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Healthy Lifestyle - How to Make a Healthy Lifestyle Changes

Updated on April 8, 2013
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Introduction:

Changing ones lifestyle can be hard, and confusing sometimes. Especially when we are trying to change our food habits. If one grows up with unhealthy eating habits, it's very hard to suddenly wake up one day and try to reverse them. Everything around us is a temptation, from million dollar TV ads, to food in our houses. If we go out we see food everywhere; junk-food-lane with its big signs calling you to come and have a bite, to the junk food aisle at the supermarket.

One has to have a mountain of self control to stick to any kind of healthy lifestyle. Here are some tips that will help you to make an easy transition, or at least make things easier to make that transition.

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Focus On

First step toward making that transition toward healthy lifestyle is to change things at home. For a healthy lifestyle the changes should be made for the whole family rather then just one person. It makes it easier to follow through when everyone is involved, and concerned about their health. There are two ways of doing this, one is to go gradually, which I find does not work with lots of people where food is concerned. Gradually changing your eating habits with all the tempting stuff around you, will gradually bring you back to your old eating habits!
The other one is to go cold turkey! A complete change, take everything out of sight and out of mind....

The first place to focus on is the kitchen!
Kitchen tends to be the master storage of all junk food in the house. So the first thing we will do is go into the kitchen and clean it out! Places where food is kept have to be reexamined and sorted out.
Go to the refrigerator first; take out everything and dump them on your kitchen table. Now you can clearly see what was hidden in there. Take the items that are high in fat content and calories and put them on one side of the table. The things with no fat, or low calories,on the other side. Things like fruits, veggies, lean meat, fat free yogurt, milk, cheese, etc. on the lean side. Then the soda, butter, fatty meat, processed food, cakes, cookies, cream, whole milk, etc. on the other side. Here you can tell what was your diet like, if your table seems heavier on the fatty side then you know your eating habits weren't up to par! Do the same with your freezer. Take out all that frozen pizzas, hotdogs, processed chicken nuggets, etc.

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Sort It Out!

If you're not sure which foods belong on which side, that's ok. That's also probably where the problem started in the first place! The easiest thing to do is to check the nutrition label. Large percentages of sodium, calories and fat belong on the bad side, while things high in fiber, protein and vitamins can stay. You do have to be careful though; healthy things like nuts and yogurt are often high in fat and calories. So if you're going to be really careful with your new diet, always check the ingredients. Words like hydrogenated or complex chemicals with a dozen different prefixes and suffixes are things that can't be broken down by our bodies, so those are the fats that stick. It might be good to lean toward items labeled "natural" or "organic", but don't rely on that alone. Always check the ingredients and familiarize yourself with the bad fats and preservatives. In no time, you'll be able to tell how bad something is for you just by looking at it!

Take everything from the fatty side and put them in a cardboard box, or bags, and take the out of the house! Do whatever you want to do with them, throw in the garbage, give them to the neighbors, donate to a food pantry, homeless center, anything..... But don't bring it back in the house!
Next place to raid are the cupboards in the kitchen where you usually keep the twinkies, cookies, chip bags, chocolates, and all the junk foods. Also go through your cupboards where you keep can foods. There are lots of soups, luncheon meats, etc in can that are high in fat, calories, and incredibly high sodium content.

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Some Suggestion:


Your freezer should be stocked with lean meats, fish, veggies, home made frozen yogurt, etc. your refrigerator should have more veggies, salad, low or skim milk, yogurt, cheese, fruits, etc. Your cupboards should have more herbs, and spices, healthy snacks such as nuts, or home made granola bars, pop corn, can tuna, can beans (rinse before you prepare), etc.
Now that your kitchen has almost next to nothing, let's get some healthy food in here.

So, the Second thing to focus on is the Shopping List:
What will help you stick to your healthy lifestyle is how you shop for food at the stores, and how you think when you are there. Be Prepared: best thing to do before you go grocery shopping is to have a shopping list with you. Make a list at home before you go. One think that can help you prepare your shopping list is to have a menu prepared for the week, or two. Make a list with that and then go shopping. Stick to your list and don't grab things that are tempting. Avoid SALES!! There can be hazardous to your health! We tend to buy more when things are on sale, and buy the wrong things. If there are things on sale that are healthy then go ahead get few extra items. Skip the aisles that have all the junk food, soda, chocolate, etc.

