7 Healthy Swaps that Add Up

By , SparkPeople Blogger
At SparkPeople, we strongly believe that the small, everyday choices you make can add up to something amazing. Healthy living isn't about making drastic changes all at once; it's about adding small pieces to the puzzle to end up with fantastic and sustainable results over time. No healthy choice is too small, either: See how these seemingly tiny changes can add up to better your health BIG time in the long run! Try adding some of them to your routine and see where they take you.    
  1. Need to eat more fruit? Add some sliced bananas to your cereal in the morning and fresh berries to your yogurt for a snack or as part of your lunch. If you eat two servings of fruit a day for a year, you will have enjoyed 730 servings of fruit!

  2. For a healthier meat choice, select a skinless chicken breast instead of one with skin. This will cut a quick 50 calories!  If you enjoy chicken three times a week, that’s a yearly savings of 7,300 calories.

  3. Wine is one of the lowest-calorie alcohol selections you can make. Save additional calories by diluting your wine with soda water to make a wine spritzer. A wine spritzer made with three ounces of wine only has 60 calories. One wine spritzer treat a week for a year only provides 3,120 calories, which can easily fit into a healthy and active lifestyle.

  4. Take back some of the household chores and claim the calorie boost that goes with them. Mowing your yard, raking leaves or washing the car for 20 minutes will burn about 100 calories. Say goodbye to your yard help, or cut out visits to the automatic car wash and do one of these activities yourself a dozen times this year. You will burn 1,200 calories and save at least $180 at the same time!

  5. Saving money can be easier than you think. Opt for free tap water at restaurants instead of a diet soda and save $2 on your tab (plus, you'll be foregoing artificial sweeteners). If you dine out twice a week, you’ll pocket more than $208 this year.

  6. Do you enjoy sandwiches? By swapping out the mayonnaise for mustard when ordering a hamburger or deli sandwich, you can save 54 calories. If you order one sandwich a week, this small change will save you 2,808 calories a year.

  7. A 150-pound person burns about five calories per flight of stairs. If you walk the three flights up to your office in the morning and after lunch instead of taking the elevator, you will burn an additional 30 calories each day. Do that every day you work all year and you will burn over 7,200 additional calories. That means you can lose two pounds a year just by skipping the elevator!

The next time you think about forgoing that ''insignificant'' healthy choice, remember that your desired results are a sum of hundreds (even thousands!) of small decisions that add up in a major way. Keep making those little tweaks and you WILL start reaping the benefits of a healthier life!
What small changes will you be making to reach your goals?

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RAZZOOZLE 2/15/2019
thank you Report
BUDDHAWOMAN0 11/4/2018
Like to walk. I didn't know this at all Report
KHALIA2 9/26/2018
I love walking! Report
KHALIA2 8/2/2018
Very good tips! Thank you! Report
AMBER461 5/4/2018
Excellent idea. Report
HOLLYM48 4/27/2018
Great ideas! Report
Great information! Report
I love taking the stairs instead of the elevator, Report
I agree with ordering water instead of soda to save money, adding fruit to meals and snacks, doing your own chores, eating your chicken without the skin, and taking the stairs instead of the elevator. If you don't like mustard, then you can save calories by putting ketchup, steak sauce, mashed avocado, Kraft fat free mayonnaise dressing, or Miracle Whip mayonnaise dressing (regular or lite) instead of full-fat real mayonnaise on your sandwiches and burgers. Grape juice diluted with seltzer water has even fewer calories than the same amount of wine diluted with seltzer water. Report
I park as far as I can from an entrance to where I'm heading. Report
Great info! Report
The more ideas to help me be successful the better. Report
I do fruit and stairs. I don't like mustard though. But will be implementing the water and many of these. Report
That' s why I walked up 12 stories today, and walked down 12 stories, too. Report
I took back vacuuming. my husband used to do it every weekend now I try to vacuum two times a week. Fun!! Report
My treats are now nonfat yogurts instead of ice cream or candy. Report
Some of those things I already do.... but I LOOOOVE the idea for the wine!! Never thought of it!! But it is a great way to cut on the calories!! :)
As for the swap of mustard for mayo... they really don't taste the same.... but I read in the comments someone talking about greek yogurt!! I might just try that!! Plus it adds on the protein!! :D

