These tips are a good way to check in with your daily habits and review what you are already doing and help you find easy solutions to make positive changes that can support your healthy living goals.
Stay hydrated = how do you know if you are dehydrated? What does it feel like? How much water do I need to drink every day? There is often no blanket statement to these questions as the human body is diverse and individuals needs change from person to person for lots of different reasons. However, humans are made up of 70% water and we easily excrete this liquid from our body throughout the day via sweat, urine, bowel motions and bodily fluids. So it is essential to make sure we are replenishing our water reserves daily.
A good rule of thumb is to aim for about 6-8 glasses of water per day for adults and about half that for children. Carrying a water bottle around with you is a good way to get extra water in. Often when we feel hungry we can be thirsty as well, so it can help to have a glass of water about 5-10 mins before you are thinking about eating to make sure you are staying hydrated and your hunger isn’t masking dehydration.
Being careful not to drink large amounts of water with food is important as well so that you do not dilute the stomach acids in your digestive tract that are designed to break down food and absorb nutrients into your body.
Reduce caffeine intake to 1-2 cups per day, always drink extra water when drinking caffeine as it is a diuretic and can cause you to lose more water.
Reduce alcohol as this is also dehydrating to the body system. Aim to have 3 alcohol free days in a row per week and no more than 2 serves of alcohol per day. A standard serve of alcohol is about 100mls, which is the size of a small glass.
- Use Healthy food guidelines and serving sizes to balance your food intake.
- Increase your fruit and vegetable intake to at least 2 serves of fruit per day and 5 serves of vegetables per day.
- Eat regular meals – don’t skip meals – and always eat a healthy breakfast
- Reduce processed and refined foods from your diet, this includes most foods that you will find in a bakery or in a packet like lollies, chocolate, biscuits, cakes, pastries, soft drinks, chips, pies, sausage rolls and other takeaways.
Please note that this is a guide ONLY and food requirements can differ between people for many reasons including; pregnancy, breastfeeding, health conditions, chronic disease, specific training, specific medications, ethnic and genetic background, age and more.