything else right, if you don’t consistently work to maintain a positive, healthy, optimistic attitude your health and happiness will suffer.

So, be sure to keep your focus on “the sunny side of the street.”

Change Your Point of View | Women's Only

Remember: consistency is the key to success. Where have you succeeded in developing healthy habits? And where do you need improvement?