Now that the holidays are over, many households have tossed the sweet treats and are trying to get back into shape. The gym attendance is at an all-time high (at least until March) and people are seeking to accomplish their health goals for the new year. There are so many options out there, it can seem overwhelming when all we want to do is get healthier! Here are 4 tips to get you on track to a healthier version of you!
1. Ayurvedic Practices
This may be a new term to some, but this practice has been around for 3000 years! The concept focuses on body types and keeping your specific type in balance. The balancing act consists of eating the right foods at the proper times of day to either increase or decrease your metabolism rate.
It also provides guidance to have healthy nervous system responses to stress and absorb the best nutrients for your body at whatever stage of life you may be in at this present time. The Ayurvedic practices may have some solutions to health concerns you have had for awhile!
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly – there are various thoughts to partaking in coffee or tea. As with anything, moderation is key! Some believe that the coffee itself is not bad, but it’s all the extras people add to the drink that can cause harm. The sugary flavored creamers, or the packets of artificial sweeteners can create troubles of their own!
If you can enjoy one cup of coffee in the morning and perhaps a green tea in the early afternoon without it compromising a restful night’s sleep, then have at it! If you get the jitters or are feeling rather snappy to those around you, then perhaps your system is not a good fit for that caffeinated jolt.
We know that it stimulates the nervous system, but here are some facts you may not know. According to Web MD, caffeine has been used to help alleviate migraines, breathing problems in infants, mental decline in postmenopausal women and more.
3. Vegetarian & Vegan Options
When I listen to the ongoing debate between vegans and meat eaters, I am always amazed at the same question that pops up: What about protein? People worry that they aren’t going to get enough protein if they eat only fruits, nuts, grains and veggies. Perhaps we should consider this: one of the largest and strongest species in the jungle is a vegetarian!
Gorillas are known to be plant-based eaters. Should we eat like wild gorillas? When humans choose this menu option, they see reduced cases of inflammation, dementia, strokes, heart disease and diabetes. That information alone should give us reason to pause when glancing at steak options on a menu!
How do I get protein in my diet? Most of us have grown up believing that the only source of protein is from meat, poultry and fish, but that simply is not true! One stalk of broccoli provides 4.3 grams of protein, 1 cup of ½ inch pieces of green beans has 1.8 grams of protein, 1 cup of asparagus supplies us with 2.9 grams of protein – who knew? Medical News Today educates us on the ten best vegetables we can eat that provide us with protein.
4. How Bad are Carbs Really?
There are different types of carbs and not all carbohydrates are created equal! If we partake of white rice, pastries, white flour breads, pastas and cereals, we are eating foods with no nutritional value that contribute to heart disease, type 2 diabetes and obesity. While we may want to steer clear of refined carbs, we should also implement healthier options such as whole grain choices. Bran, oats, barley, legumes, vegetables and fruits would all fall under the whole grain options.
There is such a thing as high carb foods that offer some wonderful nutritional value as well. For example, eating ripe bananas can lower blood pressure, sweet potatoes contain antioxidants and while we may know that oranges are a good source of vitamin C, they also are key in helping to prevent kidney stones! Not only are blueberries known for being a source of antioxidants but have now come up as an aid to improving the memory in older adults.
On Track to a Healthier Version of You!
If we want to see good results, we simply need to make conscious choices that will contribute to a healthier version of ourselves. People who have struggled to break addictions whether it has been to food, smoking or drinking will usually agree that quitting the bad habit needs to be replaced with a good habit. So why not take time to empower ourselves with education and a willingness for change? Maybe it’s time to ditch the meatloaf Mondays menu and acquire some new thoughts and recipes that are colorful, festive and fun!