Contributed by Kenya T.

Over the years, my main New Year’s Resolution has been to lose weight. Hasn’t everyone at some time or another?  Like me you have probably tried dieting, joined gyms and been on fasts.  None of these seemed to work for me … at least in the long run.  With this history of frustration behind me, I decided this year to completely change my focus—I was going to accept my body for the way it is and just concentrate on my health, not my looks.

The first thing I did was to switch to eating whole wheat bread instead of white bread. Well it was horrible—gross, boring, bland bread. But I kept at it until I found a brand that I loved—one filled with nuts, oats and flax seed. Now eating whole wheat bread is a joy.

The next step was to drink more water.  I bought a reusable bottle and filled it up.  I put some rubber bands on the bottle and after I drank the whole thing I would move the rubber band up and fill up the bottle.  In addition to needing to go to the bathroom a lot, I had to get used to the taste (or lack of taste) of water, which, for someone who drank as much soda or juice as I did, was harder than I thought it would be. I missed my sweet drinks and, even rebelled for a bit, but never abandoned drinking water.  Soon I was drinking more water than sweet drinks and, before I knew it, I was opting for water more often and liking it!

In order to eat more fruits and vegetables, I made sure to pack a piece of fruit to eat with lunch or as an afternoon snack.  I also made sure that I had at least one vegetable with dinner and added different vegetables to my omelet in the morning.  This resolution gave me no problems. All I had to do was sit and think about what veggies and fruits I liked.  I also tried a bunch of new fruits like star fruit, dragon fruit and guava and liked them all.

My healthy eating has changed the way I think about my food choices.  Now I am more conscious of what I eat overall.  When I go out to eat with friends, I actually sit and think about what I am going to consume and how it will make me feel when I am done eating it, instead of thinking about how I will feel while eating it.  This thoughtfulness has rubbed off in other ways – I walk more, take the stair instead of the elevator and stretch in the mornings.  I feel better and lost a few pounds as well.  My next goal: to exercise more.

How have you been doing with your Health & Wellness New Year’s Resolutions?  Write in and tell us. Your progress might even become the focus of our next story in June.