Healthy Abbotsford Blog

It Only Takes 15 Minutes

Taking time every day to read or do a learning activity with children is crucial to a child’s development. Even just 15 minutes a day can improve a child’s literacy skills dramatically, and can help a parent improve their skills as well.

This Saturday (January 26) is Family Literacy Day. To find out what is happening in Abbotsford click here.

ABC Life Literacy Canada has some fantastic, simple tips that will encourage healthy development for your children:

In honour of Family Literacy Day’s 15th year, ABC Life Literacy Canada is encouraging Canadian families to have “15 Minutes of Fun” learning together. Learning can happen at any time. Practicing literacy together for just 15 minutes a day has tremendous benefits for both children and parents. Here are some great ways to get started:

  1. Create your own comic strip about your family.
  2. Invent two new endings to your favourite book.
  3. Make up a new recipe together and post it online.small girl coloring
  4. Tell knock-knock jokes together while doing the dishes.
  5. Sing five songs really, really loud!
  6. Invent a new game while playing at the park.
  7. Read a story to your pet (or favourite toy).
  8. Make a paper fortune teller with eight fortunes.
  9. Write a silly poem and tell it to your family at dinner.
  10. Log on to your favourite word game – can you beat your best score?
  11. Create your family tree.
  12. Play rhyming “I Spy” – “I spy something that rhymes with…”
  13. Play a board game together.
  14. Text your friend and tell them about your holiday.
  15. Find 15 things that begin with the letter “S”.

For more information, or more ideas, visit ABC Life Literacy Canada.


Is This Your Year to Quit Smoking?

If it is, read on…This information from will be a critical tool in helping you kick the habit for good.

Congratulations. You’ve made the choice to quit smoking and are about to embark on the road to freedom, but getting there will take careful planning to ensure you successfully reach your destination. Research shows the more prepared you are, the more likely you are to succeed. And the most effective way to quit, is to have a PLAN.

Take a look at all the different tools that you have access to for FREE! Click on the image to access the tools.

List of Quit Now tools


When Am I Too Sick to Workout?

This post comes from

Drop that Tissue and Give Me 20  — The Answer/Debate

If symptoms are above the neck (think runny nose or sore throat), it’s typically okay to continue working out, as exercising may even temporarily clear those sinuses and provide relief[7]. However, if there’s an issue below the neck (think cough, body aches, or chest congestion), it’s best to wait it out. There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to working out sick, so evaluate the intensity of symptoms and err on the side of caution to prevent from feeling even worse.

Working out regardless of the cold? Lower the intensity of a normal workout. Try stretching and/or yoga, taking a long walk with the pup, or some light strength training. Sick days are bound to come around, so if the idea of attempting any form of exercise seems like the equivalent of climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro, take a break, put those hardworking feet up, and catch up on that favorite TV show.

Click here to read the whole article.


The Real People of Abbotsford

This time of year we get bombarded with images and videos of super fit, beautiful people that seem to have everything figured out. Their life is great and if you buy whatever product they are selling your life will be great too. Right.

So, how about being inspired by some real life people, who live right here in Abbotsford, who have actually made changes to live a healthier life?

ParticipACTION has a wall of inspiration where anyone can share their story. Click here to learn about the real people of Abbotsford who are changing their lives for the better.

picture of a map


The Most Fun Sandwich Ever!

This healthy lunch idea comes from

Another day, another sandwich. You look in the fridge and decide what to slap together. Bread, spread, fillings. Lunch by rote. But have you ever tried putting a sandwich on a stick? For starters, all of the ingredients stay much more fresh that way because they’re not sitting right on the sandwich spread and, come on, isn’t everything just better when it comes on a stick?

picture of a lunch box meal

Click here to read the rest of the article.


Quit Smoking by Texting

The week of January 21-27 is National non-smoking week. You are healthier when you live tobacco free and you can’t quit successfully until you are ready. So, if you have been thinking about quitting, if you are ready, know that there are a lot of free tools available to you. Visit to access a wide range of resources that will help you kick the habit for good.

A new tool is QuitNow by TXT.  Get support anywhere, anytime with text messages customized to your quit date. Text key words for additional help when you need it the most. QuitNow By TXT is a 14 week mobile texting service that delivers motivational tips to smokers who plan to quit within the next 30 days, and those who have already quit.

Click here to get started!

QuitNow logo


Top 4 Reasons Why Diets Fail

This post is from Dr. Jessica Bartfield who specializes in nutrition and weight management at the Loyola Center for Metabolic Surgery & Bariatric Care.

Despite that fact that two-thirds of Americans say they are on a diet to improve their health, very few are actually decreasing in size. “Dieting is a skill, much like riding a bicycle, and requires practice and good instruction, ” says Dr. Bartfield. “You’re going to fall over and feel frustrated, but eventually you will succeed and it will get easier.”

Top Four Reasons Why Dieters Don’t Lose Weight

According to Dr. Bartfield, here are the top four reasons why many dieters fail to lose weight:

1. Underestimating Calories Consumed
2. Overestimating Activity and Calories Burned
3. Poor Timing of Meals
4. Inadequate Sleep

To read more about why these are the 4 reasons why diets fail, click here.


Argh, Not Another School Lunch

Does this sound like you? Well, you are definitely not alone. Most parents find the task of making school lunches boring, tedious and unrewarding. And even after going through the effort of making the lunch lots of kids don’t end up eating it anyway.

In this video Catherine McCord goes through the 3 key things you need for your kids to love their lunch:

  1. Balance
  2. Fun Factor
  3. The Visual


New Year’s Resolution Again?

Sherri McMillan is an internationally renowned Fitness Expert. She recently wrote a blog looking at why approximately 80% of people don’t achieve their New Year’s resolutions. Given this extremely high number she suggests that the problem is not with the people who are trying to achieve the goal, but with the process of setting resolutions.

In her article she walks you through 4 simple steps that can help you not only set your resolutions but also achieve them.

Step 1: Determine what it’s going to take to keep you motivated.
Step 2: Set SMART goals!
Step 3: Take itsy, bitsy baby steps.
Step 4: Determine obstacles and strategies.

Click here to read more.

Picture of a calendar


FREE Healthy Eating App!

The eaTipster mobile app was created by Dietitians of Canada to make it a little easier for you to eat healthy. Dietitians serve up a trusted new tip for you each and every day.

Read Them: Each tip is fortified with more details backed by research.
Savour Them: Add tips to your favourites to digest later.
Serve Them: Dish up tips to your friends, sharing on Facebook, twitter, e-mail and text.
Get Them: Set daily reminders to receive new daily tips to suit your routine.

Click here to get the app!

picture of an iphone and ipad