Common Sense Healthy Habits

healthy habits

We all know that everyone needs to develop healthy diet and exercise habits. But with an abundance of diet products and exercise regimes that are adopting names like “body boot camp,” it’s difficult to not get discouraged. So instead of purchasing expensive products with ingredients that are impossible to pronounce, it’s time to turn to – common sense. As with any alteration to your diet and exercise plan, you should consult your doctor. Here are a few tips that can have you feeling healthier, happier, and you don’t have to spend a great deal of money.


  1. Cut out empty calories. Try switching to non-fat half and half and stevia (a plant-based sweetener with zero calories) in your morning coffee. Cut out sodas and replace with water and add a little lemon juice for flavor. Replace mayonnaise, salad dressings, and sour cream with nonfat, strained yogurt-based condiments.
  2. The food pyramid is there for a reason. Make sure each of your meals includes at least one fresh fruit or lightly cooked vegetable and a source of heart-healthy protein like fish, edamame, or tofu. Exercise portion control by eating your meals off a salad plate.
  3. Don’t deny yourself snacks. But switch out that afternoon candy bar with fresh fruit and yogurt, or a bowl of whole-grain cereal with skim milk.
  4. Pick two meals out of the week to “splurge.” Knowing that a couple of times a week you can have pizza or a piece of chocolate cake can help control your cravings during the rest of the week. Plus, you deserve to treat yourself.
  5. Learn to listen to your body. If you are hungry, grab a healthy snack. If you are stressed or upset, allow yourself to deal with your emotions before grabbing the ice cream container. If you absolutely must have comfort food, measure out a serving instead of eating directly out of the container.


  1. There is no need for a personal trainer or a pricey gym membership if you can’t afford it. There is a huge selection of workout DVDs that are fun, and allow you to work out in the comfort of your own home. Invest in several different ones so that you can change up your routine to avoid boredom.
  2. Try to be active for at least twenty to thirty minutes a day. Whether you walk your dog in the evening, or take a brisk walk during your lunch break – make time to move around, especially if you have a desk job.
  3. Not one for traditional workouts? Try making a mix of dance music (include at least five songs) and dance around your house. It’s fun and will get your heart rate going.
  4. Remember that stretching, aerobics, and strength-training make for a well-rounded workout so try to incorporate all three during the week.
  5. Vary your exercises to avoid burnout and to keep your body working at its best.
  6. If an exercise causes you pain – don’t do it.
  7. Try the buddy system. Having a friend exercise with you can be more fun and it can help keep you motivated.

A nourishing diet and exercise routine can help you look and feel your best. Healthy habits are a conscious effort, but they can soon become second-nature. Remember everybody is different and only you can determine what works best for your body. Use a little common sense and you can start implementing healthier habits into your lifestyle for a noticeable difference in body and mind.

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