The dawn of a new decade means you have the chance to eat better, live healthier and #StartYourYearRight. We asked our Vitality nutrition expert for her top tips to succeed in 2020, and here’s what she had to say.
Every day we’re faced with thousands of little choices that affect our quality of life and long-term health: packed lunch or fast food, stairs or lift, cooldrink or water and couch or gym.
Vitality dietitian Terry Harris believes that being more aware of these choices, and choosing healthier ones more often than not, will incrementally change the way we live – a change that will, over time, become the happy default. "It's all about consistency," she says. "Sticking to one tiny positive swap each day for three months is far better than 30 big changes that only last a week."
Unsure where to start? Here are Terry’s top 20 habits for healthy living – pick a few and see what you can do with them for the rest of the month. It all starts with your very next choice.
#StartYourYearRight with these tips
- Plan your food and drinks ahead of time
- The less processed your food, the better
- Variety wins, so mix up your diet and try fruit and vegetables of all colours
- Eat more plants, full stop!
- Choose plant fats, like olive or canola oil, avocado, nuts and seeds
- Add legumes (like beans, lentils, chickpeas and tofu) to your meals more often
- Choose wholegrains
- Include fat-free dairy or dairy-free alternatives
- Eat less red meat and avoid processed meats (healthier proteins include oily fish, eggs, skinless poultry)
- Reduce your salt intake
- Cook more often
- When you do, favour healthier cooking methods (steaming or grilling over frying!)
- Get active regularly
- Go for a health check
- Don’t smoke
- Drink less alcohol
- Limit sugar and avoid sugary drinks
- Get enough good quality sleep
- Manage your stress
- Put time into developing meaningful relationships
When that moment of decision-making comes and you need motivation, remember your 2020 goals, look forward to your Vitality rewards, and remember the words of American philosopher Will Durant: “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.”
Make 2020 the year you excel!
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