Healthy Weight

Nutrition and Exercise are Key

Reaching and staying at a healthy weight is one of the best ways to reduce your risk for health problems like diabetes, stroke, and heart disease. It can help you feel better. You will have more energy for the things you love in life.

Healthy Eating

Tips that can make a big change in weight:

Drink water
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Drink water rather than soda or fruit juice. Make soda a treat that you have once a week.

Pay attention to what you eat
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Eat these foods more often:

  • Chicken, turkey, fish, beans, peas
  • Fruits and veggies (5 helpings - 1 helping is 1/2 to 1 cup)
  • Nonfat or low fat milk or yogurt, low fat cheese, low fat cottage cheese
  • Baked, boiled, broiled or steamed foods
  • Whole wheat bread, bagels, tortillas, rice, pasta

Limit fatty foods - eat these foods less often:

  • Chips, cookies, pastries, French fries, crackers
  • Ice cream, flavored milk, candy, juice bars
  • Pan friend or deep-fat fried foods
  • Hot dogs, bacon, cold cuts
  • Butter, oils, gravy

Some Tricks to Better Eating Habits:

  • Eat three balanced meals a day and plan for two snacks each day.
  • Have breakfast every day, even if you are short on time.
  • Eat meals as a family as often as you can at table. If you are single, plan meals and sit at table to eat. Do not sit in front of the TV during meal times. Watching TV during meals tends to increase the amount eaten in absence of feeling hungry.
  • Keep healthy foods within easy reach at home, school and/or work. Keep “junk” foods out of the house.
  • Limit eating at fast food places to once a week. Fast food tends to be high in salt, fat and calories. Avoid “supersized” meals and drinks.
  • Listen to your body. Eat only when you are hungry, not because something looks good.

Exercise

Exercise is part of getting to and maintaining a healthy weight. It is part of a healthy lifestyle. Our long human history of hunting and gathering in order to survive have given us bodies that are very efficient in storing fat for future need. Nowadays we don’t need to work so hard, but our bodies are still programmed to store fat. Exercise tricks the body into giving up that fat.

Talk to your doctor about what type and how much exercise to do if you:

  • Have not been active for a long time
  • Have any health problems
  • Are pregnant
  • Are over the age of 60

How to get started:

Choose an exercise you like to do
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Try to vary the type of exercise you do to increase the health benefits and prevent boredom and injury. Think in terms of:

  • Large muscle exercise: walking, jogging, dancing, bicycling, swimming. Walking is a good choice for beginners. You only need a good pair of shoes. Walking is good for your heart and lungs.
  • Strength training exercise: Push ups, sit ups, weights
Stretch
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Begin and end an exercise session with 5 minutes of slow movement or gentle stretches

Exercise at a comfortable pace
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Listen to your body. You are exercising too hard if you:

  • Feel pain anywhere in your body
  • Have problems breathing
  • Feel weak, faint, or dizzy

Stop exercising and call your doctor or 911 if you have:

  • Pain or pressure in your chest, left neck, shoulder, or arm
  • Sudden dizziness
  • Cold sweat
  • Fainting

Resources

The Alliance has resources to help you reach a healthy weight.

Contact us:

healthpromotion@alamedaalliance.org
(510) 747-4567 or 1-877-932-2738
CRS 711 / TTY 1-800-735-2929
Monday – Friday
8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.