Lifestyle

16 Tips to Live a Healthier Life Starting Right Now

Get healthier with these tips

It’s April – are you still on track with your New Year’s resolutions, or are those long forgotten? Don’t worry, it’s not too late to make 2016 your healthiest year yet.

Whether it's drinking more water, eliminating caffeine, or getting a workout plan together, there are easy ways to improve your overall energy and fitness levels and feel better as a result. And don't worry. You don't have to do all 16 tips - just pick one or two and start there.

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Here are tips from dieticians on what to do – and what to avoid – to get healthier in all aspects of your life.

The key to a balanced diet is not to diet.

16 Get-Healthy Tips

1. Learn the language of labelese. You may not be fluent in another language but learning how to read ‘labelese’ or the language of labels can help you navigate the grocery store aisles to save your health. There are over 14,000 additives used in commercially prepared foods today. Some are far more complicated and potentially dangerous. Ones to make note of are the artificial preservatives and flavors that have been linked to cancer, toxicity to the nervous system and other ill side effects. These include BHA, BHT, EDTA, sodium benzoate, nitrates, nitrites and monosodium glutamate, among others. - Chef Mareya, licensed holistic nutritionist, author and founder of EatCleaner.com

2. ​Ditch the diet mentality. The key to a balanced diet is not to diet. Why would we ever be motivated to stick to something that begins with DIE? Diet comes from a place of deprivation and restriction. Being too restrictive, not eating enough of the right foods and eating too little can all sabotage your efforts to get healthy and maintain the proper weight and body fat levels. When you eat cleaner, you are focusing on fresh and living sustainably to feed your body to the core – and that just feels good. - Chef Mareya.

3. Join the hydration nation. Ahhh, water. You can live for weeks without food, but without water, your body will shut down in just a few days. It’s that important. Every metabolic function your cells perform requires hydration, including digestion, so strive to drink half your body weight in ounces every day. Keep clean water available sustainably in your kitchen at all times by using a water filter on your sink or refrigerator, a filtered pitcher or a water delivery service instead and fill your own reusable bottles to help cut down on plastic. - Chef Mareya

16 Tips to Live a Healthier Life Starting Right Now

4. Kick the sugar habit. The taste for sugar is the strongest sensation because the receptors for sweet are on the tip of your tongue. There are many clean and natural sugar alternatives on the market today, such as stevia and monkfruit extract. Fresh fruit is nature’s sweet, grab a handful of strawberries or berries for a sweet treat. If your sugar craving needs more drastic measures, dip the fruit in dark chocolate, which is good for you with antioxidants. - Chef Mareya

5. Eliminate coffee, tea and alcoholic beverages. These dehydrate, as well sodas, which are extremely acidic and drink plenty of alkaline ionized water to give yourself maximum hydration. The size of the water molecule is smaller and reaches deeper into your cells, organs, blood, and brain, keeping your body and mind keen and operating at an optimal level of health. - Nedalee Thomas, CEO of www.ChansonWater.com

6. Drink tea. Tea has many well documented health benefits, and it's one way you can become healthier. Additionally, certain teas like green tea are believed to aid weight loss, and the antioxidants can protect your heart and blood vessels and help improve your skin. Go to a specialty tea store to get motivated. They will be able to provide you all sorts of teas and herbs that you find appealing. The can also supply you with the perfect tea vessels. - Rene Ficek, registered dietitian and lead nutrition expert at Seattle Sutton's Healthy Eating.

7. Eat better food. Better health starts in the kitchen. But if you are lacking cooking skills, it is necessary to acquire these. Cooking classes are one of the best ways to get inspired and educated. Additionally, you could join a CSA in order receive fresh produce regularly. Receiving fresh produce weekly will surely increase fruit and vegetable intake. – Rene Ficek

8. Try a new food each week. Rather than cutting out foods from your diet, opt to add more foods in to your diet this year. Many of us don't eat a varied enough diet, so ensure you are getting all the nutrients your body needs - as well as enhancing your enjoyment of food - by making a resolution to try a new food each week. Try hitting the fruit and veg aisle first to sample some exotic fruit and vegetables you may have yet to try, such as dragon fruit, lychees, romanescu and plantain. – Rene Ficek

16 Tips to Live a Healthier Life Starting Right Now

9. Prioritize your well-being. That means taking the time to prepare healthy meals, scheduling exercise, scheduling your doctor appointments, and taking time to relax. - Samantha Markovitz, owner and coach of GraceMark Wellness & Lifestyle Coaching

10. Eat magnesium rich foods. This will ease PMS symptoms. These foods include dark chocolate, sunflower seeds, leafy greens, and wild-caught salmon, as well as protein like oatmeal, yogurt, eggs, nuts, and cheese. Add raspberries, apples, oranges, and dark leafy greens to your diet for pain relief. Finally, drink 8-10 glasses of water daily to flush toxins and prevent bloating. Boost your serotonin levels, energy, and mood with 5-HTP (50 mg in the evening to increase serotonin), daily B-complex, daily calcium D-glucarate, daily calcium/magnesium (500 mg/500 mg before bed), evening primrose oil (1,000 mg daily, starting two weeks before your period), flaxseed oil (1

tablespoon daily), a daily food-based women’ multivitamin and mineral supplement, a daily probiotic supplement (in the morning with food), and vitamin D3 (1,000 IU before bed). Herbs that can also help reduce a variety of PMS symptoms. Try black cohosh, cramp bark, curcuma, dong quai, ginger, vitex, and wild yam. - Dr. Gabrielle Francis, a New York city naturopathic doctor, chiropractor and acupuncturist

11. Eat nutrient-dense food. Ensure you eat a lunch packed with nutrient-dense food, and go easy on the carbs, which can make you sleepy. - Cindy Santa Ana, integrative nutrition health coach and founder of Unlock Better Health

12. Eat a delicious and nutritious breakfast. Make sure there are green leafy veggies, some protein and healthy fats. – Cindy Santa Ana

certain teas like green tea are believed to aid weight loss, and the antioxidants can protect your heart and blood vessels

13. Add fermented veggies to one meal or take a probiotic supplement. – Cindy Santa Ana

14. Join the gym. If you didn’t commit in January, this is the perfect time with deals to be had. Sign up for that membership you’ve been considering. It’s not too late. - Dr. Nieca Goldberg, cardiologist from NYU Langone.

15. Stay or get active. Any activity will burn calories and exercise muscles. Keeping your heart pumping and blood moving should be the main goal. 3 or 4 times a week do something that gets you out of breath. Walk or run at first, maybe join a sport club or a gym. Doesn't matter what you choose, just pick something you love doing and stick with it. – Luke Fitzgerald, former trainer currently working for weight loss management company Motivation.ie.

16. Don't get bogged down in details. No matter what your goal is, lose weight, gain weight, get fit or training for something specific. There will always be details that can trip you up. Calorie counting, choosing the best program, the right type of diet, should you eat grain? Should you be taking supplements? If so what kind and how much? Do you have the right shoes? What time are you doing a 5K? How much do you lift, bro? Ignore it all, it's background noise. People like to hear their own voices and each of them has their own opinion on what is the best way and no one is right. Just get something done and worry about the details later. As you get more experience you will soon form your opinion on what is best for you. – Luke Fitzgerald.

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