May 8, 2008

Buy Lean, Cook Light, Eat Less,

Move More

THERE... If you just conscientiously follow that advice, you'll save money, eat well, lose weight and feel better. Ahhh, if only it was that easy!

It's the season when we're getting outside more and finding out just how much we didn't keep in shape during this past tough winter. It's the time of year when we get out some lighter clothes and just hope they fit. Right now is also a time when grocery prices are really challenging.

BUY LEAN - This doesn't just mean meat, but includes everything on your shopping list. Read those labels, not only for fat content, but also sodium amounts. Be sure you scan the ingredients for sugars, especially the dreaded high-fructose corn syrup. Check the shelf-edge tags for unit price as the largest packages are no longer always the cheapest per unit, nor are the smallest packages always the most expensive per unit anymore.

COOK LIGHT - Again, everything! As we're coming into salad season, check a few cookbooks for lower-fat, lower sodium homemade dressing recipes. I've taken to using a mixture of home-made light maple syrup and a dijon-type mustard. Couldn't be simpler, sticks to the salad greens well, adds a nice flavor. I think I'll add a smidge of chipolte pepper to the next batch.

Summer means more ice-cream type desserts too, but you can easily make frozen yoghurts, juice bars, your own filled cookies. Fruit and veggies are abundant for the next few months, so use them often, trying a new recipe here or there. And that lemonade you've been buying cans of for how many summers now? Loaded with corn syrup! Make your own. Buy bottled lemon juice and mix one cup lemon juice to four cups water, sweetening to taste, THEN for a half gallon, add the juice and pulp from one lemon and slice another lemon into your lemonade. You can do the same thing with limes for a great limeade, or best of all, mix the two.

EAT LESS - Now doesn't that sound simple! It really is, you know. It's a question of deciding with your mind just what foods you want to put into your mouth and why. How hunger-based is your eating? You know how to do it... the portions, what you snack on, how many calories you almost unconsciously eat each day... there's no big secret to eating less; it starts in your mind, then it's totally between your hand and your mouth!

MOVE MORE - If you do no other single thing to help you move more, go to Wal-Mart and spend less than $5 buying a GoWalking pedometer by Sportline. This is a step-counter so you don't have to try and measure the length of your stride, etc. You clip this little gadget to your waistband (I clip it to my underwear) right by your hip and each step you take, it records. Use it for a few days to see what your baseline is, then aim to increase it in small steps (bad pun!) until you're doing at least 10,000 steps a day.

You may think you already walk plenty, but check it out. You may think that 10,000 steps in not possible for you, but it truly IS. You'll find you glance at the pedometer during the day, then you park your car a little further from the store, your backyard walkabout may become a little longer and another flight of stairs doesn't seem quite so steep. This is the simplest, quickest, cheapest way I can think of to start moving toward this goal of moving more. Let me know what you think!



Momala said...

Great ideas! I'm going to have to find my pedometer and wear it. I'm sure I don't walk anywhere near 10,000 steps!

Anonymous said...

Good morning.
Great ideas...I have used some of these ideas and am down 24 pounds. It does work.
Of course in June I will most likely have some strawberries and cream Alice Goldsmith