Baby steps

by Khushboo on April 22, 2013

Despite this post’s title & the fact that everyone is either getting married or pregnant, this post has nothing to do with babies ;).   The other day, my buddy Jannat posted a link on my Facebook wall on 27 Easy Ways to Eat Healthier. Some of my favorite swaps listed include:

  • Cut the fat in dip way down by using Greek yogurt instead of sour cream
  • Instead of drinking soda, add cucumber, lemon or mint to seltzer
  • Upgrade sandwiches by spreading them with avocado instead of mayo
photo 1

Chicken Avocado Tartine

Along with providing a number great ideas, I love that it focuses on promoting small, everyday changes we can make to boost our diet & overall wellbeing without giving up a dish completely.   It busts the notion that leading a healthier lifestyle boils down to deprivation & a complete lifestyle overhaul.  Because we ‘re likely to mentally respond better when we view health with a positive approach, why not use healthy living as an opportunity to INCORPORATE new habits?  Even making one or two small changes/add-ins can make a world of difference to our health.  The options are both EASY & infinite and some of my favorite include:

  • Move daily for 30 minutes: Nobody’s asking you to run a marathon or bench press your body weight.  Walk, dance, jump-rope, …it all counts!

gym pants

  • Get a good night’s sleep
  • Write it down: Whether it’s big or small, writing down all the tasks in your mind frees up brainpower to actually get things done
  • Drink at least 1.5 litres water daily: I find that my water intake inevitably increases when I have a bottle/glass of H2O next to me at all times.

photo 2

  • Add in some vegetables: Even if you’re not overly enthusiastic about veggies, there has to be at least a couple you don’t mind eating.  From cancer to diabetes, weight control, blood pressure, or natural detoxification, don’t ever underestimate the potency of veggies.
  • Eat breakfast to regulate your sugar levels and wake up your metabolism.  Even if you don’t have much of an appetite in the morning, eat some fruit, grab some yogurt, or toast up a slice of wholegrain bread.
  • Don’t sweat it: Feel like you have gone off track?  Can’t shake off that sluggish feeling?  The good news is that tomorrow is a brand new opportunity to do it right.

a-year-from-now

Reaping the benefits of a healthy life doesn’t mean changing up your lifestyle completely or eating/doing things you don’t want to.  Just focus on all the little changes & add-ins you can make on a daily basis….together they will make a big difference mentally, physically and emotionally.

What “healthy” habit(s) do you practice regularly?

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{ 38 comments… read them below or add one }

Jess April 22, 2013 at 2:38 pm

Love this post! The little things add up quickly and make a surprising difference. My tip would be walk rather then drive whenever you can. It is healthier, better for the environment and leaves you feeling good!

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Khushboo April 22, 2013 at 9:23 pm

Great tip about walking when possible- it’s a great way of fitting exercise into your day-to-day activities!

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z @ kickingkilos April 22, 2013 at 3:39 pm

I have not eaten white bread in a long time. Maybe when I was on a vacation in Jan, but not since then.
B.fast is my fav meal. So many people(including my hubs) wint eat b.fast.
It keeps me full, and the day goes well ;).

Great post, Khushboo.
Thanks for all the meal plans and the your faith in me.
You go girl.♥

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z @ kickingkilos April 22, 2013 at 3:42 pm

wint-wont*

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Khushboo April 22, 2013 at 9:24 pm

Breakfast is my favorite meal too- best motivation to get out of bed :)!

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Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin April 22, 2013 at 4:44 pm

I think small steps are definitely the best way to make lifestyle changes – it’s so much less intimidating than making a total lifestyle overhaul. I hope to use that kind of small steps approach with my future clients!

Some of my favourite small changes that I used when I got healthy were eating whole wheat instead of white bread, trading sugary flavoured lattes for coffee or tea, and starting my meals with salads.

