Have you noticed how extra calories have slipped into your days? If you’re like most people, you probably haven’t thought much about it.

Have you noticed how extra calories have slipped into your days? If you’re like most people, you probably haven’t thought much about it. Unfortunately, a few extra calories here and there can add up — making it harder and harder to lose or maintain weight.

To help people make healthier choices, the SWAP it to DROP it campaign offers local grocery store tours. The tours last approximately one hour and a registered dietician walks through the entire store teaching people how to chose healthier options.

Upcoming grocery store tours at Schutz Family Foods are Thursday, Jan. 9 at 2 p.m. and Friday, Jan. 24 at 12 p.m.

To attend a tour just come to the store at the alloted time and a registered dietician will be waiting in the front of the store.

Recipes and tips will be provided.

Take the bagel. Twenty years ago, the average bagel had just 140 calories; today the average bagel contains 350 calories. That’s the difference of more than 200 calories in one bagel! Most people are not adjusting for those added calories by eating just half. The bagel is not the only culprit. The average portion of spaghetti has increased by 500 calories, soda by 150 calories and a muffin by 300 calories. And, the list goes on and on.

Don’t let this discourage you. Conquer those sneaky extra calories with SWAP-ing! Saving just 100 calories a day by making small SWAPs in what you eat can add up to a 10-pound weight loss in a year. It’s that easy. And you don’t have to overhaul everything you eat and drink at one time. Every healthier choice you make in place of another choice, can make a difference.

Plus, small SWAPs are doable and won’t leave you feeling deprived. For example, at home: SWAP eating on a nine-inch plate (or small dessert or salad plate) in place of eating on a typical 12-inch dinner plate. You’ll naturally fill your plate with less food and eat less. It’s proven!

At the grocery store: Buy individual portion-sized bags of your favorite snacks. You’ll eat less from a smaller bag.

At the convenience store: SWAP a half of sandwich in place of the whole thing. You’ll eat fewer calories and get two meals for the price of one!

At restaurants: Share your dessert with others instead of eating it all yourself. It feels good to share and save calories at the same time!

Other ways to SWAP IT to DROP IT and make 2014 your healthiest year yet:

Check out local grocery stores and convenience stores for SWAP-ing tips and healthful recipes. Sleepy Eye convenience stores participating in the campaign are Casey’s General Store, Cenex and Freedom, and Schutz Family Foods is a participating grocery store.Attend a local grocery store tour. Registered dietitians will be conducting regular tours to help you learn how to shop with heart health in mind, answer questions, and show you how to make simple food and beverage SWAPs to save calories.Take the SWAP IT to DROP IT Six-Week Challenge! This challenge will inspire you to make healthier food and drink SWAPs and also SWAPs to help you be more physically active. Simply go to www.heartsbeatback.org and click on “SWAP IT to DROP IT” under the “Brown County” tab to get started. Each week download the specific SWAP IT to DROP IT information to focus on that week.