7 Great Tips for Improving Your Health

7 Great Tips for Improving Your Health

Simple healthy habits you can start right now

Change doesn’t have to be hard. Bananas blow bear paws away, guys. A few small changes throughout your day can lead to big improvements in your energy level, mood, and overall health.

Forming healthy habits can be as easy as swapping sugary breakfast cereal with oatmeal, drinking lots of water, swapping fries for salad when having lunch with the guys, parking a few extra blocks from the office, drinking only one or two beers after work (instead of four or five), and keeping electronics out of the bedroom.

A Healthy Day in Your Life — A few little changes make a big difference in your overall health.

  1. Morning

    Breakfast like a champion: A hearty serving of oatmeal and eggs prevents hunger pangs before lunch. The same can’t be said for sugary cereals, which add to your waistline and can increase the risk of type 2 diabetes.

  2. All day long

    Drink plenty of water: Polishing off five tall glasses between breakfast and dinner makes you more alert and helps manage your weight. You’ll pee like a racehorse, but that’s good too because you’re flushing toxins from your body.

  3. Mid-morning

    Ditch doughnuts, go bananas: Bananas blow bear paws away when it comes to handling pre-lunch hunger. Plus, they boost your energy like nobody’s business. How do you think King Kong made it up the Empire State Building?

  4. Lunch

    Half fries, half salad: Swapping fries for a salad — or going with the old half-and-half compromise — keeps you from crashing hard in the afternoon or feeling like your belt is about to burst.

  5. After work

    Walk this way: Half an hour of physical activity five days a week works wonders for your health, and it’s easy to walk your way there. Get off the bus a few stops early and hoof it home. Or swap your work boots for sneakers and head for a local park. Slap on some headphones, fire up your favourite tunes, and let the good times roll!

  6. Evening

    Drink and be merry: Because it sends stress packing, enjoying a cold one (or two) with your buddies is actually good for you! But don’t get carried away — after all, who wants to wake up with an empty wallet and a hangover?

  7. Bedtime

    For a good night’s sleep actually go to sleep: No way you can sleep in? No problem: Shutting down earlier gets you more shut-eye, while turning off the TV and keeping laptops and other distractions out of the bedroom helps you sleep better. Do the sleep math: Quality plus quantity equals more energy and better concentration throughout your day.

What does your healthy day look like? Share your tips in the comments below.

This article was originally published on June 8, 2018.

Are you thinking about making healthy changes?

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Can pizza get any better? It can — on the BBQ!

Can pizza get any better? It can — on the BBQ!

Have you tried cooking pizza on the barbecue? It really is a perfect match.

On one hand, you probably love pizza. It accounts for 14% of all dinners in Canada, after all. On the other, you probably love barbecuing, with nearly nine out of 10 Canadians firing up the grill at least once a week in summer.

Since you’re cooking your pie using this fun and fiery new method, why not switch up the ingredients to make the whole thing more healthy? Even better, with this easy-to-prepare recipe, you get to barbecue some of the ingredients that go on the pizza. We’re talking next-level stuff here people!

Grilled barbecue chicken pizza

You will need:

  • A gas barbecue with at least two burners
  • 1 frozen whole-wheat pizza crust
  • 1 small bottle of barbecue sauce
  • 1 boneless chicken breast
  • 1 small red onion
  • 1 bell pepper
  • 1 cup of grated low-fat mozzarella cheese
  • A pinch of black pepper and dried oregano
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil

Step 1: Preheat your gas grill. Using tongs and an olive oil-soaked cloth, wipe the grill to prevent food from sticking.

Step 2: Grill the chicken breast while brushing it with barbecue sauce.

Step 3: While the chicken is cooking, chop up as many slices of red onion and bell pepper as you like.

Step 4: Remove the cooked chicken from the grill and dice it up. Sample a few pieces because, you know, you need to make sure it’s good!

Step 5: Evenly spread barbecue sauce over the pizza crust and cover it with onion, peppers and chicken. Sprinkle the mozzarella on top of everything. Shake some black pepper and dried oregano on there.

Step 6: Turn off half of your barbecue’s burners — turn off two on a three-burner grill — wipe the grill with oil (again) where the burners are extinguished, and lay the pie down on that spot. Close the ‘cue, and check on your creation every couple of minutes. When the crust starts to turn brown and the cheese is bubbling, remove the pizza and let it cool before digging in.

Take a bite, and you’ll see that great taste and healthy ingredients are as good a match as pizza and the grill. Pretty much any pizza topping, from olives and mushrooms to pineapple rings and tomato slices, work well on the barbecue. So say it with us: “Gentlemen, start your barbies!”

