Losing weight can be challenging for busy nurses. Long days, tons of stress, and sugary temptations—from goodies kept in bowls on desks to carb-loaded snacks coworkers bring for celebrations—can make it difficult to lose unwanted inches and pounds. A healthy weight can help you prevent or manage diseases and other conditions, boost your body image, and give you more energy. Here are 9 habits to make part of your daily routine to curb calories:

1. Eat a healthy breakfast. 

Protein and healthy fats such as avocado and eggs are more filling than sugary food. Breakfast will help you think and perform better at work.

2. Bring lunch. 

Grab-and go-meals may taste good, but do you know what’s in them? Make your own meals (organic if possible) to allow you to control ingredients, cut calories, and save money. Add protein and nuts to your salads to make them tastier.

3. Get a work partner.

An accountability partner on the job can provide that extra motivation to stay on track. Set a weekly weigh-in goal and check in with each other.

4. Add healthy snacks. 

Raw almonds, seeds, a boiled egg, and fruit can easily be stashed in your bag, drawer, or the office fridge. Stay prepared to avoid vending machine snacks.

5. Take the stairs. 

Increase your heart rate by climbing up the steps. Research shows taking the stairs can help keep your brain young. Make the elevator a rare option.

6. Practice portion control.

Eat a sensible amount of food to stave off hunger. Even if you slip, instead of a slice of a coworker’s birthday cake, stop at a couple of bites or split it. Chances are someone in the office is trying to cut calories, too.

7. Keep a food journal. 

Writing down daily meals and drinks provides an honest look at food habits. It’s a tool to keep track of calories and make changes to achieve your goals.

8. Do a daily walk.

Get outside for fresh air. Aim for at least 30 minutes or 5,000 steps. Even if it’s just 10 minutes at a time, walking will provide a break and boost your energy while reducing stress. Use part of your lunch to get some steps in.

9. Drink water.

Often, overeating stems from thirst and not hunger. Set your cell phone alarm to remind yourself to drink throughout the day. The extra trips to the restroom mean more steps. Dehydration can also make you feel drowsy and sluggish.

Losing weight won’t happen overnight. But practicing these healthy habits will move you closer to your goal, which will improve your overall health.

Robin Farmer

Robin Farmer covers health, business, and education as a freelance journalist. Visit her online at www.RobinFarmerWrites.com.

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