The new year is almost here, and you've decided to start 2019 off with a weight release challenge.

Releasing weight should never mean starvation or pain. Begin the new year by using the following 10 steps to achieve a healthy, new, and improved body.

First, before you start any weight release program, make an appointment with your general practitioner and get a complete physical. Once you know the condition of your health, you can appropriately plan. If you have no idea where to start, this will help.

1. Start with a detox colon cleanse. Most people are not aware that in order to improve digestion, clear the complexion, and alleviate bad breath, they should have regular bowel movements -- from two to three times a day. This is normal! If you are not eliminating once a day or (God forbid!) once a week, you could be accumulating an average of 7-10 pounds or more of extra waste in your system.

2. Drink pure water -- six to eight 12-ounce glasses a day. Drinking pure water flushes out the toxins in the body. Disorders and diseases from gastritis, stress, high blood pressure, weight gain, elevated cholesterol, asthma, allergies, insulin-dependent diabetes, and numerous other health problems may be avoided or greatly improve just by drinking enough pure water.

3. Avoid deep-fried foods and trans-fats. Trans-fats have been linked to clogged arteries, leading to heart disease.

4. Eat more healthy fish (such as salmon, halibut, orange roughy, and sardines), which contain an excellent source of Omega 3 and essential fatty acids as well as aid in the prevention of heart disease, cancer, immune diseases, and inflammatory diseases.

5. Eat more mono-saturated oils such as extra virgin olive oil when pan frying, wok cooking, and in salads.

6. Decrease your amount of sugars, which include sucrose, dextrose, and fructose. Eliminate sugar substitutes such as Sweet 'n' Low, Equal, and Splenda.

7. Decrease your consumption of red meats, which promote sluggish digestion, and eat more whole grains and raw vegetables.

8. Get a good night's sleep.

9. Avoid or reduce your intake of caffeinated drinks such as coffee, teas, and caffeinated soft drinks.

10. Supplement your food with daily multiple vitamins and minerals.

Follow these 10 steps, and you will release weight easily and become the picture of health.

Please note: We use the words weight "release" instead of weight "loss" because psychologically, the phrase "weight loss" is a negative term, which indicates sadness and something you need to find. "Release," however, means to set something free! You have made a positive decision to let your excess weight go away!

Visit the following Maryland health food stores in Howard County and Baltimore, Maryland: Mom's Organic Market, OK Natural Market, David's Natural Market, The Vitamin Shoppe, GNC, and Roots Market.

What other tried-and-true tips do you have for releasing weight? "Weigh in" in the comments below!

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