It is that time of the year when we start to hear about New Year's Resolutions. People often make crazy commitment's to things that they rarely continue to do. Well, I believe in everything in moderation. Yes you have to aim to have a good, healthy diet most of the time, but you also need the occasional treat. A little of what you fancy does you good now and again. Here are my top ten tips for staying healthy in 2015.
1. Cut back on your sugar intake. Needless to say we all know that too much sugar is bad for you and that it can lead to all sorts of negative health issues, including diabetes.
2. Try to reduce your salt content. Do not add extra salt to your meals at the table. Keep processed foods to a minimum as they often have a high salt content. Try to cook meals from scratch.
3. Aim to reduce your fat intake. Try to avoid saturated fats as these lead to heart attacks, stroke and an increase in weight. Keep butter off the table.
4. Watch your portion sizes. Maybe even use a smaller plate until you get used to smaller portions. Try not to have seconds. I know that this is all very hard after Christmas, but believe me, it will be worth it in the long run.
5. Try to switch to complex carbohydrates. For example brown bread, brown rice, and wholegrain pasta. These are much better for you and give you sustained energy over longer periods.
6. Drink more water. Aim for at least 8 glasses of water a day. Always have a bottle of water with you and you just might be surprised how much of it you actually drink.
7. Exercise for a half an hour every day. Pick something that you really like doing. I find walking is great. It does not have to be very strenuous but your body will thank you for it.
8. Reduce stress in your life and aim to be happy. I believe that stress and unhappiness have a huge negative effect on on health. Adjust your work life balance if necessary. Let go of the past, do not carry negativity with you, do not have regrets and mend any bridges that may be upsetting you.
9. Eat more fruit and vegetables. They are good for you and can be great fun experimenting with. Try new varieties and recipes to make meals interesting.
10. Eat more fish. Buy fresh local fish when you can, and also enjoy oily fish like mackerel, tuna and salmon when they are in season.
I do believe that making a few simple changes to your diet can have a huge positive impact on your health. A high fibre, low fat diet with moderate exercise and positive thoughts will get you through anything. You will feel strong and energised. As the new year is almost upon us, why don't you decide to make some changes to you lifestyle and reap the rewards in 2015. :-) xxx
A photo of me out rowing with some friends in Castletownbere Harbour. Healthy and happy in my hometown.