Today's Small Step

Volunteer at your local school. There are opportunities for people to help with coaching sports teams or doing recreation with kids. This can be a great way to give back to the community and stay active at the same time.

Healthy Foods

Choose fruit and vegetables for snacks most of the time. Snacks high in sugar, fat and salt are not recommended.

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Fall Activity Challenge

Exercise Professional

Get free advice from the Physical Activity Line. Call 1-877-725-1149

Health Tips

  • Top your favourite whole grain cereal with fruit and yogurt.
  • Know your portions – not sure how many grains to eat in a day or how much dairy you really need? Click here for a copy of the Canada Food Guide and get your portions back on track.
  • Eat slower to consume fewer calories – when you feel physically full your stomach was probably truly full several bites before. Eat more slowly, give your brain a chance to know you are full.
  • Eat every two to three hours – eating every 2-3 hours helps to get your metabolism going, your blood sugars stable and reduces cravings.
  • Don’t drink your calories – be careful with calorie rich drinks like pop, sweetened teas, juice and specialty drinks. It is really easy to consume large amounts of calories and still feel hungry.
  • Choose foods that are lower in the glycemic index more often – lower GI foods are absorbed into your blood more slowly which helps to stabilize blood sugar levels. Click here for more information.
  • Choose healthier fats - canola oil, peanut oil, and olive oil, as well as avocados, nuts (like almonds, hazelnuts, and pecans) and seeds (such as pumpkin, sesame), unheated sunflower, corn, soybean, and flaxseed oils, and walnuts.
  • Have fish twice per week – healthy omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids are found in fatty fish such as salmon, herring, mackerel, anchovies, sardines, and some cold water fish oil supplements.
  • Try different types of protein – beans (black beans, navy beans, garbanzos, and lentils), nuts (almonds, walnuts, pistachios and pecans), soy products (tofu, soy milk, tempeh and veggie burgers).
  • Stick to the edges of the grocery store - In general, healthy eating ingredients are found around the outer edges of most grocery stores—fresh fruits and vegetables, fish and poultry, whole grain breads and dairy products.
  • Make your own frozen yogurt – instead of ice cream treats try freezing your favourite yogurt in a popsicle tray.
  • De-butter your popcorn – instead lightly spray your popcorn with olive oil and add a small amount of your favourite seasoning.
  • Make healthy french fries – cut up potato or sweet potatoes and place in your oven with a small amount of oil and herbs and spices.
  • Drink water first – feel hungry? You might be thirsty. When you feel hungry, drink a glass of water first, wait 10-15 minutes and if you are still hungry then have something healthy to eat.
  • Read the list of ingredients – did you know that the ingredients are listed in order of weight, from most to least? This means that the food contains more of the ingredients at the beginning of the list and less of the ingredients at the end of the list. Make sure the healthy ingredients are near the start of the list.
  • Add some color to your plate – eat at least one dark green and one orange vegetable each day.
  • Create your own, personal food guide - By entering personal information, such as age and sex, selecting various items from the four food groups and choosing different types of physical activities, you can create a tool that is customized just for you. Click here to get started.
  • Take your coffee/tea black – each teaspoon of sugar has 16 calories and one tablespoon of cream has 20 calories. If you take one of each per cup of coffee that is an extra 36 calories per cup. Over the course of a week that could be more than 1000 extra calories!
  • Start your day with cooked oats – oats are an inexpensive, filling, breakfast option. Whole oats can result in a reduction in cholesterol levels and may reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.
  • Try quinoa - quinoa is an excellent source of protein. It is low in fat and high in fibre. It also contains iron, potassium, riboflavin, B vitamins, magnesium, zinc, copper and manganese.
  • Limit foods that won't rot – foods that won’t rot when left on your counter likely have large amounts of chemicals and preservatives. Consume these foods in moderation and focus more on fresh, preservative free foods.
  • Fraser Health Authority’s Tobacco Reduction Coordinators are here to help you find the best free quit resources and direct you to local programs available for every age group.

  • Eat slower to consume fewer calories – when you feel physically full your stomach was probably truly full several bites before. Eat more slowly, give your brain a chance to know you are full.

  • Many people hold their breath as they lift. While this may be necessary when lifting extremely heavy objects, it can be dangerous. Breathe out as you lift.

  • After physical activity it is important to cool down. Your body needs muscle contraction to return blood to the heart. If you do not move when you finish exercise, you can often feel faint or dizzy. Plan on finishing each bout of physical activity with an easy walking (or equivalent) to let your body gradually return to normal.

  • Learn about nicotine withdrawal symptoms and how to cope with them. Click here to learn more.

  • Put home exercise equipment in front of the TV. This will help pass the time faster and you can get the exercise you need while not missing your favorite show.

  • It doesn’t matter how old you are or how long you’ve smoked. You become healthier and stronger each day you are tobacco free.

  • Today, shoe manufactures design footwear specifically for physical activity. Make sure that you have shoes that fit your chosen activity.

  • Find ways to manage your cravings – here are some tips to get you started.

  • Discover the financial cost of smoking – using this online tool you can quickly and easily calculate what smoking costs you each year, the next five years and the next 10 years. Just think about all the things you could do with that extra money! Click here to calculate the cost.

  • Why not be a nice person and get fit at the same time? Instead of driving around for 5 minutes to find the closest parking spot, park farther away and enjoy a brisk walk.

