Fitness + Well-being

Lose weight, reduce stress and lower your disease risk with these 6 habits

We asked nutritionists, personal trainers, yoga teachers and chefs across the country to share the top habits that set the stage for a healthy day. Follow just a few of these tips, and your routine may get that much healthier.

1. Start the day with a warm cup of tea.
This is the go-to morning starter of Marisa Moore, MBA, RDN, owner of Marisa Moore Nutrition in Atlanta, Georgia. “Whether it’s a cup of matcha or chai, my morning cup of tea helps me settle into the day with focus and intention,” she told Fox News. “The mental alertness is a bonus to the other potential health benefits, including an immune system boost and potential lower risk for heart disease and stroke, as well as certain cancers.”

2. Eat a filling breakfast.
“I start out my mornings with my Loaded Oatmeal with SunButter,” Natalie Rizzo, MS, RD, a sports nutritionist in New York City, told Fox News. “It’s the perfect way to start the day because the fiber-filled oats keep me full throughout the morning. Plus, a dollop of SunButter (aka sunflower butter) has as much protein, more magnesium, vitamin E, zinc, and iron, and less saturated fat than traditional nut butters — and it’s completely free of the top eight allergens like peanuts and tree nuts. This nutrient-rich meal powers me through the busiest of mornings.” 

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3. Ditch the tech, at least for a little.
“My life completely changed when I started practicing what I affectionately call ‘the sandwich philosophy,’ said

Annessa Chumbley, RD, a nutritionist in Indianapolis, Indiana, who told Fox News she doesn’t look at any technology for the first and last hour of her day. “Before practicing this, my alarm would go off — and I’d roll over, grab my phone and start scrolling. I was immersing myself immediately into a swamp of noise: news, e-mails, other people's opinions, and comparisons. That noise was walking with me the rest of my day, like a constant unwanted companion I couldn't get rid of. When I first launched the philosophy, I worried I wouldn't get as much accomplished. Guess what? It was completely the opposite! I was able to get twice as much accomplished. I had purpose in the first hour and perspective in the last, and it changed everything.”

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4. Embrace eggs.
“I stopped eating only egg whites and now enjoy an egg a day,” Erin Palinski-Wade, RD, a certified diabetes educator, personal trainer, and author of “Belly Fat Diet For Dummies,” told Fox News. “Since heart disease runs in my family, I have always been very careful about what I eat and the impact it may have on future risk of disease. I used to avoid the yolk, but we now know whole eggs are not off limits. In fact, a study in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition shows that up to one egg per day is associated with a 12 percent reduction in the risk of stroke, the fifth leading cause of death in the United States.” Have a veggie omelet for breakfast or dinner, or add a hardboiled egg to a lunchtime salad.

5. Practice yoga — in some form.
“Every day I try to do some yoga, whether it’s a 75-minute yoga class at a studio or 30 minutes on my mat at home,” said Keri Gans, MS, RDN, a nutritionist, certified yoga teacher, and author of “The Small Change Diet.” “There are days, though, that neither are possible. Those are the days I really make an effort to take my practice off the mat. Feeling compassion for others and myself, finding my breath during stressful moments, and being 100 percent present in the moment are all forms of yoga, too.”

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6. Take a stretch and breath break.
“Whether you have a physically active job like mine or spend most of your day sitting at a desk, you’ll benefit from re-energizing breaks,” said Julie Hartigan, a professional chef in Hoboken, New Jersey. “A simple series of stretches for tension-holding areas (think neck, upper back, and arms), combined with a few minutes of conscious deep breathing can make you feel like a new person ready to tackle that to-do list. Set a timer on your phone every few hours as a reminder.”

Amy Gorin is freelance writer and owner of Amy Gorin Nutrition in Jersey City, NJ. Connect with her on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest.