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Smart Choices for the New Year

Simple and delicious ways to enjoy healthier meals

Posted: January 5, 2010 5:22 p.m.
Updated: January 6, 2010 4:55 a.m.

Savory Smoked Turkey and Blue Cheese Salad Serving Size: 2 1 8-ounce package Hormel Natural Choice smoked deli turkey, cut into strips 4 cups bite-size pieces red leaf lettuce 4 cups bite-size pieces romaine lettuce 6 ounces blue cheese, crumbled 1 tart, crisp apple, thinly sliced 1/2 cup candied pecans Prepared vinaigre...

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Leading a healthier lifestyle doesn't have to mean making dramatic changes. It means making smarter choices.

Looking and feeling better starts by making conscious choices every day that may be small, but will add up in the end. Here are some simple tips and recipes that will help you make smarter food choices so that you can truly live better.

Add a Fruit or Vegetable to Every Meal. When you add a little bit here and there, before you know it you'll be eating your five cups of fruits and veggies a day without even thinking about it. Here are some simple ways to increase your intake:

* Lighten up your cheese omelet by adding fresh tomatoes, onions and avocado.

* Fill your sandwich with crunchy veggies such as green peppers and cucumber slices and add a pickle on the side.

* Keep mid-afternoon cravings at bay by stashing a bag of baby carrots or sugar snap peas in your office refrigerator for
a healthy snack.

* Satisfy your sweet tooth by tossing a handful of frozen berries on top of your frozen yogurt.

Choose Smart Staples. Many families have a set of go-to ingredients they purchase on each trip to the grocery store. It only takes small adjustments to your current grocery list to achieve a better-for-you mix of foods and beverages. Try these easy tips: 

* Low fat or fat-free plain yogurt is an ideal choice because it's often higher in calcium than other dairy products and is a good source of protein and potassium. 

* When buying deli sandwich meat, going all natural is a great way to cut down on additives and preservatives.

For example, Hormel Natural Choice deli sandwich meats are free of preservatives and artificial colors and flavors so they taste the way meat is supposed to taste: fresh and full of flavor.

* Instead of drinking sugary sodas and juices, quench your thirst with tea. Whether you drink it hot or cold, unsweetened tea is calorie-free and loaded with antioxidants.

Lighten Up Lunch. Start a "Lunch Bunch" at work where members take turns bringing in a healthy lunch item for the group.

Healthy lunch clubs are an excellent way to experience foods that are new and different and also good for you. Share recipes and make sure you know ahead of time about any food preferences or allergies that group members may have.
For more tips and recipes visit


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