New Nutrition Goals

Coppell Trainer Tip

Jan 09

The dictionary defines a goal as “the end toward which effort is directed.” If you go through your day with no goal in mind, the day will be aimless. As the great baseball Hall of Famer Yogi Berra once said, “If you don’t know where you are going, you’ll end up someplace else.”

At the beginning of a New Year, most people reflect on goals—whether to assess the success of past goals set or to consider which goals they would like to set for the upcoming New Year.

Goals are often nutritional in nature, especially when health improvement is a focus. Below are some tips from Cooper Clinic Nutrition Services for setting and succeeding nutrition goals.

  1. When setting goals be specific. For example, if you desire to eat out less, specify what this might look like. If you normally eat lunch out all five days a week, specify that your goal is to bring lunch from home three times a week.
  2. Make sure you are also being realistic. For example, if weight loss is a goal, a healthy weekly weight loss is one to two pounds per week. So, if you have specified that you want to lose 20 pounds, be realistic in the time frame you want to lose this weight.
  3. Develop action plans to identify the necessary steps required in obtaining the goal. If your specific goal is to incorporate two fruit servings and three vegetable servings daily, consider these possible action plans to make it happen: I will have fruit on my morning breakfast cereal, and have one piece of fruit as part of an afternoon snack. I will have raw baby carrots and sliced bell peppers as a part of my lunch, and each evening with dinner I will have one cooked vegetable and one salad.
  4. Once you have determined a specific and realistic goal and the action plans necessary to reach the goal, you need to develop a means to measure this goal.  For example, if you have specified that you will begin incorporating fruits and vegetables into your daily meals, you can record your meals in food journal and easily keep track.
  5. Finally, be flexible with your goal. All goals are typically fueled with the best of intentions, but sometimes life can throw in a curve ball. There might be situations where you’ll need to re-evaluate and modify your goal. Do not allow yourself to lose the goal, just allocate some flexibility in your time frame or allow some change in the action plans that will permit progress towards your goal.

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