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New Year Healthy Eating: January 1, 2019

New Year, new you! But health experts say if you want to be successful with your New Year’s resolutions there are a few things you should stop doing.  “Stop dieting. Research has shown that it does not work. The best thing to do instead of dieting is really to practice the 80/20 rule. No matter what eating plan you decide to do, 80 percent of the time you’re following it, and 20 percent of the time you’re allowing yourself those indulgences,” said Leigha Messner, clinical dietitian with Lee Health.

Before you commit to your New Year’s resolution make sure it’s realistic.  “If you automatically tell yourself you can’t, or you won’t, or you’re not going to, you will end up actually craving those things and indulging maybe even more,” said Messner.

When making a plan to live a healthier lifestyle, make small changes that you can stick to. It’s also a good idea to make a list of all the reasons why you’re making resolutions.  “If we can kind of focus on just something that we would like to live with, and the habits that we can live with and our values throughout the year, that can actually set you up for more success,” she said.

Planning your meals and eating more mindfully are small changes that can make a big difference throughout the year.  “When you’re little, you just eat when you’re hungry, and you stop when you’re full, so if you can just kind of get back into our mindset of ‘Am I even hungry? Am I full,” said Messner.

It’s also a good idea to set a time-frame on each resolution to keep you focused on accomplishing it.  “Instead of the whole year, let’s focus on the month. So maybe in January, you’re abstaining from alcohol and added sugar, and maybe in February you’re focusing more on getting those 10,000 steps in, or a weight goal for you, and maybe in March it’s focusing on more fruits and vegetables,” she said.

Small, realistic, changes can help your New Year’s resolutions be successful and help to improve your overall health.

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