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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 3, 2012
 
CONTACT
Leah Bucco-White, Communications and Legislative Services, 402-471-9356
Leah.bucco-white@nebraska.gov
 
Eat Healthy During the New Year
 
Lincoln — Now that the holidays are over and a new year is here, it’s a perfect time to focus on healthy eating.   Whether young or old, healthy eating can make a real difference in the way you feel today as well as your health in years to come.
 
“One of the key issues is that while most people typically gain a pound or two over the holidays, often times it isn’t lost afterward, contributing to overweight and obesity later in life,” according to Dr. Joann Schaefer, Director of the Division of Public Health in the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services.  “Weight gain typically occurs over many years, and added up, it’s easy to become at risk for serious health problems such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes and some cancers.”
 
Being overweight raises your risk for type 2 diabetes. Losing weight is one of the best things you can do to defend against diabetes and prevent other health problems.  If you need some motivation to shed those holiday pounds, take the online test at www.defendagainstdiabetes.ne.gov to find out if you are at risk.  If you are overweight, losing 7% of your body weight by making healthy changes in the way that you eat and being physically active is the best way to prevent or delay type 2 diabetes. 
 
Here are a few tips to get you started:
  • Eat more fruits and veggies.  Make half your plate fruits and vegetables.  Selecting a colorful variety of fruits and veggies is a key to healthy eating since they are naturally low in fat and high in vitamins and minerals.
  • Drink water instead of sugary drinks. Drinking too many sugary beverages (soda, energy drinks, sports drinks, sugar-sweetened juice drinks, etc.) can add too many calories, leading to weight gain and increasing the risk of diabetes.
  • Avoid oversized portions.  Check the labels on what you are eating and drinking to see how many calories are in each serving. Cut back on those high-calorie items or decrease your portion.  Eat off a smaller plate or split your meal in half at a restaurant and take the rest home.
Small changes over time can make a big difference in successful weight loss.  Start by making healthy food choices today!
 
For more information about proper nutrition and weight management, go to: