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New Year! New Resolve!

Categories: General Health

The holidays can be brutal on anyone’s efforts to maintain and attain ideal weight. Something purposeful YOU can resolve to do to increase your lifespan is to eat fewer calories, continue moving, and maintain your ideal weight for your height. Every day, I am asked for my advice on this very subject.

My advice is simple and so very basic.

There are many great diet and exercise programs, but the very best are the ones you will actually do and stick to it. I advise that you move an hour every day whether you want to or not. Three times a week, break a sweat in your work outs. Change things up periodically so your exercise is fun and interesting.

Here are just a few example of ways to get moving:

  • Go for a walk
  • Go to Yoga or Pilates class
  • Swim
  • Take dance classes (or just have some fun free styling)

Join friends and keep it enjoyable! As we age, low impact activities are probably smarter to avoid injuring our joints and muscles. Of course if you are injured or hurt, make an exercise plan with your doctor. Just do it!

What About Dieting?

My diet plan for you is also simple. I don’t like to count and weigh things. Journals are known to help people be accountable for what they are doing, but I like to break this down to its simplest form so you don’t have to count and think.

  • Eat 2 or 3 meals per day divided through the day such as:
    • On a small plate, put salad or steamed vegetables on one half.
    • The other half should be a protein the size of a deck of cards (meat, fish or chicken); if you want to go vegetarian, choose eggs, tofu, or beans.
    • Water is your drink. Drink about 64 ounces (a half gallon) a day.

Be careful what you put on your salad and meat. Do NOT use any products with high fructose corn syrup or fake sugar additives, salt, soy products, or preservatives. Whenever possible, eat organic and things that are wild or free range. Notably absent from this diet are cookies, pies, cakes, ice cream, sugar treats, starches like chips, crackers, bread, rice, pasta. I often tell my patients to eat from the outside of the grocery store and venture only into the middle for paper products. I think processed foods are dangerous to those attempting to shed pounds.

Embrace a New Year with a New You

My goal for you is to move slowly toward your ideal weight, maybe shedding about half a pound per week. Going too fast leaves you depleted and less likely to have success reaching your goal. We want you to have success in reaching the best possible version of you. So many chronic debilitating diseases (diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol, heart attack, stroke) can be avoided by following this simple advice. If you need it, let us help you reach your goal.

Meet the Author

Gayle Hopper, MD

Specialty: Family Medicine

As a physician at Hoag Medical Group, Dr. Hopper aims to provide her patients with personal attention and individualized care along with the comprehensive network of Hoag services and specialists. As she says it best, “I love to nourish and care for living things. My patients can trust me to stay with them and guide them through their journey toward good health.” View Bio [+]