2020 has been unlike any year we have experienced in our lifetime.
Because of physical isolation, emotional upheaval, and economic hardships, many people have given in to unhealthy behaviors as a coping mechanism.
Make this New Year the reason to turn things around.
Prepare 3 healthy meals every week.
We have let go of a lot of things this year.
To leave ourselves the emotional strength we needed to get through some of the extreme circumstances that we all lived, some people paid the price with unhealthy diets, gaining what is comically known as “The COVID – 19”, meaning the 20 or so extra pounds we put on, eating for comfort, or out of boredom.
It’s time to start refocusing on our physical well-being. Start slowly by making changes in your diet that are manageable, like resolving to prepare at least 3 full, healthy meals per week. Make sure to include plenty of fresh vegetables and nutrient-rich proteins.
We also recommend taking a day of the week to prepare healthy foods to have on-hand at all times.
Drink less alcohol.
As stay-at-home orders began as a mitigation strategy for COVID-19 transmission, Nielsen reported a 54% increase in national sales of alcohol for the week ending March 21, 2020, compared with 1 year before; online sales increased 262% from 2019.
That’s a lot of alcohol.
If you are still in that cycle of partaking an unusual amount, possibly even drinking during the day, it’s time to put down those pandemic habits and look to a healthier future.
Take advantage of the “sober curious” movement. You will very quickly see an improvement in mood, sleep, skin, and immune system.
It is said to be one of the most difficult addictions to overcome, but the pay-off is enormous.
Start this new year by making one of the best changes you can make. Cigarettes are extremely toxic, as are all tobacco products, including vapes, and pose a serious threat to your health.
If you’ve tried before but need a bit more help, experts at The American Cancer Society outline a few tools that you can turn to this year.
Become a plant owner
This year has been a record year for feeling out of touch with the outside world and many people have found that houseplants help fill the void.
Houseplant ownership doesn’t just beautify your space, tending to them can have an immensely calming effect as you get lost in the moments of providing them care. This is an example of mindfulness, a very helpful practice for coping with stress and anxiety.
Swing by the garden center. Just the presence of indoor plants can lower human stress levels, and one study found that actively caring for plants calmed the autonomic nervous system and lowered blood pressure.
Working at home? You might enjoy knowing that some evidence shows that people working near plants report greater concentration, satisfaction, and perceived air quality.
Listen to novels while you work out.
This is the double whammy. Grow your knowledge of literary favorites while you move your body and improve your health. Exercisers who saved an audiobook for the gym worked out 51% more often than those who didn’t, per a study in Management Science.
Need more ideas on how to take small steps to improve your health? Give Dr. Imhoff a call at (386) 310-4884.