You’re all too familiar with that one, dreaded moment when the festivities end. It hits you every year like a bad hangover. You promise yourself that once the last sip of eggnog has been guzzled and the cookie jar has been emptied, you’ll get healthy.
But what does healthy mean? We’re bombarded with visions of steel abdominal muscles and gazelle-like limbs. For most people, however, achieving health can’t be reduced to a lower health club membership deal or a dieting pill. Rather, the road to health is a lifelong journey encompassing mind, body and spirit.
That said, there are manageable steps you can take in your daily life to experience and sustain a healthier, balanced lifestyle. Popcorn, low in calories and high in fiber, whole grains and antioxidants, can help. One of the oldest and most beloved snacks for any age, popcorn is also a treat to lift the spirit.
• Everything in moderation: Rather than swing between extremes, try to get into an easy routine and listen to your body. Be active, but also know when to rest. Eat healthy foods, but allow yourself the occasional indulgence.
• Walk daily: Walking burns calories without putting strain on joints. A nice long walk also allows for some quiet time to process your emotions and events of the day.
• Floss your teeth: Flossing your teeth prevents plaque, which creates a toxin that your body has to work hard to fight, ultimately freeing up your immune system to fight other ailments.
• Eat a variety of fruits and veggies: Fruits and veggies provide essential vitamins, antioxidants and other nutrients to keep people healthy. Studies have also linked eating more produce with improved mood.
• Drink water: You should drink eight glasses of water per day to stay hydrated, keeping the gears of your body detoxified and in motion.
• Whole grains: Dietary fiber from whole grains or other foods may help reduce blood cholesterol levels and may lower risk of heart disease, obesity and type 2 diabetes. And whole grain foods such as popcorn, brown rice, whole-wheat pasta and cereals help provide a feeling of fullness with fewer calories.
“While it’s very important to eat well and exercise, being healthy doesn’t have to mean pushing ourselves to physical extremes,” says Amy Fischl, a registered dietitian at the University of Chicago Kovler Diabetes Center. “There are simple, moderate things we can do to engage our mind, body and spirit, and improve overall health.”
Courtesy of Brand Point.