  • How addicted are you? Knowing how addicted you are can help you decide if you need extra support or whether you need stop smoking medications to help you quit. To have the best chance of successfully quitting, you need to know what you are up against. Take this online quiz.

  • Set short-term goals, not just long term goals. For example, if you have a long term goal to run the Sun Run and you are currently not doing anything, set a short goal of running 1 mile.

  • By making your car and home smoke-free, you are taking an important step in protecting you and others from secondhand smoke.

  • Limit foods that won't rot – foods that won’t rot when left on your counter likely have large amounts of chemicals and preservatives. Consume these foods in moderation and focus more on fresh, preservative free foods.

  • Going from not moving to intense physical activity is very hard on the body and can lead to injury. Take a few minutes for some gentle movements such as controlled arm circles and leg swings to warm-up the body. Start light and gradually increase the intensity of your exercise sessions.

  • You don't have to have fancy equipment to build strength. Just a simple pair of adjustable dumbbells and a bit of instruction can give you endless options to build strength and improve the quality of your life.

  • Many people do quick stretches, which have little to no benefit. Be sure to hold your stretches for about 30-60 seconds for optimal results.

  • Take your coffee/tea black – each teaspoon of sugar has 16 calories and one tablespoon of cream has 20 calories. If you take one of each per cup of coffee that is an extra 36 calories per cup. Over the course of a week that could be more than 1000 extra calories!

  • Tired of waiting for the elevator? Make a plan to use the stairs instead of taking the elevator and you’ll be surprised at how much more activity you get.

  • There is lots of variety with physical activity. Check out your local community recreation programs for lots of fun ways that you can get physically active.

  • Click here to get clear - make sure you know the facts about tobacco.

  • Look for community events such as walks and mini races. These can be fun and exciting and give you something to work towards.

  • Keep a bottle of water at your desk.

  • Structured exercise is great for improving fitness, but just moving is essential for health. Look for a combination of structured and non-structured activity to make up your daily physical activity plan.

  • If you are walking on sidewalks, be aware that they can be on a slant. Prolonged walking on a slant can cause hip and low back problems. Try to walk on level ground as much as possible. When not possible, try to spend equal time slanted each way.

  • Make healthy french fries – cut up potato or sweet potatoes and place in your oven with a small amount of oil and herbs and spices.

  • To quit smoking takes hard work and a lot of effort, but you can quit smoking. It will be one of the most important things you will ever do.

  • Check out www.humankinetics.com for great books and resources to learn more about your favorite physical activities.

  • Top your favourite whole grain cereal with fruit and yogurt.

  • Try different types of protein – beans (black beans, navy beans, garbanzos, and lentils), nuts (almonds, walnuts, pistachios and pecans), soy products (tofu, soy milk, tempeh and veggie burgers).

  • Listen to music while you exercise. Find songs that are energizing and you'll be surprise at how much longer you can go and how much harder you can exercise.

  • Watch less TV. Research shows that a high correlation between TV watching and obesity. Also, cutting down on television watching gives you more time to get active.

  • Add some color to your plate – eat at least one dark green and one orange vegetable each day.

  • Most people think of personal training as a luxury for the rich and famous. However, today, more and more people are getting into personal training. This offers the chance to get a program specifically tailored to your goals and specific needs.

  • Group fitness classes can be a fun way to get physical activity, meet new people and have a lot of fun at the same time. Check out your local fitness or recreation center for a class schedule.

  • Choose foods that are lower in the glycemic index more often – lower GI foods are absorbed into your blood more slowly which helps to stabilize blood sugar levels. Click here for more information.

  • Check out your local community recreation center. You will be amazed at how many different ways it offers to keep you in motion.

  • Hard to find time to exercise? Try exercising in the morning. This gets it done before the rest of the day’s responsibilities arise.

  • Choose healthier fats - canola oil, peanut oil, and olive oil, as well as avocados, nuts (like almonds, hazelnuts, and pecans) and seeds (such as pumpkin, sesame), unheated sunflower, corn, soybean, and flaxseed oils, and walnuts.

  • Balance technology – Walk to your co-worker instead of sending an e-mail, five minutes per hour, chat face to face, trashcan basketball, stretch. Work in a standing position when possible, sit on a stability ball.

  • What are your personal benefits and costs of smoking? Click here to find out.

  • Dress for success. Don't worry about the latest fashion, but make sure you are dressed appropriately for exercise. If the weather is colder, start with layers, then you can take off the outer layers as you get warmer. Look for loose, non-restrictive clothing that is comfortable. Cotton is a good option.

  • Meet a real quitter - The following British Columbians agreed to share their personal stories to help others quit smoking. Watch their videos and read their stories to see how they have successfully quit smoking. Their real-life experiences may inspire you to quit or remain tobacco-free. Click here to meet real people who have kicked their addiction.

  • Start a money jar with the money you save from not smoking and invest for a rainy day or buy yourself a gift or go for a nice dinner.

  • Join a sports team. This can be a fun way to stay active, meet people and add some excitement to your life. Just make sure that you have the fitness level to participate safely in your desired sport.

  • Ever notice that some people can eat all they want and never put on weight? Chances are these people have a high metabolism. Adding resistance training to your exercise regime builds lean muscle which raises your metabolism.

  • Know your portions – not sure how many grains to eat in a day or how much dairy you really need? Click here for a copy of the Canada Food Guide and get your portions back on track.

  • Visit the washroom one floor up or at the other end of the building.

  • Try something new. In our society, there are countless ways to be physically active. Find something you have never done before and give it a try.

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