Junk Food
Junk Food | Source

Third And The Conclusion

Third thing to focus on is Eating out:

Quick stop at a fast food joint has to stop! These are the biggest killer to any healthy lifestyle. If you are one of those people who get a sudden hunger attack while driving back from work, or the gym, then keep some nuts, or trail mix, or healthy crackers, in you car and munch on them rather then stopping at a fast food restaurant. Believe me when you think you are just eating a small burger, or just the fries, you are actually eating the almost an equal amount of fat and calories of a big healthy meal! So Avoid it!
Going out to eat with family and friend does not have to stop. But as you are changing your lifestyle that means also changing what you eat outside. Choose restaurants that provides a healthy menu. Or get your mind set that you don't have to eat a five course meal, a nice salad with chicken, or tuna, will do. It's all about self control.

We have cover the changes in our eating habits, and the next thing is to incorporate exercise to your daily routine. This you CAN start gradually at your level and build up as you go.

Sticking to a healthy lifestyle takes lot of motivation, courage, and hard work. There will be days that you are tempted to eat something that you shouldn't, or you do sneak in a burger on the way home, or eat some potato chips with your friends, it should not stop you from continuing with your plan. The motto is to never give up, and you will see the benefit of you hard work when you start feeling healthy and see your energy level go up.

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    • LaThing profile image
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      LaThing 5 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      I am so glad I could be of help. I had to change my lifestyle in the beginning of this year, and we are still keeping it up. Feeling is great! Thanks for your visit.... :)

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I'm in the process of doing this right now. Following many of your suggestions and this is a great hub with some very practical wisdom.

    • LaThing profile image
      Author

      LaThing 5 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Thank you Rajan for your comment, and your visit! It's good to see you here :)

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 5 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      I like how you progress step by step starting with the fridge and progress to other things. Great ideas.

      Voted up and useful.

    • LaThing profile image
      Author

      LaThing 5 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Thanks Robert, for your visit and your comment! Appreciate it :)

    • Robert Erich profile image

      Robert Erich 5 years ago from California

      Great suggestions! I like the idea of simply reading the label before buying. That can make a huge difference. Voted up and shared.

    • LaThing profile image
      Author

      LaThing 5 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      I guess you start realizing that as you get older. Have to start somewhere! Thanks for your visit and comment, Penlady. Appreciate it.....

    • penlady profile image

      penlady 5 years ago from Sacramento, CA

      Excellent article and at an appropriate time. We all could stand to make some lifestyle changes for the sake of our health. Great hub.

    • LaThing profile image
      Author

      LaThing 5 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Thanks for reading, and your comment..... See you around :)

    • mecheshier profile image

      mecheshier 5 years ago

      Great Hub! Staying healthy is a lifelong journey and commitment. Inspirations like your Hub are always needed.

    • LaThing profile image
      Author

      LaThing 5 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Quite true... For some, there is no choice, either you have food, or you don't! Pretty sad alright!

      Thanks for the comment, and the reminder.

    • katyzzz profile image

      katyzzz 5 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      Good advice here and needed by so very many, unlike the times when people barely had enough to eat, but for some it's still like that, sadly.

    • LaThing profile image
      Author

      LaThing 5 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Yes, this is just a start up toward a healthy lifestyle. There is so much to do to stick to that!

      Thanks for your vote, and visit :)

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 5 years ago from United States

      Very thorough hub on making healthier choices. Your method is a good way to start if you haven't been making already been making changes. Up and useful!

    • LaThing profile image
      Author

      LaThing 5 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Thanks for your vote and comment.... Appreciate it! :)

    • profile image

      kelleyward 5 years ago

      Hi LaThing, Thanks for the great tips on healthy eating! I also enjoyed the pictures. Voted up and useful, Take care, Kelley

    • LaThing profile image
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      LaThing 5 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      @Lord, I hope so! Yes, excerise is also very important and goes hand, in hand with eating habits.

      Thanks for your visit, and sharing, truly appreciate it :)

    • Lord De Cross profile image

      Joseph De Cross 5 years ago

      Excellent hub! You are saving some lives in the long run my friend LA! LIFESTYLES and healthy choices, along with a good excercise can make a difference! Thanks for sharing!~

      LORD

    • LaThing profile image
      Author

      LaThing 5 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Dear MizBe, I wish my husband cooked! He wants to sometime, but it's not something that anyone of us could eat, lol! So, we have divided our duties, he goes to work and earns, and I stay home and cook :)

      Yes, with food allergies you have to be careful, and you don't have that many choices. Thanks for your comment and for visiting us. Wish you all the best :)

      Like that 'green beans wasn't a dirty word' .... Hahaha

    • MizBejabbers profile image

      MizBejabbers 5 years ago

      Some good thoughts! At our house we go through phases of eating healthy, then falling off the wagon. If I were in control of the kitchen I might be able to keep a better account of what we eat. My husband is the world's best cook, but he can do evil things with food. His baked beans are so good they are to die for. Literally! You don't want to know what he puts in them! It took me 25 years to convince him that "green beans" wasn't a dirty word, now he loves them.