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Khushboo April 22, 2013 at 9:26 pm

Great tip about opting for coffee or tea in place of flavored lattes…at least if you’re drinking the former on a daily basis!

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Picky Nicky April 22, 2013 at 4:50 pm

I especially love the idea of moving 30 minutes daily! 🙂 Too many people go from car to elevator to office and back to their sofa
Dancing for 30 minutes when you get home can really boost your mood 🙂 Or going for a walk during lunch!

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Khushboo April 22, 2013 at 9:28 pm

Especially in a city like Mumbai, life can be very sedentary if you don’t make a conscious effort to stay active!

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Tara @ Sweat like a Pig April 22, 2013 at 5:18 pm

I have only recently started to put mayo on everything – what a time to develop this bad habit!! I will have to try this new avocado idea 🙂

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Khushboo April 22, 2013 at 9:28 pm

Ohh you have to try avo in place of mayo ASAP…I know you will love it :)!

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Sara @ Nourish and Flourish April 23, 2013 at 4:27 am

Or just eat them together like I do! ;-p Turkey, mayo, and avocado/guacamole is amazing!

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Khushboo April 23, 2013 at 10:45 am

Before I went to boarding school in freshman year (high school), I never ate breakfast…no wonder all I seemed to crave was sugar!

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Sam @ Better With Sprinkles April 22, 2013 at 5:47 pm

Small steps are definitely the best approach – so much less intimidating/daunting!

I refuse to skip breakfast (or umm, any meal), drink water like it’s my job, vegetables make a daily appearance in my diet (95% of the time) and I’m really good at sleeping 😉 All important things for my health!

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Khushboo April 22, 2013 at 9:29 pm

Hahah sleeping tends to be forte too…and I kinad love it :)!

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Amanda @ .running with spoons. April 22, 2013 at 5:49 pm

😆 I couldn’t help but get a big laugh out of your intro – it really does feel like everyone is either married or pregnant these days…. but maybe I just tend to notice it more because I’m not in either camp.

I love the idea of making small, sustainable changes to adopt a healthier lifestyle. I used to fall for al sorts of fad diets back in the day and get all gung-ho about them for a week or two before going back to my bad habits. Why? Because the changes were just too extreme and not possible for me to maintain in the long run. These days I put a lot less pressure on myself and try to keep things more balanced. I do my best to stay active and go for at least a 30 minute walk each day. I drink my water. I don’t skip meals. I don’t deprive myself of treats. I get my sleep…. Granted, it’s not always perfect, but not stressing about it is another one of my healthy habits 😉

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Khushboo April 22, 2013 at 9:31 pm

I love that you added about not stressing being important to your health too…some days I probably less healthy than I “should” be but beating myself up is only going to increase my mental stress- no bueno!

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Hannah @ CleanEatingVeggieGirl April 22, 2013 at 7:08 pm

Adding avocado to sandwiches is NO problem for me!! 😉 I love it!

I really like the “don’t sweat it” step. So, so important for all of us to remember!

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Khushboo April 22, 2013 at 9:32 pm

The more avocado the better :)!

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dixya@food, pleasure, and health April 22, 2013 at 7:56 pm

even though these tips sounds so simple- if practiced daily, it really changes your habits in a week or so 🙂 I have started to eat slowly and savor each bite instead of gobbling my food down.

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Khushboo April 22, 2013 at 9:32 pm

Along with helping you get more in tune with your hunger signals, I bet savoring each bite has made food taste THAT much better :)!

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Alex @ therunwithin April 22, 2013 at 8:23 pm

I need to get more into avocado, I haven’t bought one in ages but i do love it. I guess I just worry it will go bad before i use it

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Khushboo April 22, 2013 at 9:33 pm

Next time you slice open an avocado, keep the stone in- it helps keep it fresher for longer!

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Parita @ myinnershakti April 22, 2013 at 9:31 pm

I’m a believer in small steps as well. The little things certainly add up.

