Wednesday, 26 September 2012

101 nutritious, easy and tasty meal ideas using canned tuna (well, not quite 101!)

So the second task in the STEPS program has been all about getting more fish into your diet!  For some that will not be an issue, but for others, fish is rarely if ever eaten in the home.  The reasons for not incorporating fish into your regular eating plan may be financial, lack of availability, dislike of flavour, or lack of knowledge or confidence in preparing and cooking fish.

Sunday, 23 September 2012

STEPS 2 - Eat fish (or substitutes) at least once a week

I know a lot of people may want to turn off when they see this task - either due to having an allergy to fish/shellfish, or just disliking the taste.  Well, don't despair if that is you! I have alternatives that offer similar nutrition benefits, and for those of you who just don't like the taste of fish, hopefully over the next two weeks of the task, I can provide you with recipes and tips that will have you enjoying fish like never before!

So why do I think this task is important enough to include in the STEPS program?  Well, obviously the nutrition benefits are bountiful, some of which are these:

Sunday, 9 September 2012

STEPS 1 - Increase water intake

Did you know our body is made up of 55-75% water??!  With that fact alone it is easy to see how important it is to maintain our bodies hydration!

Most of you would have heard that you can go without food for up to a number of weeks, whereas water, well you're looking more around a few days, in normal conditions and health.

We get a fair bit of fluid from the food we eat, however it is not enough for our bodies to function correctly.

Our body doesn't store water so it needs a fresh supply every day.  Most mature adults lose between 2.5-3 litres of water every day, increasing in hot weather and with increased exercise.

Dehydration can be deadly, and did you know that by the time you feel thirsty, you are already experiencing a level of dehydration?

Some times when you think you are hungry, it may be that you are actually thirsty!  Have a glass of water before deciding whether you really need that extra snack!!

Water is imperative for many reasons, including the following in this diagram:

So as you can see, drinking water daily is fundamental to our health, and hence why I chose it as our first task in the STEPS program.
The task is this.....

Each day, aim to drink between 6-8 standard glasses of water.  

This will provide your body with roughly 1.5-2 litres of water.  Depending on how much you drink at the moment, you may find you are needing to go to the toilet a lot in the first couple of days, however as your body adjusts, this will ease - so don't give up just because you can't be bothered rushing to the toilet a few times a day!!

For those of you who either don't enjoy water, or don't currently drink much of it for one reason or another, here are some tips to achieve this first task.

  • Fill a drink bottle and have it with you wherever you go.  At your desk at work, in the car, in your bag.  If you have a 750ml-1Lt drink bottle, aim to finish it before lunchtime, and then again before dinner.  That way you won't be waking during the night needing the toilet!
  • If you don't enjoy drinking water, try squeezing some lemon, lime or orange juice into the glass.  Herbal teas and mineral water also count.
  • Keep track of how many glasses you and your family members have drunk by making a fun chart and placing it on the fridge, placing a sticker or stamp on the chart each time a glass is finished.  For little kids, it is imperative to keep their fluids up, so this is a fun way to achieve this.
This will be your focus for two weeks, starting today.  Keep in touch via Facebook and let me know how you are going!

For more interesting information on the importance of drinking water, read this informative article.


Come make STEPS with me!

The overwhelming response I have had from my blog so far have been the little changes that you are starting to think about to improve your and your families eating habits.  From adding chia seeds to your baked goods, to reading food labels and developing an awareness for brands that contain less additives.

However on the flip side, I know old habits die hard, and changes, although desperately wanted, are often not achieved. Why? Well the answer to that varies from one person to the next, but there seems to be one overarching factor. Too many changes at once!

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Pantry essentials for making healthy changes

If you're anything like me, you need practical, hands on advice/tips to help make changes in life.  Its an enabler to take me from thinking, 'yeah, I want to do that', 'thats what I want to incorporate into my life' to actually taking the steps and making the changes.

If you are in the situation whereby you read blogs like mine because you want to follow an actively healthy lifestyle, but months on you are pretty much eating the same foods, cooking the same way and exercising the same amount, then we need to shake things up a bit!