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July 15, 2012

What about Your health

We often hear about the need to provide for our families, and protect their financial security through the use of various insurance products.  We’re always preparing for what happens when we die, or become ill.  It’s important to plan for the inevitable, or the unfortunate, but let’s take a step back for a moment.

What does providing for you family really mean?  Let’s start by taking the best possible care of yourself to be around for them as long as possible. Not only will you be able to provide for them longer, you’ll be healthier and enable to enjoy your precious family even more.

Did you fall off the health bandwagon years ago when you worked too many hours, or were too busy to prepare healthy meals?  Come on back up, there’s always room here for one more.  Where to start, you ask?  Don’t go out and run a marathon this weekend – start with some small changes.

Cutting back on sugar and fat in your diet is an excellent way to start. Start slowly – try cutting back on the sugar this week and see how it goes.  Breaking a sugar addiction can be hard. Headaches and cravings are not uncommon for the first few days if you go cold turkey.  Easing back takes a bit longer, but may be easier on your body.  Two sugar cubes in every cup of coffee, cut back to one for the first day or two, then skip the sugar altogether a few days later.  Afternoon sugar craving? Go for a walk instead and distract yourself until the urge passes.  You’ll feel better for it when you realise you’ve skipped the crash that follows that 3pm chocolate bar.

Easy substitutions to reduce your sugar intake are whole grain bread for white, peanut butter for jam, plain yogurt for the fruit flavoured ones – these are just a few examples.  Start to think about your choices and you’d be amazed by the amount of hidden sugars we consume.

Cutting excess fat from your diet is another essential step.  The first step is to eliminate the fried foods from your diet. There go the fries, the fried chicken and the doughnuts.  Heavy sauces are loaded with hidden fats.  Choose tomato based sauces over the creamy ones. If you’re having soup, opt for a broth base instead of a creamy base.  Cheese is also high in fat; choose hard cheeses and cut back on how much you use.

Remember that there are healthy fats that you do want to keep in your diet.  Avocado, olive oil, fatty fish such as salmon, nuts and seeds are all good examples of foods containing health fats.

Is your head spinning with information about what’s good and what’s bad? What you want to keep in your diet and in what quanitites?  The Government of Canada website is a good place to start.

Here are some other resources for nutrition information:

Prevention Magazine website

The Real Age Eat Smart page

eaTracker

 

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