Are you on a diet? Trying to lose weight? For those of us who want to live long, healthy, and active lives, diet and nutrition are top priorities. But it can be confusing trying to decipher what’s hype and what’s not these days, that is for sure.

Seems every time I turn around there is some new diet or weight-loss supplement being touted. We had the South Beach diet, the Zone diet, the Atkins Diet, and now there’s the Paleo diet and even the Anti-Estrogen diet. Dr. Oz was telling us about the latest weight loss discovery – raspberry ketones!

Ads abound claiming you can “Lose weight without exercising”, “banish the flab without dieting”, “Pop this pill and your fat will magically disappear” – all hogwash if you ask me. Let me assure you eating well and staying in shape is not as difficult as some think. All it really takes is a true desire to be healthy along with following some basic but sound nutrition guidelines.

Today, I’d like to share with you a few healthy tips I’ve used over the years to help me stay in shape. Pick one or two and implement them into your daily routine and you will definitely see changes. Are you ready?

1. Detox your system: it’s spring and a great time to clean both your house and your body. Get rid of sugars, fats, salts, dairy, white flour, sodas, red meat and alcohol for a while and see how much lighter you feel. Twice a year is a recommended.

2. Drink more water: water is great for getting things moving, improving your complexion, and hydrating the skin and the body. Drinking water also staves off false hunger pains. Use a water purifier and drink 8 – 12 eight-ounce glasses per day depending on your weight. I use tall colorful glasses to make the experience more enjoyable.

3. Eat more fresh fruits and veggies: yes, I know you’ve heard it before. But do you realize how very important this is? These foods are vitamin dynamos and pack a punch when it comes to fighting disease and inflammation. The more colorful your plate, the better. Meat should only be about 20% of your meal. The rest should be fruits, veggies, and whole grains.

4. Ditch the salt and the grease: if you have high blood pressure or cholesterol problems, make this a priority. Want to get off your meds? Try using fresh herbs instead of salt which causes high blood pressure, water retention, and bloating. Replace vegetable oil with healthy oils such as extra virgin olive oil, grapeseed oil, and extra virgin coconut oil instead. Your palate will adjust, trust me.

As you can probably guess, I am a firm believer in the philosophy “You are what you eat”. Our bodies are temples so let’s treat them as such, shall we? And while I’m on the subject, I’d be remiss if I didn’t talk about feeding our spiritual body as well. It too needs a healthy diet. What are you feeding your spirit? Are you noshing on junk food like romance novels, tv sitcoms, or violent movies? When was the last time you visited a place of worship? Do you fill your mind with positive thoughts of faith and hope or are you still digesting the negativity from yesterday, last week, or twenty years ago?

To feed my spirit, I choose to listen to uplifting words and music, worship on a regular basis, and surround myself with positive, encouraging people. I’ve done away with those energy vampires who suck my energy dry with all their complaining, moaning, and negative self-defeatist attitudes. I’ve also chosen to disassociate from those who have a low sense of self-esteem or a victim mentality because they only drag me down.

Our daily diet of foods, habits, and thoughts can make a huge difference in the quality of life and the level of joy and energy we feel. So, I hope this post has encouraged you to make some healthy choices. Do write and share your thoughts with me. Until next time, keep looking up!

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