Easy ways to make health a priority

Easy ways to make health a priority

(NAPS)-Alyse Levine, MS, RD and nutrition adviser, encourages all Americans to maintain a focus on their health through healthy food choices and engaging activities.
"All the latest research shows that extreme-or fad-diets don't work in the long term, even if you're trying to get into that favorite swimsuit or pair of shorts," said Levine. "It's vital to practice good habits all year long, including finding fitness activities you enjoy, eating balanced meals and snacking on nutrient-rich foods-like pistachios-to get you through the day."
Levine suggests a few easy tips to prioritize your health:
* Get a leg up on fitness. You can get your legs toned and ready for shorts by giving up your car one day a week and traveling by bike or walking. As a bonus, you'll save on gas and help out the environment while getting your body in shape.
* Don't be fake. Swap out highly processed foods filled with artificial ingredients for foods packaged by nature. Pre-packed, portion-controlled snacks are a great idea when you're counting calories, but many are overly processed, which can strip out a lot of nutrients.
* It all adds up. If you want to maintain a healthy weight, the equation is simple. Burn as many calories as you consume and make smart food choices every day. Keeping track of what you eat is often half the battle. Use a food tracker tool to log foods throughout the day and set goals for the future.
* Take the 49-nut challenge. Incorporate a serving of pistachios into your daily diet to help keep blood sugar levels in check and protect your heart. In fact, research shows that, on average, people who regularly consume tree nuts, including pistachios, have thinner waistlines and a better overall diet. Pistachios are a power-packed snack-filled with antioxidants and other key nutrients. Plus, you can enjoy 49 pistachios in every serving-more than any other snack nut.
For more tips from Alyse Levine, information on healthy food options and ways to maintain a healthy weight, visit www.The GreenNut.org.