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The 5 Must-Have Tools to Eat Healthier

The 5 Must-Have Tools to Eat Healthier

Every year, a new fad claims to give people perfect health … only to be on the outs again the next year. If you’ve tried one of these fad diets, you know they never really work. The only way to truly be healthy is to have a healthy lifestyle, which includes following a healthy, well-balanced diet.
It might seem like there are no real shortcuts to eating better, but there are tools that can make it a whole lot easier.
Here are five must-have tools that can help you start eating healthier today.

1. PlateJoy

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    If you want to eat better but don’t know where to start (or just don’t have the time to plan ahead), this personalized meal planning service does all the work for you, sending custom recipes tailored to your goals and time-saving shopping lists that make trips to the store a breeze. First, take the lifestyle quiz to add your tastes, fitness or weight loss goals, and time constraints. Then, get personalized recipes that are designed to fit your schedule and to minimize food waste, by using ingredients across multiple recipes. There are meal plans for every preference, including paleo, vegetarian, gluten-free, low carb, clean eating, no red meat, food allergies, pre-diabetes, and much more, as well as nutritional info that can be synced to your fitness tracker.

    2. Rise

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      This app pairs you with a nutrition coach, so you can learn how to change your dietary habits in order to become healthier. Take simple photos of your daily meals and exercises, and then share them with your coach. He or she will pinpoint problem areas in your diet, and work with you daily to help you get healthy. You will see results from a weight loss program that lasts and is tailored specifically to you.

      3. Lifesum

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      lifesum

        This app is a combination of technology and applied psychology, and uses personal preferences to help you have a healthier and happier life, by setting short-term, achievable goals on tracking your progress. This Stockholm-based health startup provides a platform that allows you to track your caloric intake and exercise schedule, as well as set weight loss goals and help keep you on track to better health through better eating habits. More than 14 million Android and iOS users have downloaded this tool to date and it has resulted in millions of success stories.

        4. Fooducate

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        fooducate

          This is your diet toolbox, and it helps you to track your progress and get more motivated to become even healthier. It actually goes beyond calories to really get down to what is going to help you to have a healthier diet. Scan barcodes to see the nutritional information of food products, learn about choosing healthier alternatives, and much more. Personalize it with your age, gender, weight, height, activity level, etc. Enter how much weight you want to lose and how quickly, find out how to reach your dietary goals, and even learn how to avoid MSG, GMO’s, HFC’s, etc. Fooducate also tracks your activity, sleep and mood.

          5. Lose It!

          lose-it

            This app was created with one thing in mind: to help others lose weight and keep it off, in a way that is healthy. No, there are no pills to take, and no crazy fad diets to follow. This is a program that is easy to use, and helps you to stay within your daily calorie limit. You can achieve actual weight loss without using any crazy gimmicks, and you don’t have to worry about a restrictive diet that is next to impossible to stick with. This app is the industry-leading digital health and fitness platform, centered around calorie tracking and community support.

            Featured photo credit: Brooke Lark via unsplash.com

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            Jane Hurst

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            Last Updated on January 21, 2020

            The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

            The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

            Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

            your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

              Why You Need a Vision

              Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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              How to Create Your Life Vision

              Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

              What Do You Want?

              The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

              It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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              Some tips to guide you:

              • Remember to ask why you want certain things
              • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
              • Give yourself permission to dream.
              • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
              • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

              Some questions to start your exploration:

              • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
              • What would you like to have more of in your life?
              • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
              • What are your secret passions and dreams?
              • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
              • What do you want your relationships to be like?
              • What qualities would you like to develop?
              • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
              • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
              • What would you most like to accomplish?
              • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

              It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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              What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

              Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

              A few prompts to get you started:

              • What will you have accomplished already?
              • How will you feel about yourself?
              • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
              • What does your ideal day look like?
              • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
              • What would you be doing?
              • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
              • How are you dressed?
              • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
              • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
              • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

              It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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              Plan Backwards

              It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

              • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
              • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
              • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
              • What important actions would you have had to take?
              • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
              • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
              • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
              • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
              • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

              Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

              It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

              Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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