Resources to help you stay healthy at home and at work

 

This section includes tips, ideas and tools for getting and staying active and healthy at home and at work.

 


Butt Out!  Need help quitting the habit - or overcoming temptation to take it up again?

Check out the Canadian Cancer Society's Smokers' Helpline website for online help, tools, resources and support.

 


Making Healthy Food Choices - Navigating the Marketplace

Here are several useful links to help you make healthy food choices while shopping and preparing meals:

Sodium

EatRight Ontario’s “Get the Scoop on Salt”: https://www.eatrightontario.ca/en/Articles/Heart-Health/Get-the-Scoop-on-Salt.aspx

Sugar

Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada’s “Sugar and Your Health”: http://www.heartandstroke.com/site/apps/nlnet/content2.aspx?c=ikIQLcMWJtE&b=4016859&ct=14183373

Label Reading

Healthy Canadians interactive tool on label reading: http://www.healthycanadians.gc.ca/eating-nutrition/label-etiquetage/index-eng.php

Low-sodium recipes

Beet Hummus: http://www.heartandstroke.com/site/c.ikIQLcMWJtE/b.4543323/k.61DC/Recipes__Beet_hummus.htm

Classic Split Pea Soup: http://www.heartandstroke.com/site/c.ikIQLcMWJtE/b.8477637/k.3A9E/Recipes__Classic_split_pea_soup.htm

Nut and Herb Stuffed Chicken: http://www.heartandstroke.com/site/c.ikIQLcMWJtE/b.9255341/k.9F35/Recipes__Nut_and_herb_stuffed_chicken.htm

Low-added-sugar recipes

Cold Coffee Drink: http://www.heartandstroke.com/site/c.ikIQLcMWJtE/b.7553937/k.6F19/Recipes__Cold_coffee_drink.htm

Almond Oat Bars: http://www.heartandstroke.com/site/c.ikIQLcMWJtE/b.9306489/k.58B3/Recipes__Almond_oat_bars.htm

Savory Granola: http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/savory-granola-0

Useful apps: 

eaTracker:  http://www.eatracker.ca/

One Sweet App: http://sugarcoateddoc.com/the-app/

Cookspiration: http://www.cookspiration.com/


Get up and Move!

10 great reasons why you should be walking!

The health benefits of walking are many and it is so easy!  Just strap on a pair of comfortable shoes and head out the door!  Here are 10 surprising ways to use walking to boost your health, Read more.

And even more reasons why_walking_is_good_for_you!

For tips to make starting and sticking to your walking routine more fun, read more.

And, check out Walking for Fitness - courtesy of  Christian Kroh, Community Outreach, Sturgeon Valley Physiotherapy, AlbertaCommunity Outreach

 

Exercise for healthy bones

Exercise at any stage in life may help prevent fractures by maintaining bone mineral density and by improving balance that reduces the risk of falls. For more information on how to exercise for healhy bones, check out the Osteoporosis Canada website.

 

No hibernation necessary - Stay active all winter!

For ideas and inspiration on how to stay active during the winter, read: Insight Stay Active    Declic Rester Actif

Fun summer ideas for the whole family

Summertime is the perfect opportunity to venture outdoors. Canadian Living has put together an all-in-one guide with a wide range of summer activities you can do with your family. It also includes travel tips, tips on staying safe and even cool recipe ideas. Read more

101 ways to get fit!

Whether you're looking to kick start a new weight-loss plan or simply need inspiration to refresh your fitness routine, Canadian Living has compiled 110 of the best fitness, nutrition and weight-loss tips to help get you motivated and on track.  You are bound to find something just right for you!  Read more.

Couch to 5K - How to start a running program

Want to take up running but not sure how to go about it? Check out this website for all the information you need, plus a workout schedule, to get you from couch to 5k in 9 weeks. Read more

Go for a walk!

