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Spring clean your health routine


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Proper meal planning and prepping will help ensure healthy eating.

Changing to a healthy lifestyle can be overwhelming. There are so many new products available and every time you turn on the TV the news tells us we must immediately start eating something or immediately stop eating what we thought was good for us. Just focus on the positive changes you are making and keep moving in the right direction. Your body will notice every time you make a great choice.

With spring here and sunny days ahead, let's get ready to spring into health this season. As we continue to look for ways to make strides toward a healthy lifestyle, it's important to revisit and fine tune those first few steps we took. Are you eating less sugar, drinking more water, taking your supplements, choosing whole foods over processed, etc.?

Clear the clutter on your health. The first step is to re-evaluate your habits and reboot the ones that have slipped.

Water over Juice and Pop

Are you drinking half of your body weight in ounces of water each day? If not make it a habit to drink all of your water each day before indulging in juices, alcohols or pop.

Meal Prepping

Do you meal plan or meal prep? It's a great way to help your healthy eating habits stick. When you are in a rush to the next sports event or on your way home from a long day at work it's tempting to grab something convenient. Try to prep a few dinners one evening to use on those busy days.

Cut the Sugar

If you haven't reduced your sugar consumption below 6-9 teaspoons a day (per the American Heart Association) keep looking for ways to cut it. Check your pantry for sneaky sugars added to pretzels, snacks and even your pasta sauce. If you have a sugar craving, snack on a piece of fruit before hitting the candy aisle.

After you have dusted off your old health changes make a plan to continue to implement them and start adding new healthy habits. This is not an overnight process, it takes a lifetime of healthy living and every positive change is a step in the right direction.

New Habits to Work Into Your Routine

• Meditation and Affirmations. If you feel anxious or have a talkative mind, make it a point to clear it and think about nothing for a few minutes each day. You don't have to be a Zen master to see the positive impact. Just sit in a quite space, set your phone timer for ten minutes, or even just one minute and try to think of nothing at all.

• Cut back on one unhealthy habit. This doesn't mean you need to quit something cold turkey, but maybe you eat out a lot. Try to do that one less time per week. Maybe you are running to the breakroom for coffee more than you'd like. Switch to uncaffinated tea on round two. Parking at the front door at work or the store? Park a few rows back and get your extra steps in. Every small change will add up.

Keep moving toward your health and wellness goals. Every small change will add up to big health improvements.

Emily Countryman is a board certified health coach and owner of Ideal Wellness located at 2639 172nd St. NE Suite 104 in Smokey Point/Marysville She can be reached online at


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