Tipping the Scales in Your Favor


Some good Web sites to help you plan a healthy meal:

  • American Heart Association's Delicious Decisions*
  • Start by using a scale and measuring cup to serve your food. Read food labels to determine serving sizes. One bowl of cereal may actually be two ¾-cup servings. A small frozen pizza may contain up to three servings (check the nutrition information label). This could add up to more calories than you think you’re getting. Being aware of serving sizes may make it easier to avoid those extra calories.



Choose snacks that are nutritious and filling. A piece of fresh fruit, cut raw vegetables, or a container of low-fat yogurt are excellent (and portable) choices to tide you over until mealtimes. String cheese or a natural organic meat stick is also good and healthy. Take these snacks with you for a healthy alternative to chips, cookies, or candy.


Take your time! Eat only when you are hungry and enjoy the taste, texture, and smell of your meal as you eat it. Remember, it takes approximately 15 minutes for your stomach to signal your brain that you are full. Chew your food slowly - count the number of bites.


For healthy eating tips and current research on nutrition and diet visit Facts ABout weight loss.


If you choose to eat out, remember these important suggestions: Watch your portions. Portion sizes at restaurants (including fast food) are usually more than one serving, which can result in overeating. Choose smaller portion sizes, order an appetizer and a leafy green salad with low-fat dressing, share an entree with a friend, or get a "doggy bag" and save half for another meal.


Forgive yourself. If you occasionally make mistakes, don’t give up! Forgive yourself for making that choice and keep working on it. Eat an extra healthy lunch and dinner if you had a high-calorie, high-fat breakfast. Add more physical activity to your day.


Remember physical activity! Aim for at least 30 minutes (adults) or 60 minutes (children) of moderate-intensity physical activity five or more days of the week. If you are just starting to be physically active, remember that even small increases provide health benefits. Check with your physician first, and then start with a few minutes of activity a day and gradually increase, working your way up to 30 minutes. If you already get 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity a day, you can gain even more health benefits by increasing the amount of time that you are physically active or by taking part in more vigorous-intensity activities.


For more information on making physical activity a regular part of your healthy lifestyle, visit CDC's Physical Activity Web site.

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