      On a serious note, I have so many food allergies that I have to eat what doesn't make me sick whether or not it is healthy. The preservatives in processed foods are a killer for me, and I'm allergic to dairy of any kind. My husband discovered hamburger helper and fed it to me for a week, then he wanted to know why I got sick.

    • LaThing profile image
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      LaThing 5 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      @BeyondMax, baked beans here in the US are pretty different than the one that are in England. English ones are in tomato sauce, and the one here are made with molasses and has bacon in them. You can find the vegetarian one - less fat. Not sure what kind is the Aussie beans! Or do they even have such a thing called Aussie Beans?! :)

      @Thussays, you are right, you do loose a lot of nutrition in can food.... I try to avoid can food whenever I can, but sometimes for a quick salad or snack I do use beans, or pineapples from the can. Thanks for your visit and comment.

    • ThussaysNanaMarie profile image

      ThussaysNanaMarie 5 years ago from In my oyster

      Spare a thought for how food is canned. When you add the preservatives etc I wonder if the nutritious content can compare.

    • BeyondMax profile image

      BeyondMax 5 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      Oh, gosh... so baked beans are actually the evil ones? That's a revelation. And I just thought for a minute I have a healthy straw in them (they are tasty monsters)... Then I should hang more from the rafters, poor little tail.

    • LaThing profile image
      Author

      LaThing 5 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Lol, for some reason you don't sound like someone who needs to get healthy quick..... Falling from the sky, swinging on trees, jumping all over the place, getting tangled....... You are getting lot of excerise there....... That's how I look at you little guy, :) you get the idea, right?

      Can beans: we have the ones that are not in a sauce but in water with salt, and other things, so I prefer to wash out the excess salt and preservatives. Unless you buy the baked beans which do have lot of fat in them.... Thanks for your visit, always a pleasure. :)

    • BeyondMax profile image

      BeyondMax 5 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      That's an awesome idea for the hub! Very informative and I like it that it supports your other hub with the menu planner - it is a clever tie up, makes life easier!

      "...Take out all that frozen pizzas, hotdogs, processed chicken nuggets, etc..." Ok. Now I'm seriously scared. Are you by any chance spying on my fridge? o_0 Like you said, my problem is - I don't quite grasp the thingy with fats, calories etc. and if I start checking it in the shop, I'm sure I'll have to bring overnight sleeping bag and tent (though, they won't allow me to camp at the store, right?)... All I know that food that marked "low fat" or "light" is not tasty at all. But health is more important. I do love canned tuna and beans (Q - why there is a need to rinse beans out of a can, they usually come with sauce of some kind?). Anyway, sorry for the personal rant, I am totally at war with myself, raised on out and junk food, have to gradually work on it and it helps when things are laid out clearly!

    • LaThing profile image
      Author

      LaThing 5 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      @christin, that's good to hear. Once we start doing it regularly, it doesn't seem so hard after that, right? Thanks for your visit, appreciate it :)

      @Uzma, thank you for your comment and vote. Appreciate your sharing it too. :)

    • uzma shaheen profile image

      Uzma Shaheen Bhatti 5 years ago from Lahore,Pakistan

      very interesting and informative hub. you are right fast foods are greatest killer,a small burger can ruine all your efforts of work out.thanks for sharing it.voting up.

    • christin53 profile image

      Ann-Christin 5 years ago from UK

      Very good hub. A lot of this I regularly do like sorting kitchen cupboards and fridges. I stay away from fast food places too expensive. I also try to walk everywhere just means allowing a little extra time.

    • LaThing profile image
      Author

      LaThing 5 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Good for you! I had a similar experience, recently mine went down too, after changing my eating habit, and walking everyday.

      Thank you for visiting and your comment, appreciate it!

    • ThussaysNanaMarie profile image

      ThussaysNanaMarie 5 years ago from In my oyster

      Well said! Very practical and supportive. Keep it up.

      I embarked on changing my lifestyle when my cholesterol went up. I was told after an interview that I had a 5% chance of a heart attack. Once the cholesterol was declared raised I certainly was not going to go on Statin or any other medication for personal reasons, so I embarked on an exercise regime -keep fit for one hour a week. By the next blood test a year later my cholesterol had dropped by 1 from 6.8 to 5.8. for the first time in 6 years. All I included in my life style was the keep fit class for one hour a week, 50 weeks a year.