LIFESTYLES by Ronda Gates Weekly Message
Weekly Gems from Ronda Gates.

Guidelines That Still Work

When I first entered the corporate health promotion business, one of the leading edge companies providing exemplary programming for their employees was Pepsico. Recently the company published results of a survey they sponsored that asked women how they were approaching New Year's Resolutions. It showed they were "striving for better balance" in their diet and fitness routine. This is in concert what marketing analysts are also discovering-that interest in the low carb phenomenon is waning (sales are down 32 percent) and fad diets are being ignored in favor of choices that focus on healthy lifestyle.

Personally, I don't need a survey to know this welcomed shift is occurring. The questions consumers ask me affirm their interest in choosing healthy habits and making their resolutions for better health a reality. They tell me they are confused by overwhelming nutrition labels. "Just tell me what to do and what to buy."

If you have spent any time with me you know that's not my style. Although I can offer suggestions, I prefer to provide accurate information that allows you to make choices in keeping with your lifestyle, your food preferences, and the exercise strategies you enjoy. The guidelines you'll read below are not new. They are tweaked in that I have taken advantage of the expert advice I acquired as I revamped my weight management strategy in 2004 for a residential weight management program. Here's a review of those ten guidelines. Know that the more you adopt, the more successful you will be.

  • 1. Set SMART goals (see archived newsletters at for deciphering the SMART acronym),
  • 2. Understand that your metabolism is key-it's pumped by exercise that includes strength training and a healthy diet that meets caloric needs and is compromised by fad diets
  • 3. Eat the Smart Target way. That's lower in fat (especially saturated and trans fats), lower in sugar (instead of glycemic index use glycemic load), higher in fiber (whole grains and soups before lunch and dinner) and balance and variety. (See for the poster and eating strategy.
  • 4. Log 10,000 steps a day and add exercise that improves coordination, flexibility and balance.
  • 5. Identify supporters who provide non-judgmental accountability,
  • 6. If you can't avoid stress, learn and use healthy techniques to manage it.
  • 7. Accept that there will be lapses that can be opportunities for learning vs. self judgement
  • 8. Learn and use cognitive strategies to improve your mental health when it comes to food-related issues.
  • 9. Be a savvy consumer. Don't blindly accept everything you read or hear. (Quackery guidelines are also archived at
  • 10. Nurture your spirit with activities that assure you live in keeping with a life that actualizes your potential instead of your ego. That includes counting your blessings and learning you're your mistakes.

May your 2005 be filled with balance.

Weekly Messages Lifestyles

LIFESTYLES by Ronda Gates
1378 Casada Ct, Leisure World
Mesa, AZ 85206
Phone: 480-242-4812
Web Site Design by JDL Design