The healthy habits I follow on a daily basis are to 1. eat breakfast no matter what and 2. drink as much water as possible. 🙂

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Khushboo April 23, 2013 at 10:42 am

I refuse to go without breakfast too…even if it’s just some fruit!

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honeywhatscooking April 23, 2013 at 2:05 am

I try and eat 1 super healthy meal a day, it’s hard to avoid Indian food dinner time, so for lunch I make a conscious decision to eat well. I drink water. I have to remind myself. I eat dark chocolate every night if I don’t have a cupcake. And I walk for about 30 mins a day, minimum!

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Khushboo April 23, 2013 at 10:43 am

Do you cook Indian food at home every night yourself?? Impressive!

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Meghan@Clean Eat Fast Feets April 23, 2013 at 4:15 am

The little things do make such a difference and it’s about the little things as opposed to outright restriction.
I take the stairs ever day as opposed to the escalators. I also park far away in parking lots so I can get extra steps in.

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Khushboo April 23, 2013 at 10:44 am

Both are great ways to get some extra movement, especially parking farther away!

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Sara @ Nourish and Flourish April 23, 2013 at 4:45 am

Aww, bummer! I was hoping you had some exciting news to share! 😉

These are all great tips! I couldn’t agree with you more that the key to making lifestyle change a manageable and tolerable process lies in taking small steps. I spent years trying to lose weight, gain weight, increase energy etc. etc. by using the “cold turkey” approach. Usually my new habits would last a few days–or a weeks, if I was lucky–but then I’d crash hard, and return to my old lifestyle. Those experiences would leave me feeling like a failure, which made “picking up the pieces” that much harder! It wasn’t until I realized that I had to be patient, and implement small changes into my routine, that my new habits actually began to stick permanently.

Some everyday healthy habits I practice regularly include eating breakfast (I never ate it during high school, but I couldn’t imagine a morning without it now!), taking daily walks (in Washington DC, I don’t have to schedule these, because I get almost everywhere by foot or public transportation, but in Boise I have to use my car more often, so I make sure to squeeze in a 20-30 minute leisure walk in the afternoons), and fruit/veggies in *most* meals. The habit I need to work on? Sleep! I’m a chronic night owl, but still get up early.. I’m constantly sleep deprived!

Hope you’re having a wonderful Monday! <3 xoxo

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P April 23, 2013 at 5:09 am

I like the avocado idea! I’m so bad at getting the recommended water intake, but drinking tea helps!

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Khushboo April 23, 2013 at 10:47 am

Drinking tea…soup…it all counts :)!

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Brittany April 23, 2013 at 10:20 pm

I’m with you on the water, I drink SO much more when I make sure to have water by me at all times. This is why I bring my mason jars (the 32 oz ones) everywhere I go. HA! Great tips!! I love em all!

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Khushboo April 24, 2013 at 7:52 am

Do you find that the more you drink, the thirstier you tend to get…or maybe it’s just me :)!

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Allie April 24, 2013 at 3:15 am

One I NEED to practice is that “tomorrow is a new day” one! I tend to get so defeatist when I go off track with food or have a bad workout–but one day is one day, shouldn’t let it get in the way of doing right tomorrow! And yes, it’s amazing what a difference just a few small, simple changes can make.

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Khushboo April 24, 2013 at 7:58 am

For what it’s worth, a bad workout still deserves kudos for actually getting up and giving it an attempt- that’s more than a lot of people can say for themselves :)!

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Alexis @ Hummusapien April 24, 2013 at 6:02 pm

I’m a huge fan of spreading avocado on toast. As a matter of fact, I just had some with my breakfast! I try to get enough sleep, eat well and exercise, but I’m not the best water drinker or non-stresser. I, too, drink much more when I have my water bottle handy!

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Khushboo April 24, 2013 at 8:49 pm

The only thing better than avocado toast is topping avocado toast with a runny egg!!

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