Who Needs Diets When These 3 Food Swaps Work Wonders?

Who Needs Diets When These 3 Food Swaps Work Wonders?

Replacing unhealthy foods with healthy ones is an easy way to lose weight and feel better

So many complicated diet plans, so little time. That’s why food and drink swaps work so well for dropping pounds. Every time you reach for any of the fatty, sugary or doughy foods and beverages listed below, simply swap it out for the healthier alternative. In every case, option B is just as tasty and satisfying, and choosing it will make a big difference to your waistline and your overall health in the long run.

 

Whole grain bread

Whole-grain bread instead of white bread

White bread is stripped of a lot of nutrients before it’s even baked. Whole-grain bread, on the other hand, is still full of bran and germ, which contain vitamins, minerals, healthy fats, protein, and fiber.

Club soda

Club soda instead of pop

Drinking just one can of pop accounts for nearly all of your recommended daily intake of sugar. Club soda has the same satisfying fizzy taste, but without the empty calories. For some added zing, squeeze in some citrus juice.

Delicious bowl of nuts and fruit

Nuts instead of potato chips

Kick the salty, fatty chip habit by replacing them with almonds or cashews. Nuts contain healthy fats and more fiber and nutrients than potato chips, so you can eat less and stay full for longer.

Grilled Broccoli: Tasty and Good for You, too!

Grilled Broccoli: Tasty and Good for You, too!

It’s barbecue season. Do you crave that smoky flavour, but want to maintain a healthy diet?

You can have both with our grilled broccoli recipe. Crunchy, delicious, grilled to perfection… you’ve never had veggies like these before!

And broccoli is high in calcium, too. Eating broccoli is an excellent way to prevent osteoporosis in men, a disease that affects bone density and increases the risk of fractures. Maintaining a healthy diet as a young adult helps reduce the risk of developing problems related to osteoporosis later in life.

Want to avoid fractures? To the grill, fellas!

You will need:

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil + extra for the grill
  • 2 large broccoli heads (1 cm trimmed off the end and stem peeled)
  • 1/4 cup grilled peanuts, coarsely chopped
  • A handful of fresh basil, chopped
  • Pinch of salt

Seasoning Sauce:

  • 1/4 cup fish sauce (available in grocery stores)
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar (light or dark)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

Instructions:

  1. Preheat your gas or charcoal grill. Using tongs and an oil-soaked cloth, wipe the grill with oil to prevent food from sticking.
  2. Combine fish sauce, brown sugar and lime juice in a bowl and blend or whisk until sugar is dissolved.
  3. Cut broccoli heads into 8 cm florets, leaving stems long. In a large bowl, toss broccoli and oil. Add a pinch of salt. Toss again.
  4. Cook broccoli on the hottest section of the grill. Turn over occasionally until tips are blackened and florets are al dente (which means cooked and firm – still has some crunch). Remove from heat and transfer to a serving dish.
  5. Pour seasoning over the broccoli. Garnish with chopped peanuts and basil. Add salt to taste.
Maple Syrup: Our Pride and Our Health

Maple Syrup: Our Pride and Our Health

Maple is truly the pride of Canadians; its leaf is our emblem, and its syrup delights our taste buds.

Canada is the world’s main maple syrup producer, accounting for over 70% of the market. Maple products are even offered as diplomatic gifts to foreign dignitaries. It’s not for nothing that we say “as Canadian as maple syrup”!

But apart from maple syrup’s smooth taste and its undeniable contribution to the Canadian economy… did you know that maple also has incredible health benefits?

  • Maple syrup has a lower glycemic index than sugar. That means that it increases your blood glucose level less than refined sugar or corn syrup does. If you replace sugar with maple syrup, your pancreas won’t have to work as hard and will therefore tire less. Ultimately, this may reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
  • Maple syrup and maple water contain polyphenols. These antioxidants help reduce the risk of developing cardiovascular disease and help prevent obesity.
  • Quebecol, a molecule that is only found in maple syrup, was named for Quebec – the Canadian province that produces the most maple syrup – and has anti-inflammatory properties. Discovered in 2011, researchers are still investigating this molecule, but in the long term, it could be used to counter joint pain. Why not have a sweet taste of syrup and a big glass of maple water to help with back pain?

Provided that you stocked up in spring during your visit to the sugar shack, now is the time to make yourself some healthy treats using maple syrup. Here is a super easy recipe for banana crepes that you can cover with golden nectar.

Eating healthy is easy with our maple syrup!

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