New Year, new you. This is a statement that’s often used as we make resolutions for ourselves in a new year. But just how easy is it to maintain those resolutions? According to U.S. News, approximately 80 percent of New Year’s resolutions fail by the second week of February. Why is this statistic so high? It’s likely due to the fact that we often set too many goals to focus on while we should be setting smaller, more attainable goals. This is especially true when it comes to making lifestyle changes like losing weight or exercising more.
Jaclyn Capalbo, dietitian with Mountainside Medical Center, is sharing ways in which you can maintain a healthy weight and stay on track with your health goals.
1) Eat frequently. Eating three small meals and one or two snacks will keep your metabolism going throughout the day and keep you feeling more satisfied. Avoid going long periods of time without eating as this can lead to unhealthy food choices and consuming larger portions later on in the day.
2) Drink plenty of water. On average, we need eight to 10 cups of fluid on a daily basis. Sometimes our bodies think we are hungry when we are actually just thirsty. Always keep a water bottle with you to remind yourself to sip throughout the day. You can also change it up by flavoring your water with infused fruits or freshly squeezed lemon.
3) Consume at least two servings of fruit and three servings of vegetables per day. Not only do these foods provide fiber to keep you feeling full, they are nutritious and are low in calories.
4) Get moving and exercise regularly. According to the Department of Health and Human Services, adults should get two and a half to five hours of moderate-intensity physical activity per week or 15 minutes to two and a half hours of vigorous-intensity physical activity per week. Even regular walking can help keep the unwanted pounds off.
5) Replace sugar-sweetened beverages like fruit juices and sodas with non-caloric beverages such as flavored waters or herbal teas.
6) Cut back on the sweets. Desserts can lead to excess calories due to their high sugar and fat content. Don’t deprive yourself completely. If you are craving a piece of cake or ice cream, eat a small portion and savor every bite. However, remember these foods should be consumed in moderation and not daily.
7) Choose leaner proteins. Trim the fat around the edges of meat and remove the skin from poultry. When purchasing ground turkey or beef, look for the option that is 90-97 percent lean.
8) Keep a daily log. Tracking your food/fluid intake and exercise will help you hold yourself accountable to stay on track. Consistently tracking is a good way to see patterns and problem areas in your daily routine so you can make appropriate dietary changes.