As we ring in another new year, healthy habits are again top of mind. Replacing unhealthy eating habits with healthier ones can be difficult, but starting small will help make this more manageable and sustainable in the end. Start with one simple change and stick to it for a week. After mastering one change, add another.

Some ideas to get you started:

  • Eat breakfast.
  • Replace one sugary drink per day with a glass of water.
  • Eat one to two more fruits or vegetables each day.
  • Plan a healthy snack for each day of the week.
  • Switch to a low-fat version of one of your favorite foods.
  • Plan three meals and two snacks every day.
  • Plan as many home-cooked meals as you can, as they usually have fewer calories, more reasonable portions and cost less than typical meals eaten at restaurants.

Apply healthy habits elsewhere

The great thing about habit-forming behaviors is that once you get into the groove, you can easily apply the same methods to other areas of small step at a time. If you want to get your finances in order by budgeting or by paying down debt, or if you want to increase your daily activity, or spend more quality time with loved ones, just take one manageable bite at a time. If you stick with healthy habits, then imagine the results you'll see in one month, a quarter, a year, etc. Make 2018 your year—you got this!

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