Many people strive to live a healthier lifestyle. Finding the right place to start can be a challenge. Eating right, exercising regularly, and still making time for family, friends as well as own needs can seem overwhelming at times. Instead of attempting to conquer your health all at once, how about starting with setting more manageable goals? Making small changes today can lead to great health benefits down the road. Start by incorporating one of these changes:
Healthy Eating: Make a goal to be whole.
Stay away from processed and refined foods. Commit to eating more whole foods that contain all their natural nutrition. Lots veggies, fruit, whole grains, meat/fish, eggs, nuts/seeds and legumes.
Hydration: Don’t wait to hydrate.
A healthy body needs water! Not only does adequate water intake maintain your fluid balance, it also helps with weight loss, muscle endurance, healthier skin, kidney function, focus, energy, reducing aches and pains and elimination.
Physical Activity: Get Active.
If you have trouble getting yourself to exercise, re-frame exercise” as a “movement.” Most people don’t like to exercise, but they do enjoy moving. Find little ways to move throughout the day. Go for a walk on your lunch hour. Get off the bus/train one stop beyond where you live and walk home. Park far away from the office then walk. Use the stairs instead of the elevator.
Sleep and Stress: Stress less, sleep more.
Did you know that 75% – 90% of all doctor visits are stress related? While the stress response has its place, too much prolonged stress can and will negatively impact our health. High blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, adrenal fatigue and obesity are some conditions related to stress. One of the easiest ways to help reduce stress and cortisol levels throughout the day is by deep breathing. Try the 4-7-8 Breathing Technique. Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound. Close your mouth and inhale quietly through your nose to a mental count of four. Hold your breath for a count of seven. Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound to a count of eight. This is one breath. Many people are sleep deprived and rely on stimulants like caffeine and sugar to get them through the day. Lack of sleep can cause conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, weight gain and a low immune system. Stick to a sleep schedule, same bedtime and wakeup time even on the weekends. If you have trouble sleeping, avoid naps especially in the afternoon.