50 Easy Tips for a Healthy Lifestyle

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healthy living photosSo, with the new year upon us, I’ve made some pretty interesting goals for myself. I have some overall ones for the blog and some for my family, but the ones that pertain specifically to me have to do with my health. I recently started seeing a personal trainer. There were lots of reasons for my decision to do this, which I’ll get into at a different time, but I’ve come to find that taking baby steps towards a healthy lifestyle as opposed to changing the way you eat completely upside down {like on crash diets, fad diets, etc.} is definitely easier to do and will last much longer. Here’s a list I put together of 50 healthy eating tips. Feel free to give one or two of these a whirl and see how they work in your life! Once you have those down, add in one or two more. One little change can make a huge difference.

I’ll be doing more updates on my healthy eating and fitness progress with *gulp* before and after photos. I think…..insert nervous laugh here.

1. Drink more water!

2. And while you’re at it, quit drinking soda. It has absolutely no nutritional value. My husband promised himself he would quit drinking soda four years ago. And believe it or not, he’s never had a sip since. What a show-off, right? Lol! I will have a diet soda pop once in a while when we go to a restaurant, but that’s pretty much it.

3. Try sticking with water and milk. Don’t buy juice. I used to think it was healthy, but holy mama mia the sugar in juice is a little ridiculous.

4. Don’t eat while standing.

5. Or in front of the TV! {I’m a notorious mindless eater, so this is something I need to work on.}

6. Incorporate more protein into your diet. More protein will help keep you fuller longer.

7. Try eating a salad a day. {I’m going to be trying this!}

IMG_00368. If you don’t like salad, try throwing a bunch of veggies into soup. It’s a different, but still delicious way to get a bunch of veggies into your diet.

9. Try satisfying your sweet tooth with fruit. Apples and all-natural peanut butter is one of my favorites.

10. Try natural sweeteners like honey, maple syrup and agave instead of white sugar.

11. Switch over to whole wheat flour or white whole wheat flour {like the albino version of whole wheat flour…so you can trick your kids easier!}

12. Try dark chocolate instead of milk or semi-sweet.

13. Try 1% or non-fat milk over 2% or whole.

14. Try greek yogurt over traditional low-fat, flavored yogurt varieties.

15. Choose unsalted nuts instead of salted.

16. Try using olive oil instead of vegetable oil.

17. Try coconut oil in place of butter.

18. Try eating your complex carbs at breakfast and lunch.

19. Don’t eat dessert every night.

20. Find and try foods higher in fiber.

21. Try to go 1 week without eating sugar.

22. Then try to go 1 week without eating artificial sugar.

23. Purchase low-sodium versions of the original versions.

IMG_000224. Go to bed 30 minutes earlier.

25. Watch 30 minutes less of TV each day.

26. Choose one meal per week to splurge. But don’t go all buck-wild.

27. Incorporate more foods high in anti-oxidants.

28. Don’t skip breakfast.

29. Replace brown rice for white.

30. Replace white bread with whole wheat.

31. Replace pasta with the whole wheat version or make zucchini noodles.

32. Try baking instead of frying.

33. Try sweet potatoes or yams over white potatoes.

34. Try one new spice/herb per week.

IMG_002435. Take a sack lunch to work instead of eating out.

36. Eat out 1 time less per week.

37. Try roasting or steaming your veggies.

38. Do jumping jacks or burpees during commercial breaks.

39. Find an activity you love like hiking, dancing, sports or zumba. That way exercising won’t feel like exercise.

40. Start saying to yourself “I want to work out” instead of “I have to workout”.

41. Keep a positive attitude even when you want to eat all the cookies and cupcakes in the world. {This is totally hard for me!}

42. Try dipping bread into olive oil and balsamic vinegar instead of smearing on the butter.

43. Learn what portion sizes are right for you and try to stick with it for 1 week.

44. Don’t eat 2 hours before you go to bed.

IMG_004945. Try portioning your meals and snacks out the night before using ziploc bags and sharpies.

46. Hold yourself accountable no matter what–when you are successful and when you go off the rails.

47.  Don’t finish all the food on your plate at a meal. It’s ok not to finish!

48. Try eating slower.

49. Get to know your body and do what works for you. {Gluten free, paleo, vegan, vegetarian, etc.}

50. If you have a bad day, get back at it the very next day. Don’t sabotage yourself!

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48 Responses
  1. Crunchy Thai Chicken Salad | Lauren's Latest

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    […] back, it went by pretty fast. I feel like I just wrote this post about 50 Easy Tips for a Healthy Lifestyle last week. And by last week I mean last year?! […]

  3. Kara

    This is a GREAT list! Thank you for sharing these tips…they each will make a difference, not to mention when they’re combined. I love the idea of just adding a few at a time. It does less “daunting” and more likely to lead to a successful and healthy lifestyle change, as opposed to a drastic change that is difficult to stick to. By the way, your list got me nodding my head in “convicted acknowledgement” about some needed changes….diet soda, eating in front of the TV, and eating while standing…some of my biggest weaknesses. 🙂 Thanks so much for the motivation and encouragement to make some healthy choices. As always….love your blog….and I’m off to make your yummy bean-free turkey chili. 🙂

  4. Lacey Stephens

    Number 29 you said replace brown rice with white rice. Is that a typo or is white rice better than brown? I love all of your recipes, I have tried many and have enjoyed them all!!

  5. Denise V

    Using sugar free jello flavor for plain greek yogurt works.1/2 cup yogurt add 1/4tsp of jello,add more or less for taste.Awesome,also,add fresh fruit.

