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Dalia Huerta, LVN, Family Medicine, Fort Bend Medical and Diagnostic Center

While looking at photos of herself, Dalia realized she didn’t like what she saw. She decided to take steps toward a healthier life. A new gardener, she began eating the produce that she grew and canning what was left over to eat later. In addition, daily walks and portion control led to a 50-pound weight loss … and counting!

What prompted your desire to become healthier?
I saw some family pictures we had taken shortly after the New Year and I did not like what I saw!
How did you decide to change what you saw in those pictures?
A few months prior to that, I had started gardening – growing my own vegetables at home. I was doing this as a hobby and thought it would help me be healthier. But I wasn’t really eating them, so I started eating a lot more of what I was growing. Then I got into canning them to eat later. I also started portion control – cutting down on what I was eating overall.
How did you adjust your daily meal planning?
I didn’t cut out any specific food groups; I just eat less. I bring my lunch to work nearly every day. If I do go out to eat at a restaurant, I’ll only eat half of the meal. I also try to incorporate more vegetables – so instead of eating french fries, I’ll ask for grilled or steamed vegetables.
What is your guilty pleasure?
Dark chocolate – every once in a while I’ll have a piece of dark chocolate. I only need a small piece to have the flavor, and then I can say ‘that’s enough’ and keep going!
Did you incorporate any exercise?
Yes, I started walking. I walk in the mornings before work and also during my lunch break around the parking lot. I try to take about 16,000 steps per day. I also stair climb at times.
What are your wellness goals?
I’m trying to get to a body mass index (BMI) of 25 – which is healthy for me. I’ve lost 53 pounds so far, and still have about 16 pounds to go.
What have been some of your biggest hurdles?
Planning. You have to do a lot of planning. I have two kids, and they have really busy, demanding schedules. I have to prepare for the week on weekends so I don’t get caught off guard and end up in a fast food drive through.
What would you tell someone who is now at the beginning of a wellness journey?
Don’t give up! Even if you don’t notice a change on the outside, you are getting healthier. Keep going, and eventually that change will become visible.