Top Ten Tuesday: Little Ways to Be Healthier

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Little Ways to Be Healthier | Little Flecks of Gold

A lot of the time, people, myself included, get in the mindset of thinking that being healthy is a big endeavor. While health is an important aspect of your life, it really doesn't take a whole lot to be healthier. Little things, like drinking more water, exercising a little more or making simple food swaps can make a world of difference. Here are my favorite ways to be just a little bit healthier:
Drink more water.
I know this has been said so many times, but I honestly feel like drinking enough water is the best thing you can do for your health. I like my Camelbak Eddy Water Bottle because the straw helps me drink more water (weird, but true.)

Blend a green smoothie. 
I have a really hard time eating enough vegetables. However, I end up consuming a lot of vegetables when I make green smoothies, or any smoothies with vegetables (I also like making pumpkin smoothies and this Orange Carrot Karma copycat.)
Cut back on sugar.
While some sugar in your diet is good, too much has a negative effect on your health. While you don't need to give up sugar completely, there are easy ways to reduce sugar in the things you eat. I substitute some of the sugar in baking with Stevia. You can also usually reduce the sugar content overall in your foods.
Make baking substitutions. 
Just like replacing sugar in recipes, you can also make substitutes for fat and oil. You can replace all or part of the butter, eggs or oil in a recipe with pumpkin, applesauce or bananas. (While these ingredients aren't necessarily bad for you, the substitutions have  more nutrients and less saturated fat and cholesterol.)
Switch to whole-grain.
Whole grain flour has more fiber, vitamins and minerals than white flour and the transition between the two is relatively easy (I've come to prefer the taste of whole-grains.)

There are two healthy foods I really had to train myself to like: oatmeal and eggs. I experimented with overnight oats and egg muffins, and played around with how to pair both foods. I found out oatmeal is a lot better with almond milk instead of water, and I especially like chocolate chips in mine. I like my eggs with turmeric and I also like to make spinach omelettes.
Control your portions.
Regardless of how good the food you're eating is for you, if you're eating too much, it's not healthy. My favorite way to make sure I'm eating proper amounts of food is to measure a serving size into each Ziploc bag. This also makes food more portable so you can have healthy options on the go.

Start walking.
Walking is an easy way to get exercise and it's pretty functional too. If you walk somewhere you would usually drive, you're not taking a lot of extra time out of your day to exercise. Plus, it's easy, anyone can do it and you don't need any equipment!

Weight train.
You can gain great health benefits just by weight training twenty minutes three times a week (that's only .5% of your time!) In addition to the physical benefits of looking more toned, you'll also be stronger, which will make daily tasks, like bringing your groceries inside, seem that much easier.

Get some sleep.
Even though the research on sleep is overwhelming, many people still don't get enough. Aim for at least seven hours a night for more energy throughout your day.

Those are my favorite little ways to stay healthy! What are your's?

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