  6. John Benediktson

    If you are up to the research, take a look at the relative sugar content of whole milk against that of skim or 2%. As a diabetic (type 2) I have trouble with the sugar content of the lower fat milks and do much better with the whole milk. I know we like to think that skim milk is better for us but all the research I have seen indicates just the opposite (assuming milk fat and / or lactose aren’t an issue ) as does my own personal experience.

  7. Johanna

    Great list ! Thank you so much for your tips!
    I’m sorry that people had to leave such nasty, unnecessary comments. There opinions are welcomed but why don’t they present it in a much nicer way? Of course, negative people always have to put a negative spin on a positive thing that good people, like yourself are doing. Don’t let people like that discourage you. Keep it up! I know that I am greatly aprpreciative of any helpful tips I can get.

  8. Susan

    I know I’m getting to this very late, but I would like to commend you on this list. I’m not sure about drinking cows’ milk, though it can be useful. My normal thing to drink is water, with occasional herb tea, hot or iced. I had to give up even diet soda when I was diagnosed with asthma, because the carbonation aggravated my asthma, and have been just fine with drinking a lot of water. It is a lot more thirst-quenching than anything else we can drink. I strongly recommend drinking lots of water.

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  11. katie

    & you’re going to want to replace WHITE bread FOR whole wheat.
    Maybe you should look into the science behind your facts before you make a so called “healthy” nutritional list for people to follow. Whole wheat is very nutrient dense and supplies many vitamins and minerals that your body needs.

  12. katie

    Coconut oil is extremely high in saturated fat and is therefore difficult for the body to breakdown…causing it to be stored in fat tissue. Stick with olive oil 🙂

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  14. mysweetiepiepi

    Great tips and ideas, I’m going to be working these throughout the year.

    I’ve pinned it here to keep myself motivated:


    Keep up the good work :+)

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  16. chelsey

    these are such great tips, thanks for sharing!! i love all your recipes and can’t wait to try more out. happy new year!

    xo Chelsey


  17. Ali

    Lots of great tips here. Thank you Lauren. 🙂 I think mine would be to limit desserts and any sweets, as well as cutting out any chips, soda and other processed and bad for you foods. More sleep and more water are needed too. 🙂

  18. Carrie Gnauck

    Instead of using Sharpies and Ziploc bags, we use small plastic containers and a wax pencil to cut down on needless plastic baggie waste. We portion out all our snacks on Sunday night and throw them in a clear container in the fridge to use throughout the week.

      1. Carrie Gnauck

        I most recently ordered a two-pack at amazon. I have sometimes seen them in the canning section at the grocery store, too. They’re so handy – I use them for everything! They wipe off from smooth plastic with a bit of paper towel or dry rag. My 3-year-old is diabetic and we use them to mark the carbs on each snack container. Calorie counts would be handy for grownups – LOVE THEM!

  19. Natalie @ Paper & Birch

    Great tips Lauren! I’ve been trying the water instead of juice tip. I may be weird, but I don’t like water unless there’s lemon or something in it.
    We use friday’s as our indulge meal – we call it “Fun Food Friday”. However sometimes it turns into Fun Food Saturday as well….. Is that considered “buck-wild”?

  20. Tara Brennan

    Great ideas Lauren. Simple but easy to do. I do a lot of these already but found a few I will try. Thanks for sharing.

  21. Aubri

    So, I had twins just a few weeks before you had Blake (actually, my boy twinner’s name is Blake too!). I have 5 kids total and I’m pretty much going nutso. I haven’t lost my baby weight and I’m dying! So, I have made a goal to lose the weight and put myself first (more often, anyway!). We already do a lot of these, but some I’m going to work harder on. Thanks for the reminder. Great post…and I can’t wait to see some of your healthy recipes…especially replacing white sugar and replacing butter with coconut oil!

  22. Karli

    Great post. Some of them seem so small but can make a huge difference! I’m excited to follow along with your journey. I know you can do it!

  23. Laurie

    My problem is eating at night and not getting enough sleep. Good, smart tips! I do a lot of them but the nighttime snacking and not sleeping get me every time.

  24. Laura

    This is a great list! I think baby steps are such a big part of true overall success rather than giant leaps. Mine this year is Zumba once a week. I love it but don’t want to overwhelm myself with an unrealistic goal.

  25. Nicole

    Ugh…#3? Please do some research. Research not funded by the dairy lobby. Milk is meant for baby cows, not humans. We use sole milk products (especially cheese) for cooking but stopped drinking milk altogether and my husband and I have both list weight, lowered our cholesterol and feel so much better. Just drink water! Nothing else!

    1. Karen

      We now drink raw goat milk. Used to buy only non fat cows milk until I googled it and found out all the horrible stuff they do to make it non fat. Now, if we are out of goat milk I buy whole vow milk.

      1. Beth

        Water and infused waters are the best options for your body. There are lots of healthy fruits and herbs that you can put into water. Do some research on the health benefits of different fruits/herbs in your water. Also, I’m not a tea person, but there are many types of tea that are really good for you. Green tea especially fights off cancer among having many other health benefits. Finally: smoothies are great for you! As long as you make them yourself. Throw in lots of veggies with a few fruits for flavoring and you keep the sugars down (natural sugar, by the way) while still having an alternative to just drinking water.

  26. Lisa @ Garnish with Lemon

    Such great suggestions, Lauren! I definitely need to try eating slower-trying to work on that this year! Can’t wait to see what you share in 2014! Happy New Year!

  27. Taylor @ FoodFaithFitness

    I love all of these tips girl! So simple and straight forward, yet will make a huge difference to your health! Great post!