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Resolution recap

Clare Jones highlights ways to stay healthy, long-term

Published on January 12th 2011.

Resolution recap

January 2011 – A healthier New Year?
After the Christmas orgy of food and drink all the magazines have been filled with advice on how we should improve ourselves – be better, smarter, fitter, slimmer for 2011.

While this may help to sell magazines and fulfil our need for a little self-restraint after all that self-indulgence, often any changes we make are short-lived as, once we get back to work, they become too impractical to sustain.

So how can we incorporate healthy changes long-term and what changes are likely to really make a difference?

Take it slowly
Rome wasn’t built in a day, as the saying goes, so don’t make life hard for yourself by implementing a rigorous new regime overnight. Instead make small, gradual changes that are much easier to stick to. How about one new thing per week?

Eat real food
The ‘vita’ in vitamins means ‘life’ and the reason that vitamins are so important is that they are essential to life. The best way to get the vitamins we need is to eat a varied diet of fresh, unprocessed foods. Avoid packaged foods with long, unpronounceable, chemical-sounding names – these are not foods our bodies evolved with and are often lacking in the vitamins and minerals we need to metabolise them. Instead, choose a variety of brightly coloured fruits and vegetables, ideally fresh but use frozen if you’re short of time.

Top 5 tips for a healthier lifestyle

- Don’t go on a diet
Stop worrying about calories (see post-Christmas diet dilemmas article here), don’t skip meals but eat moderately at regular intervals throughout the day.

- Eat naturally
Avoid highly processed food (and drinks) and instead choose foods that pack a nutritional punch, for example:
- Eggs for breakfast – boiled, poached or scrambled
- Raw nuts and/or fruit for snacking
- A large salad with your evening meal
- Fresh juice or warm water with a slice of lemon.

- Get cooking
If you’re a novice, buy yourself something straightforward like a student cookbook – ideally with pictures so you can see what it’s meant to look like; more advanced cooks may want to liven up their repertoire with some new recipes. There are lots of books aimed at people with busy lifestyles, such as Jamie Oliver’s new book, filled with menu plans that can be completed in 30 minutes.

- Take time to eat
Sit down, relax and enjoy your food (even the snacks). Follow the example of The Slow Food Movement - an organisation started in Italy that celebrates the pleasure of enjoying good food and a slower pace of life.

- Add a little exercise
Don’t feel that you have to spend hours slogging at the gym – just incorporate a little extra activity doing something you enjoy. Get out and about, enjoy the fresh air on a regular basis – feel the sun (or rain) on your face.

The advice given here is not intended to replace medical advice. Always consult your GP if you are concerned about your health.

Clare Jones, BA(Hons), Dip ION, mBANT
Nutritional Therapy 07985 166606.

If you would like to make an appointment for a personal nutrition consultation with Clare, please contact her on the above number or visit Clare’s website: www.clarejones-nutrition.co.uk

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