Healthy living. When you talk about living a healthy lifestyle, working to lose weight, or trying to eat better, it sounds so easy. But the reality of sticking to those changes… well, let’s just say it is much harder to actually do than to talk about. So why is it so hard to make these types of changes last? Here are five simple changes that you can make to help you live healthier.
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Why do most people give up on their New Year’s Resolution?
Well, sometimes, we make goals that are unrealistic. For example, if you want to get healthier by quitting smoking, you may be setting yourself up for failure to try and stop cold-turkey. There has to be a plan and a process to carrying through with your resolutions. In this day-and-age of instant-access-to-everything, it is hard to realize that some things take time. Your results will come, but not overnight.
How can you set a plan in place to get healthier that you will actually be able to keep?
Make small, simple changes.
That truly is the answer. There is no magic wand to wave and make things happen. You must set goals for yourself that you want to obtain and are able to obtain. Anything else will most likely end in discouragement or failure.
So how do you implement these changes into your lifestyle? Here are 5 simple things that anyone can do, starting today, to be healthier:
Take a Whole Food Supplement
While I have taken different herbs and vitamins over the years, I added a whole food supplement into the mix. I had tried them before, but this time, I consistently have taken them… and noticed a difference. The first thing that I noticed was more energy—I wasn’t as tired in the mornings. I also noticed that I wasn’t snacking as much. I felt satisfied after eating a meal. Before starting these, I felt that my body was always craving something, but I didn’t know what… so I’d grab some crackers or chips to fill the void—and that was just extra calories and fat—and it never curbed that feeling. Lastly, this was not something that I noticed, but my hairstylist pointed it out when I went in for a haircut (and highlights)—she mentioned how fast my hair was growing and said it was so much faster than most other people— I don’t know… maybe it was this supplement… giving my body extra vitamins and nutrients that I didn’t have before…
Wear an activity tracker
Every. Single. Day. Simple, right? Throughout the day, you may find it motivating to see your progress when you wear an activity tracker. You know that you are active enough, or if your steps are low, you will know to pick it up a bit and go for a walk outside, get on the treadmill, or if you are at a desk job, stand up at your desk and make calls, etc. Staying active can also give you a little extra energy throughout the day…
This is very important: do not skip breakfast. You are probably very busy in the mornings, but don’t allow your body to suffer because you “don’t have the time.” Drinking a breakfast shake gives your body the feeling of being satisfied because it takes away the “hunger factor.” Your body has gone for several hours without food while you slept, start your day off with breakfast to give you extra energy. You know the old saying “food for thought?” Well, you literally need to give your brain some food so you can think clearer. Even if you are not a fan of breakfast or truly don’t have time to cook a big breakfast, partaking in a small, healthful breakfast can work wonders for your body. Try a protein shake, such as the Complete Shakes from Juice Plus+. They are whole food based—no artificial fillers, colors, or flavors—and they actually taste good. Whether you just mix it with milk and go or blend it to make a smoothie, your body will feel better by putting some good nutrition in it.
Cut down on the amount of processed foods that you eat
Many times, we turn to processed foods because they are basically dinner-in-a- box—they are convenient. While they may save you a bit of time, the nutritional value is definitely lacking… and you usually pay a bit of a premium for the convenience. Whole foods are foods that are as close to their natural state as possible. For example, when you eat an apple, you are getting all the vitamins, minerals and nutrients that are naturally occurring in that particular food. When foods are processed, they have been refined in some way. The natural form has changed, and through this processing or refinement, the naturally occurring vitamins and minerals may have been stripped away, so you are only getting the nutrients from what is left. You don’t have to cut out processed foods entirely, just cut down on the amount that you consume. So a simple change that you can make here is replacing potato chips with carrot sticks and apple slices; instead of warming up chicken nuggets and French fries for dinner, grill chicken breast with zucchini and peppers…
Drink more water
This may be the simplest thing that you can do to improve your health and it doesn’t take time or money. Simply. Drink. Water. There are several health benefits of drinking water, including:
- Water Helps Maintain the Balance of Body Fluids
- Water Can Help Control Calories
- Water Helps Energize Muscles
- Water Helps Keep Skin Looking Good
- Water Helps Your Kidneys
- Water Helps Maintain Normal Bowel Function
Say “no” to soda
Just think of all the extra sugar and calories that you are consuming when you drink a can of pop. Not only are there health problems associated with drinking soda, such as a link to obesity, kidney damage, certain cancers, and even elevated blood pressure, but studies have also shown that you can actually lose weight when you do nothing else besides stop drinking soda. Next time you want something a bit more than water, try a green tea or lemonade.
Life is about moderation
This is not about completely cutting anything out of your life. It is about moderation. Whatever changes you make today to be healthy that you weren’t making yesterday, are steps in the right direction. Build on those changes. Totally depriving yourself is not good, but overindulging isn’t an option either. As with anything—keep a healthy balance in mind.