Living a balanced lifestyle through physical activity and a healthy relationship with food can offer numerous health benefits such as better quality of life, longer lifespan, and decreased risk for certain chronic diseases such as cancer, diabetes, and heart disease.
What Should I Eat?
Two basic principles for a healthy relationship with food are mindful eating and focusing on a balanced, healthy plate.
Mindful eating can help individuals find a healthy relationship with food. This includes listening to one’s body and being present in this moment. Mindful eating sets the focus on making healthy and sound decisions above the goal of losing weight to offer a more sustainable approach to overall health. Examples of mindful eating include savoring your food slowly while noticing texture and flavor, listening to and following the body’s hunger and fullness cues, and speaking and thinking compassionately about oneself.
A balanced, healthy plate includes vegetables and fruits, whole grains, lean proteins, fats, flavors, and beverages.
Vegetables & Fruits
Enjoy fruit with your meal, as a snack, or even as a dessert. Choose whole fruits that are fresh, frozen, dried, or canned in 100% juice. Choose a rainbow of color when it comes to veggies. Enjoy them raw or prepare them in different ways such as steaming, sautéing, baking, or roasting.
Whole grain options can be easily identified by checking the first ingredient on the ingredient list – does it include the word “whole” in it? If so, then it is a whole grain. Choose whole grains such as whole grain bread or pasta, brown rice, oats, and even corn.
Choose lean proteins like seafood, beans and peas, nuts and seeds, soy, eggs, milk and yogurt, lean meats, and skinless poultry most days of the week and enjoy higher fat meats in moderation.
Choose to cook with vegetable-based oils instead of butter and enjoy oil-based sauces and dips instead of ones with butter, cream, or cheese.
Enjoy flavors in your food from a variety of spices, herbs, vegetables, and fruits. Some examples of flavors are pepper, oregano, thyme, garlic, and onion.
Choose water instead of sweetened beverages. Water can be infused with flavors from your favorite vegetables, fruits, and herbs such as cucumber, lemon, mint, and strawberries.
How Much Physical Activity Should I Get?
Physical activity helps us both immediately and in our long-term health. Physical activity can help strengthen our bodies, improve our sleep quality, maintain a healthy weight, and play a role in chronic disease prevention.
Children and teens need 60 minutes of physical activity each day, and adults need at least 30 minutes a day, five days a week. Physical activity can be defined as anything above and beyond your normal activities of daily living. Some examples of physical activity are dancing, active chores like vacuuming, gardening or yard work, playing a sport, riding a bicycle, stretching, walking, and yoga!
Physical activity does not have to be only in 30-minute increments. If you can be physically active for ten or fifteen minutes at a time, do it. All physical activity counts as part of your daily 30-minute needs.
Safe Weight Loss
Safe weight loss is defined as a loss of one-half to two pounds per week. When we implement new practices like a balanced, healthy plate and physical activity, though, sometimes we do not see an immediate change in weight because of changes in our body composition such as muscle and fat content. Often we will notice differences in how our clothing fits and how we feel before we see a change on the scale. Gradual weight loss through sustainable lifestyle changes is a healthier approach than restrictive dieting. Remember, healthy living is a process, and you are choosing to invest in yourself and your future through living a balanced lifestyle through physical activity and having a healthy relationship with food.
Weight Management Shopping List
Vegetables & Fruits:
Frozen, no sugar or sodium added
Canned Fruit, in 100% fruit juice
Canned Vegetables, no sodium added
Dried, no sugar added
Rice, brown or wild
Tortillas, corn or whole wheat
Whole grain bread
Whole grain pasta
Whole grain cereal, low-sugar
Beans and Peas, dried or canned
Greek Yogurt, low-sugar and low-fat or fat-free
Meat, lean cuts
Milk, low-fat or fat-free
Nuts and Seeds
Yogurt, low-sugar and low-fat or fat-free
Fruits and Vegetables, your choice
Herbs, fresh or dried
Water, plain or infused or sparkling
Unsweetened beverages like tea, coffee, and unflavored milk
Not only does Reasor’s offer the foods to nourish your body and taste buds, but we also have Registered Dietitians on staff who can meet with any individual or group wherever they may find themselves on their health journey. Services include one-on-one consultations, personalized meal plans, and more!
Information included does not constitute medical advice and should only be used as a general recommendation for a healthy, balanced diet and lifestyle. Reasor’s Registered Dietitians’ opinions and recommendations are their own; they are not paid to endorse any products or services.