Being Healthy- What Does it Take?

Being healthy is not just what you eat or what you do for exercise.  Think about your health as a 365 approach.  Being healthy to me means
a. Getting enough sleep – we have all heard it, but it really is important to get 7-8 hours of sleep per night!  Lack of sleep increases levels of cortisol in the body and can lead to weight gain!  Plus lack of sleep, can lead to poor food choices, and I don’t know about you, but I get pretty cranky if I don’t get a good nights sleep!
b. Happiness – trust me, I know we can’t be happy all the time, and I definitely have my days, but happiness can lead to better health!  People who are happier, can lower their risk of cardiovascular disease, strengthen their immune system, decrease stress levels and even live longer.  What can you do today to be happier?  What can you be grateful for?
c. Water – Are you drinking enough water?  We need at least 64 oz of water per day and more if you are active (or in a warm climate).  If you don’t like the taste of water, try adding fruit to it to flavor it and make it more enticing!  Drinking enough water, keeps us hydrated, keeps your skin looking healthy and can prevent over eating!  When we are well hydrated we are more likely to make better food choices.  I love putting lemon in my water, it makes it refreshing!
d. Healthy food – This can be confusing because there is so much misinformation  out there, but are you making healthy choices?  Do you know what is healthy anymore?  It doesn’t have to be so complicated.  Make sure you are eating veggies with your lunch and dinner and part of your snacks too!  Include 2-3 fresh fruits per day, eating your fruit is better than drinking it!  Include whole grains (brown rice, whole wheat bread, oatmeal…), healthy fats (avocado, nuts, olive oil), and foods rich in Omega 3’s (salmon, flaxseeds and walnuts).


e. Exercise  – Some people exercise too much, and some not at all.  It doesn’t have to be an all or nothing approach.  I haven’t always had a healthy relationship with exercise.  In fact I would feel really guilty if I couldn’t get to the gym or do some kind of workout.  Feeling guilty made me irritable! Since I have two kids, I am never just sitting around, but not feeling the pressure to beat myself up at the gym has been so freeing.  I can take a day or two off from working out, without the guilt.  As long as I do some kind of movement, like going for a walk, or playing outside with my kids, I feel good!  Can’t get to the gym, track your steps and aim for about 10,000 per day!