How to set realistic diet, exercise goals for the new year

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GREENVILLE, NC (WITN) - A new year is approaching, which means it's time to start thinking about New Year's resolutions.

Photo: CDC / Amanda Mills

For many, a healthier lifestyle is usually on the top of the list.

Bronson Cline, an exercise specialist at Vidant Wellness Center, stopped by the WITN studio Monday morning to offer some tips on how to set realistic goals and sustain them.

Diet

1. Avoid boxed foods and look for fresh produce instead. Fresh produce helps increase your fiber and reduces your risk of developing chronic disease.

2. Don't drink your calories. Cut out drinks with added sugars and opt for water instead.

3. Limit fats that are solid at room temperature, including meats, butters, cheeses and other dairy fats.

Experts say following these three tips will reduce your body weight, which ultimately reduces your risk for chronic diseases.

Exercise

1. Exercise for 150 minutes per week or just over 20 minutes per day. This can include walking, biking or swimming.

2. If you do not have a gym membership, consider going for a walk outside or utilizing any stairs in your home for a workout.

Cline says challenging yourself now will lead to permanent change over time.