Walking is one of the easiest and most profitable forms of exercise.  You get all the health benefits of regular exercise without the pain and the strain. All you need is a good pair of shoes and comfortable clothing.  It's easy to do - just put one foot in front of the other and head out the door! 

Find out why walking is the best medicine, read more.

Starting a walking program - 12 week beginners schedule

You know you want to begin a fitness walking program, but don't know where to start. Walking is one of the easiest and most profitable forms of exercise. All you need is a good pair of shoes, comfortable clothing, and desire! Read more

Starting a walking group

Interested in starting a lunchtime walking group at work? Get all the details here: starting_a_walking_group.docx

Sitting is hazardous to your health

Sitting for long periods is bad for you. Even if you are a regular exerciser, if you spend most of your day sitting – in your car, your office chair, on your sofa at home – you are putting yourself at increased risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease and a variety of cancers.

Adding simple activities such as standing to answer the phone, taking the stairs, and walking to a colleague's office instead of sending an email can help increase daily physical activity.

For ideas, inspiration and information check out the following:

Get-Moving/Fitting-Activity-into-Your-Day


 

Stretch to Relax and Rejuvenate

 

Take a health break from your busy day

When your day is busy and scheduling a workout seems next to impossible, try these stretching exercies, presented by Lena Stuart, pilates instructor with the Montreal Athletic Association and McGill's Deptartment of Athletics and Recreation.  All it takes is 10-20 minutes to refresh and rejuventate yourself! Stretch!

Stretch for a healthy back  

Prevent low back pain and injury by doing these stabilizing exercises presented by the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health & Safety. Read more


Healthy Blood Pressure

 

Healthy blood pressure = healthy heart

High blood pressure affects one in five Canadians and is the number one risk factor for stroke and a major risk factor for heart disease. Learn more about high blood pressure here.

Blood Pressure Action Plan

The Heart & Stroke Foundation's Blood Pressure Action Plan is an interactive online tool designed to help you manage your blood pressure.  It includes an online risk assessment. Read more
(Note: Always consult your physician regarding any medical condition.)

Diet and Exercise

You can help control your blood pressure by following the DASH diet (Dietary Approaches to Stopping Hypertension), by being physically active and by replacing salt in your diet with herbs and spices.  Visit the Heart & Stroke Foundation's website for valuable information.

Managing Stress

Be good to youself

How you manage stress impacts your heart health, not to mention other factors in your life.  Take this short quiz from the Heart & Stroke Foundation to learn about coping strategies.  Check out Managing Your Mental Health on this website.


Your Bones Matter

 

Osteoporosis is characterized by low bone mass and deterioration of bone tissue. This leads to increased bone fragility and risk of fracture (broken bones).

Osteoporosis does not develop overnight. You can lose bone mass steadily for many years without experiencing any symptoms until a bone fractures. It is therefore often referred to as the 'silent thief'.

Some facts:

It affects both genders and can strike at any age.                                                                                  
Fractures from osteoporosis are most likely to occur in the wrist, spine, shoulder and hip.
Women and men alike begin to lose bone in their mid-30s; as they approach menopause, women lose bone at a greater rate, from 2-3 per cent per year.
At least 1 in 3 women and 1 in 5 men will suffer from an osteoporotic fracture during their lifetime.
Osteoporosis causes 70-90% of 30,000 hip fractures annually.
Twenty-eight per cent of women and 37% of men who suffer a hip fracture will die within the following year.

                                                                

Maintaining healthy bones    

Nutrition, healthy eating habits and physicial activity play a very important role in maintaining strong bones.

Keep your bones healthy by:

    * Getting the recommended daily intake of calcium and vitamin D.
    * Exercising regularly: include weight bearing activity such as walking.
    * Avoiding smoking, and excessive amounts of alcohol and caffeine.

Visit Osteoporosis Canada and HealthandBone.Ca   for the latest information on how to maintain strong and healthy bones.


Surviving the Desk Job

 

When you sit at your desk all day long at work, it's hard to stay healthy.

