Reston Hospital Center - August 21, 2018

Losing weight is the best way to boost your heart health but extreme diets and lifestyle changes are often too much change to keep up long-term. Instead, make some of these small changes, gradually, to improve your risk of developing heart disease through a healthier lifestyle.

  • Eat eggs for breakfast instead of whole grains. The full feeling can help you eat fewer calories all day long.
  • Drink black coffee or green tea. The caffeine can boost your metabolism and increase fat burning.
  • Switch to coconut oil. The fat is metabolized differently than other oils or butter and it boosts your metabolism
  • Cut out added sugar. Drink your coffee or tea unsweetened, and instead of soda, drink water the rest of the day.
  • Read labels. Watch for sugar hiding in cereals, condiments and snacks as well as in refined carbs like breads and pasta.
  • Use smaller plates for dinner. It’s automatic portion control.
  • Brush your teeth immediately after dinner to avoid snacking later.
  • Park in the last row – always. Then sneak in extra steps just to get to the door.
  • Likewise, always take the steps instead of the elevator.
  • Stand at your desk – it burns more calories than sitting.
  • Sit on the floor to watch TV or play video games – it will encourage you to stretch and adjust more and to sit for less time.
  • Start your day with a plank – set a goal of 20 seconds, then increase by 5 seconds each day.
  • End your day with a squat – deep bending is great for hips and ankles. Start with 1 minute and increase to 10.
  • Do tiny workouts all day long. Waiting for the shower to warm up? Do push-ups against the counter. Watching the news? Knock out 5 minutes of jumping jacks. Stuck in the car? Work your buttocks by squeezing and releasing.
  • Stretch. Stretch to increase flexibility.
  • Set a goal to burn 500 calories every day. Use an online calculator, like myfitnesspal.com by Under Armour, to estimate what you’ll need to do to hit 500.

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