Thanks for the ideas!!! :D Report
Great Ideas! I Always Put Some Type Of Fruit In My Oatmeal In The Morning To Get On A Jump Start On The Fruit And Vegetable Requirement. I Walk To Stores A Lot To Pick Up Items I Need. I Like Walking With A "Purpose" And I Prefer To Walk. Thanks A Lot! :) Report
I can see that by 'living simple' we can help stay fit....these are great hints. Report
I drink bottled water daily. My bottle is a reusable one that I fill up with filtered water from my taps. I save money and do not contribute to the plastic bottle problem.
I have knee problems so taking stairs is not my forte. I have started working out in the pool. The water takes a load off my feet while providing resistance training.
My next goal is to do my physio exercises daily. I have been a bit sporadic of late.
Thanks for sharing and expanding my knowledge. Report
I use hummus instead of mayo on wraps and sandwiches and my motto lately is: just do it. If there's a piece of trash before me, I reach down and pick it up. If it's an opportunity to expend calories and energy, I do it. If it means reaching extra high or low or moving a few more inches, I do it. I figure it all adds up! Report
I don't have a parking tag for college so I have to park in the "right next to the woods" parking lot, and wind up walking across the road and up several flights of stairs every other day.

Also I just got blueberries today to put in oatmeal. :-) Report
Good ideas. I usually try to take a few more steps, do a few more lifts, drink a little more water, etc as a general rule. Thanks for the reminder. There are still more things I can do. Report
I have started using greek yogurt with a tiny bit of mustard mixed in on sandwiches instead of mayo. Report
Five calories per flight? That's good to know. I run the stairs when my house is cold as a way to warm up... Report
My office is on the 4th floor so I am trying to take the stairs and not the elevator. Report
We need to think more about the whole picture.....one decision daily times a whole year. Awesome accumulative results. Report
Every step counts! Report
I don't worry about finding a close up parking place when I go shopping. the extra few steps of walking always helps. I also work from home and just went from part time to full time the beginning of the year. I try to use my morning and afternoon breaks to take care of cleaning chores that just weren't getting done before. Our house is a tri-level so I get lots of stair walking in! Report
I work from home but try to find ways not to sit all day...luckily, my bedroom is on the second floor as well as my family/craft room...22 steps up and down...I'm trying to keep moving! Report
I use the restroom on another floor of our builiding at work and I do squats or leg lifts while brushing my teeth and drying my hair. It's not much to do at the time, but I figure that it has to add up eventually. Report
I like to order a salad or soup and an appetizer at a restaurant. Most of the meals are way too much.
Good blog Report
Taking the stairs and it feels fantastic (after the first few days)...and I have 24 flights of stairs with 10 steps each to my office. Good stuff Report
Putting my peanut butter on celery or an apple instead of on bread or toast saves me 50-90 calories and gives me an extra serving of fruit and veggiesl. And a half TBL. is plenty. Be sure to measure.

Think in terms of halves when it comes to food -- one piece of toast (instead of two) or half an English muffin for breakfast, half a sandwich, half a baked potato, half an omelet, 1 1/2 pancakes instead of 3 for a serving, a tall skinny latte instead of a grande -- you get the picture. These are all small changes that add up to big losses in the weight department, and allow me to eat a full range of foods. Nothing is off limits. I can have half a serving of French fries or half a brownie, too.

By the way, my variation for 2013 is to double the activity portion of my lifestyle, too. More small changes. Report
Taking the stairs at work, fell better too. I have gotten other people to start doing it also. Report
Good Information. God Blessings to Everyone. Have a Wonderful Week. Take Care. Report
good info Report
Tomatoes lettuce and some pepperoncini will add all the tasty moisture you need to a sandwich. Report
This certainly has some great ideas and has me already looking at my daily and weekly activities. I think I can expand on these simple steps in the blog to make even more small changes to impact my journey to a new lifestyle. Report
Interesting. Report
good choices for so many reasons Report
My college student daughter saw a water bottle on a desk at her PT job. "Gee, we go fishing and our dog swims in that river," she said indicating the label on the water bottle. Now you know why I don't spend money on bottled water. Report
I call these HLCs -- Healthy Lifestyle Choices. Report
I would love to swap mustard for mayo, but mustard tastes so so bad, and mayo tastes exactly right for a sandwich. I've tried putting nothing and that is just very dry, so, so far mayo it is for my sandwiches. Thank goodness I rarely eat them. Report
Great swap ideas. I have been drinking plain tap water only for the last year. I love the savings in both the calories (I do not drink or eat anything with artificial sweeteners, so diet drinks are not for me) as well as the money saved. I also noticed that drinking plain water with my food lets me taste more of the food's flavors as there is no flavored drink to distract/cover up. Report
Thank-You! Report
Great info. Thank you for the blog. Report
I do some of these and it helps a lot. I also park farther away and when I go to the shopping center I walk the full length and back if I have time. Report
I always order water when I go out to eat. I can't justify paying $2.00 for soda with free refills. Report
Great swaps! I will be trying these! Report