Monthly Health Blog
With the New Year and the new decade upon us-that means that for many of us- it’s time to think about making resolutions. Setting goals that will help us feel better physically and mentally is big this time of year- but these goals can be hard to keep. According to U.S. News & World Report, the failure rate for New Year’s resolutions is said to be about 80 percent, and most lose their resolve by mid-February. Luckily, these 5 healthy resolutions I am going to recommend are easy to achieve and maintain. As with all New Year’s resolutions, it’s important to write them down, share with family and friends, and decide how to hold yourself accountable.
1. Get Moving
Movement is Life! But- Exercise is a dirty word for so many of us. We live in a sedentary society where we go from the bed to the car to the desk to the car to the couch and back to the bed! So- simply plan for more movement on a daily basis. Moving more could be as simple as a daily 15-minute walk or a 10-minute yoga video each morning. It can be taking the stairs instead of the elevator or parking farther from the store. An hour of physical activity every day is a laudable goal, but small increments can also boost physical and emotional well-being.
2. Drink More Water
While the old saying about drinking eight glasses of water a day is outdated, staying hydrated is still critical for good health and is probably the number one factor we see contributing to patient’s health problems . Don’t wait until thirst hits. Sip fluids regularly throughout the day and with each meal. People who are sick, engage in physical activity, and women who are breastfeeding need more water than more sedentary people. And remember- lay off the soda, sweetened coffee, or juice habit and substitute plain water for good health. This simple New Year’s resolution will save about 240 calories for each 20-ounce soda — along with whatever money that might have gone toward the bad habit, which has been linked to diabetes, heart disease, and obesity.
3. Head Back to the Kitchen
Have you noticed that kitchens are getting fancier and fancier, yet fewer and fewer people are actually using them. The average American eats an average of 4.2 commercially prepared meals per week. In other words, as a nation, we eat out between four and five times a week. Now- “Chew on This”-… a Whopper Meal from Burger King with fries and a soda has 1,844 calories and 103 grams of fat, where as a home cooked dinner including grilled chicken breast with baked potato and steamed vegetables has only 546 calories with 5 grams of fat… So You Do the Math!! The beauty of resolving to do more of your own cooking is that you gain more control over the nutritional quality of your meals. Prepare your own food from fresh ingredients. You will save calories and money, and you will be healthier for it.
4. Practice Mindfulness
Now- what exactly is mindfulness you may be asking?? Mindfulness involves acceptance, meaning that we pay attention to our thoughts and feelings without judging them—without believing, for instance, that there’s a “right” or “wrong” way to think or feel in a given moment. Being mindful helps us to reduce stress and anxiety and allows us to live in the moment without worrying about the future. Some ways to start to practice mindfulness may include finding 10 quiet minutes a day to pray or meditate, learning to focus on your breathing, reading a self- help book, or taking a yoga class.
5. Unplug Daily (… this is my favorite!)
Thanks to modern electronics, we’re switched on and tuned in 24/7—and more stressed than ever. Not to mention a growing body of research finds that media overload can increase your risk for depression, social anxiety, job burnout, and even allergies. The solution? Find ways to unplug from electronics, even for a few minutes – even if the thought seems unbearable. Delay checking your phone first thing in the morning, or turn it off an hour before you go to bed. Instead of staring at the screen, try engaging more with the people and environment around you. Spending an hour, 10 hours, or a full day without your cell phone, Blackberry, computer, or games won’t kill you- and it might be the most important thing you do for your health this year!
We are always here to support you on these and your other Health Resolutions! And if you need recommendations on any of the suggestions above- simply stop in or call us at the office!
Best wishes for a Happy and a Healthy New Year from all of us at New City Chiropractic Center!!