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Healthy Eating – You Can Do It
By Laura Crooks, R.N.

Many people have “healthy eating” as a goal, but what does that mean? Eating healthier can mean any number of things, and usually something different to everyone. There is no one right definition, but defining what you mean will help you achieve it.
As with any destination, if you are not clear about where you are going it is hard to know when you have arrived. Being clear about your goal helps you know what to do and when you have done it.
Eating well might mean changing what, why, or how you eat. It could mean increasing:
• fiber
• antioxidants
• variety
• nutrients
• omega 3 fats
• fruits and vegetables
• meal planning
• cooking at home
It could also mean decreasing:
• calories
• portion sizes
• processed foods
• fats
• picking and mindless munching
• take out
• refined carbs
• emotional eating
Healthy eating could also mean:
• getting enough calories
• eating breakfast
• eating often enough
• making better snack choices
• balancing protein with vegetables and fruits
• sitting at a table to eat
• eating mindfully or purposefully
• improving the quality of your food
• eating sustainably
• eating only when hungry
• eating locally and seasonally
• eating less food overall
Healthy eating is a flexible concept that changes as you change; there is ongoing research about food and our eating habits change over time. Get very specific about what you mean. After you clarify your meaning of “healthy eating”, determine some small steps you can take this week. For example: eating more vegetables might mean you start by going to the grocery store to see how many vegetable options there are for you to try. Then you might need to research recipes: ask friends, do an internet search, read cookbooks. This is all before you even buy a new vegetable. And you may need to try it several times and prepared several different ways before you officially decide to like it or not.
Once you decide exactly what healthy eating means to you, you are better able to make clear and specific goals … and achieve them!
Laura Crooks, certified wellness coach, can be reached at (412) 596-9516 or Laura@YouBloomWellness.com or visit www.YouBloomWellness.com

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