Movements that you repeat over and over (such as answering the phone or reaching for a book) can lead to strains and stress. Reduce unnecessary movements as much as possible by keeping items you use often within arm's reach and using tools, such as a phone headset, to reduce repetitive movements. You should also alternate the hand you use to operate your computer's mouse.

Check out 'Be Healthy at Work - It's Your Job'

Proper workstation set-up guidelines can be found at 
http://www.mcgill.ca/ehs/programs-and-services/ergonomics

Sitting at a desk all day also puts you at risk of back pain (particularly if you sit with poor posture), leg cramps, and tense muscles. It is recommended that a person break for 5-10 minutes for every hour spent at a workstation.

For example:

  • Vary the work tasks. Break up keyboarding tasks work by doing other job duties or tasks that involve moving around or changing body position.
  • Try to stand up and move around.
  • Look away from the screen occasionally and focus your eyes on an object far away.
  • Take regular rest breaks to ease muscle aches, eye strain and stress.
  • Relax your muscles, stretch and change position

Try these office stretches Stretches in the Office


Eating Well

 

Healthy snacking

Healthy snacks at regular intervals throughout the day are good for controlling blood sugar levels and give your body an energy boost. 

For tips on healthy snacking, consult the SMART SNACKING brochure produced by McGill Food & Dining Services smart_snacking.pdf 

This informative brochure also includes their executive chef's very own delicious recipe for Health Cookies!

Healthy waists

Are you an apple or a pear?  Where you carry your weight is just as important as how much weight you carry. Visit the Heart and Stroke Foundation's Healthy Waist website for information on how to take a proper waist measurement, and the importance of keeping your waistline a healthy size.

Healthy weight

Try one or all of these 5 healthy eating habits from the Heart & Stroke foundation to help you maintain a healthy weight all year long.

Nutritional advice

Test your nutrition knowledge by taking Health Canada's online interactive nutrition quiz.  Learn about proper serving sizes, good choices and how to read nutrition labels. 

Visit the Dieticians of Canada website for tips on how to eat well: planning healthy meals, making smart choices at the grocery stores, and recipes.

Track your day's food choices and compares them to the guidelines laid out by Health Canada by using with their eatracker tool.

"Food: A serving of science": webcasts of presentations by experts on food science from the Lorne Trottier Symposium series.


Healthy Resources

 

Staying informed about good health practices is an important way to improve your overall health and sense of wellbeing.

Health and Wellness

  • Montreal Gazette:  The Health section of the Montreal Gazette has articles on health, fitness and nutrition - for all age groups.
  • Passport Santé: This website offers information on a wide variety of topics related to health & wellness.
  • e-Connects (MedicAlert): This monthly online newsletter, produced by the Canadian Medic Alert Foundation, includes health & wellness information in their "Health & Wellness Corner", and healthy recipes under "Featured Recipes".  It is not just for people with allergies - but for anyone who wants to maintain a healthy lifestyle!
  • The Globe & Mail (online newspaper): The Globe Life section has information about the latest health and fitness news and trends, plus nutrition advice. 
  • Jane E. Brody is the Personal Health columnist for The New York Times. She has degrees in biochemistry and science writing. Read her articles on health and nutrition here.
  • ParticipACTION: The ParticipACTION website provides lifestyle and activity tips, the facts about the consequences of inactivity, and inspirational stories from everyday people who have decided to lead active lifestyles.
  • Canada's Physical Activity Guide: Download Canada's Physical Activity Guide and learn how to make wise choices about physical activity that will improve your health, help prevent disease, and allow you to get the most out of life.                                                           
    Vélo Québec offers various resources for cycling enthusiasts, as well as listings of upcoming cycling events around Montreal and throughout Quebec.
  • Kino Québec provides tips and resources that promote a physically active lifestyle.

