The end of the 6-Week Slim-Down is quickly approaching, and though I'm satisfied with my results I'm worried how I'll fare long term. Healthy eating and exercise has almost become habit, but how do I maintain this attitude when I'm no longer attached to a program that reminds me to get healthy? I checked in with Tina Stewart again, dietitian at Loblaw Companies Limited, to ask her advice on keeping a healthy diet for the long haul. She shares her answer to a few of my questions below. [caption id="attachment_2447" align="aligncenter" width="293" caption="It'll be hard to remember to do healthy things without the weekly reminder, but a few sticky notes around my desk will help!"] [/caption] Q: What are some tricks for maintaining healthy eating long term? A: The first step is to acknowledge that healthy eating is a way of life and not a fad or a diet. It is important to focus on variety and balance and to remember the old adage 'everything in moderation.' All foods can fit, and I often advise clients to focus more on the foods they should include often such as vegetables and fruits instead of focusing on what they think they cannot have. The occasional indulgence is perfectly acceptable as long as you eat healthy most of the time. Healthy eating does not happen by accident, so it is important to plan your meals and snacks. Meal planning and shopping lists are very helpful to keep you on track. Experiment with new ingredients and flavours to keep things interesting. Q: Will healthy eating change the way we feel? A: Absolutely! Healthy eating that focuses on variety and balance helps your body to function optimally. A well fueled body is able to help maintain your energy levels, help you think and sleep better, and potentially ward of sickness. You need to put the right fuel into your body to get the best performance! Q: What are some of your favourite healthy snacks? A: My favourite healthy snacks tend to be simple and easy to prepare. As a busy Mom to two boys, I need things that I can grab and go. At work, I like to have apples and peanut butter or Greek yogurt and granola. Nuts and dried fruits are also a great portable snack. At home when I have more time to prepare snacks, cut up vegetables with a high protein dip are a great way to boost energy levels. A great high protein dip can be made with Greek yogurt mixed with my favourite reduced fat dressing. Another favourite is reduced fat cheese and whole grain crackers. A good tip for portion control is to keep cheese strings or other pre-portioned cheese on hand. They are a great addition to any lunch bag and can be paired with fruit for a mid-morning or afternoon snack. I'm so happy I checked in with Tina. Healthy eating long term and on the go seems like a breeze! What are your tricks for eating healthy?