Monthly Health Message:

Small Steps Make a Difference

June 2007

Karen Ensle Ed.D., RD, FADA, CFCS
Family & Community Health Sciences Educator
Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Union County

A healthy lifestyle is made up of lots of small daily choices. What we choose to eat and whether we take time to exercise, for example. This is the whole premise of the Small Steps to Health and Wealth™ program. We believe that small behavior changes can do a lot over time to improve your health and personal finances.
Below are a few ideas of small steps that you can take to improve your eating habits by choosing to do things just a little differently. This information comes from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Web site smallstep.gov/step_2/step2_choices.html

If you normally...then try this instead!
use whole or 2% milkuse fat free milk
drink sodadrink diet soda or 100% juice
eat desserteat fruit for dessert
have second helpingsput the food away as soon as you serve
eat big portionseat off a smaller plate
eat a lot of white bread or pastago for a variety of whole-grain foods
use buttertry oils low in saturated fats
eat fast food on the roadpack fruits and vegetables for car rides
eat red meatPrepare lean cuts of beef or pork, skinless chicken or turkey, or fish
snack on chips and junk foodkeep fruits and veggies in the fridge instead
skip breakfasttry eating a healthy breakfast each day
fry your foodgrill or roast your food instead


  1. Rutgers
  2. Executive Dean of Agriculture and Natural Resources
  3. School of Environmental and Biological Sciences