“New Year, New You” as the saying goes.
The New Year brings with it renewed opportunities for healthier living. Simple changes in diet, activity, work habits and even stress reduction can greatly improve lifestyle health and wellness. The good news is small changes can yield great results in minimal time.
After the holiday season, most people (usually) find themselves carrying a few extra pounds. The holidays usually bring out calorie rich foods, easily leading to both water and weight gain.
Pre-planning meals after the holidays, paying close attention to both calorie and sodium content, can put you back in control of your dietary health. Increasing calorie reduced fluids and water intake can also help rid your body of excess sodium ( fluid retention).
Sleep deprivation is also on the rise. For improved sleep time, it is highly recommended to go to sleep at the same time every night (set a sleep schedule and stick to it). Also, try “unplugging” for an hour or two prior to going to sleep. Turn off the TV, dim the lights, and shut down the computer and phone. Less late night distractions usually improve sleep patterns.
Finally, with regards to fitness, the national recommendations are for 30 minutes of activity at least 5 days a week (also translated to 150 minutes of activity per week). The best way to ease into a new year is to find an activity you enjoy, and slowly increase your activity level. Simple walking is a great way to build muscle, improve overall health and decrease stress levels.
The New Year is often a mix of both excitement and stress. Opportunity exists in every area of your life. Make small, meaningful changes as the days goes by, and you will soon find yourself in a happier, healthier place.
Happy New Year!