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3 Things for Better Health - June 11

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Need to be motivated to start the week off on a healthy note? Just try one or more of three things to start the week on the right path.

1. There are three easy calorie-counting rules that will help people lose weight, reported. "Tracking calories is a safe way to slim down," Everyday Health stated, quoting from the authors of "My Calorie Counter" that sustained, healthy weight loss comes down to the basics: fewer calories plus more exercise. How many calories are needed comes down to age, sex, weight, height and physical activity. Women who want to lose weight should keep daily calorie intake between 1,200 and 1,500, according to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Everyday Health offers tips to cut calories: Drink water instead of orange juice for breakfast and save 112 calories, swap out 2 tablespoons of full-fat ranch dressing for fat-free Italian and save 128 calories or eat a half-cup of strawberries instead of the same amount of chocolate ice cream and save 130 calories. And think about portion sizes. Visualize a tennis ball as one cup of food and then put the serving on a smaller plate for a mental trick for the size component.

2. Try celery sticks with peanut butter as a pre-meal snack. suggests eating the combination an hour before a meal will mean consuming fewer calories and feeling more satisfied later.

3. Grab a jigsaw puzzle. Newsweek published a special "Your Body" edition recently with tips, advice and the details on the science behind living longer and better and healthier. One of the tips is to get into puzzles whether that's a crossword, a jigsaw puzzle or other brainteaser. Newsweek noted a new study finding people who read, write or do crosswords or other puzzles throughout their lives have "significantly less beta-amyloid protein, a major component of the brain plaque that's a marker of Alzheimer's" disease.

For more tips from the weekly Three Things list, check out the Monday Motivator page each week in the Dispatch or e-edition, or go to and go to lifestyle to reach the drop-down menu for health or search using the keyword Monday Motivator.

Questions or tips to share, contact Renee Richardson, managing editor, at or 218-855-5852.