Courtesy of the Alliance for a Healthier Generation
Each New Year brings pledges that this is the year that you and your family will be healthy and fit. The Alliance for a Healthier Generation, a national non-profit founded by the American Heart Association and the William J. Clinton Foundation to combat childhood obesity, has five helpful strategies to help you take positive steps in making small, but significant, changes to your own habits that’ll get your family moving too.
Make Gradual Changes
Don’t try to overhaul everything at once. Cut out one indulgent drink a week by swapping it for a refreshing glass of water. Walk 10 minutes longer every week. Reduce your sugar intake by putting one less packet of sugar in your morning coffee or tea. Small changes can make a big difference on the road to good health.
Add One Step At A Time
Take the stairs instead of the escalator. Park at the back of the parking lot and walk instead of cruising for the closest spot – it’ll cut down on the carbons, while burning extra calories.
Focus On Health, Not Weight
Don’t talk about your weight or put yourself down in front of your kids. You don’t want them to think that a healthy lifestyle is only about how much they weigh. Instead, focus on how the small changes are improving your health and energy so your family will know that a healthy lifestyle isn’t just about numbers on the scale.
Take It Slow
It takes 20 minutes for your stomach to tell your brain you’ve been fed. By slowing down your eating, your brain will realize you are full sooner. Try little tricks to slow yourself down such as putting your fork down between every bite, take sips of water here and there, engage in conversation as a family and simply savor your meal more.
Try not to complain about how much you may dislike exercising or eating healthy foods—your kids will hear you. Focusing on the positive aspects of things will keep you motivated to stay healthy, too!