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Healthy Steps: Count Those Calories!

Getting fit is easy as 1-2-3 when you utilize modern technologies and local support!

When it comes to being superheroes, women have it covered! Well, in almost every aspect. A lot of women tend to sacrifice their own nutrition and diet in favor of other, seemingly more important activities (like getting the kids to eat their vegetables). But ladies, the dreaded “diet” word doesn’t have to be your kryptonite.

There are simple, smart ways to not only keep track of what you’re putting into your body, but also keep yourself on target for getting fit. Because it’s not just about dropping those excess pounds, it’s about dropping them in a safe way. Thankfully, with a community that is growing more supportive of healthier lifestyles and a variety of calorie-counting phone apps, women in Bakersfield have the fitness road partly paved for them!

As with any other lifestyle change, you don’t want to go into a new way of eating without guidance. After all, you don’t want to run the risk of hurting yourself in some way by starving your body of much-needed nutrients (and that can happen even when you think you’re eating healthy). When it comes to altering what you eat, a dietician can be your best friend, as well as a guiding light to help you through the entire process. Diane Campbell is a local registered dietician, and she was able to share some crucial advice on common pitfalls you need to be aware of.

“The first mistake a lot of people make when they’re about to go on a diet is they start skipping meals, like breakfast,” Campbell began. “That is a huge mistake. Breakfast literally breaks the fast [that your body was in while you slept], and it can increase your metabolism by ten percent. Never skip it.”

When you are preparing your meals, be sure that they are balanced with foods that contain whole grain carbs, lean protein, fruits, and vegetables. A good way to do this is by utilizing the plate method, which Campbell explained as making half of your plate fruits and veggies, with emphasis on the latter. The other half is split into two, so a quarter is for your lean protein and the remaining quarter will be for your carbs. “A lot of people have too many carbs and too little protein,” Campbell cautioned.

She advises people to go for complex carbs, which are rich in fiber. Citing that people lean toward high carb breakfasts, she also recommended to keep boiled eggs, natural peanut butter, or even a handful of nuts available. Try eating small meals every three to four hours. Also, keep a food journal and track everything that you eat. “This is the number one tool dieticians use, and it works,” Campbell said. Most importantly, make small, achievable changes. (More advice can be found on her blog at www.therealrd.com.)

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