Emotional Wellbeing

  • The Canadian Mental Health Association provides tips related to a wide variety of topics including stress, children’s mental health and aging.
  • Check Up From The Neck Up:   This simple, online, private, mental health check-up can identify some symptoms of common mood disorders so you can get help if you need it. You can also learn more about mood disorders on this site and find resources to help yourself, your family members, or friends.
  • Manulife Financial's  website provides lots of informaton about mental health in the workplace.
  • Managing Your Mental Health section of this website.

Personal Health

  • Canadian Diabetes Association: Find out about the symptoms and signs of diabetes, take a questionnaire to find out if you are at risk, and learn some important steps that you can take to prevent diabetes on the Canadian Diabetes Association's website.
  • Quebec Breast Cancer Foundation: Breast Health 101.  Take the quiz and learn valuable information! 
  • Heart & Stroke Foundation: Go here to learn from the Heart and Stroke Foundation about what you can do to reduce the heart attack and stroke risk factors in your life, such as high blood pressure, unhealthy food choices, smoking, and stress.
  • The Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada offers a variety of informational publications about MS's symptoms and treatments as well as the ongoing research on the disease.
  • The Kidney Foundation of Canada's site offers information about living with kidney disease, including details about research happenings , the various treatment options available, and educational events related to kidney disease and organ donation.
  • The Canadian Women's Health Network's FAQ includes links to resources, organizations, and research projects on a variety of women’s health topics.
  • Arthritis Society: Learn about the underlying causes of arthritis and gain insight on how to help make living with arthritis a bit more manageable on the Arthritis Society's website.
  • Alzheimer Society: On there website, you can find out all about the disease, including risk factors and preventative measures.
  • Cancer prevention starts with healthy living. Lifestyle changes can make a difference. 
  • The Breast Cancer Foundation recently launched it's campaign, Don't Forget to Check.  While this campaign is aimed at younger women 18 to 25 years old who wonder what they should do to prevent the onset of breast cancer, the information provided on the campaign's websiteis relevant to women of all ages.dontforgettocheck.ca
  • Canadian Centre for Occupational Health & Safety: One of the many useful resources to be found on the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety's site is this list of exercises for a healthy back.

What to Do In and Around Town.

Looking for something fun to do on the weekend?

After a busy week, the weekend is the perfect time for relaxing and de-stressing, and spending time with family and friends.

Discover Mount Royal - in the heart of Montreal!

Conservation activities, lectures and guided walks, bird watching - there are activities for everyone!  Read more

I Spy Montreal - a parent's guide

Check out this website dedicated to helping parents decide where to go and what to do with the kids in and around Montreal.

Morgan Arboretum

The Morgan Arboretum has several upcoming outdoor events for the entire family!

Montreal on the Cheap!

Free and cheap family-friendly things to do in and around Montreal. Check out their website.

 

More on What to do Around Town

  • Bike Paths: For a comprehensive and interactive map of all the bike paths and streets with bike lanes in the Montreal area, check out Pedal Montréal.
  • Running Clubs: Montreal is home to a number of running clubs, bringing together people of all ages from all over the island to engage in informal group runs and formal running events. Whether you run for health, recreation, or competition, you're sure to find a welcoming community in clubs such as the largely francophone Club Vainqueurs or the more anglophone (but still bilingual) Boreal Club. The Running Room also organizes running clubs for beginners and the more advanced.
  • Circuit du Course du Pied: Looking for a way to test yourself as a runner? Twelve of Montreal's largest running events of the year, organized by the Circuit de course à pied du Grand Montréal are described in this calendar.
  • Weekend to End Breast Cancer: The Montreal Jewish General Hospital's annual charity walk to end women's cancers takes place the last weekend in August. The walk's route runs through the streets and winds across Montreal. More details can be found here.
  • Club Montreal Sport & Social: If organized sports are your preference, Club Montreal Sport & Social organizes sporting events in a wide variety of different team sports for adults. Organizing a full team is not necessary either; sign up as an individual player in any league and you will be placed into a team automatically.