7 SIMPLE TRUTHS FOR A HEALTHIER YOU
Ask most Americans if they want to be healthier, and they’ll say yes. Healthy is in,
and it’s a good thing because we all need it. According to Marketdata Enterprises, Americans spend over $60 billion annually to try to lose weight. This includes everything from gym memberships, weight loss programs, books, diet foods and
Are we healthier as a result? Unfortunately, we’re less healthy than ever. More than 1 out of 3 adults are obese (having 1/3 of their body weight fat), and more than half of American’s are overweight or obese. With an increase in body fat is an increased risk of disease, such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer. So as we become heavier, we become less healthy.
Thank goodness we want to be healthier, but even so it’s hard for us to know where to begin when there is so much false information, and so many choices and conflicting messages. Let’s step away from the noisy promises of weight-loss industry opportunists for a minute and come back to reality. I’ve compiled my top 7 secrets to a healthier you in an effort to focus on simple truths that work to make you healthier. These truths have worked for me personally as well as my clients.
1. Have a Healthy Compass. See daily choices as opportunities to support your physical, emotional, and spiritual wellbeing. Everything you do should point you in the direction of healthy. Drink water, be active, eat wholesome foods, get rest, manage stress – all of these are daily occasions to be healthier. Imagine if each and every day you made most of your decisions based on this directive. Being healthy would naturally happen, without purchasing promise-heavy products.
2. Listen to Your Body, Not the Latest Sales Pitch. If you are aware of how you feel after you make an unhealthy choice, you will find it easier to decide to not make that same choice again. Do you really feel good after eating junk food, or overindulging? Or not being active? Maybe at first, but later follows guilt, shame and maybe even a bellyache. Learn from how your body feels. Follow its lead.
3. Practice Moderation, Not Perfection. Find a way to incorporate your favorite foods into your life and enjoy them. It would be a sad day if someone told me I couldn’t have coffee with cream and honey ever again if I wanted to be healthy. I love a cup of coffee every morning, and have for years. Yet, surprisingly, I’m in a healthy weight category, and look and feel great! Yet many times we are told that we have to eat in a certain way or give up the things we enjoy. The secret is to be moderate – don’t overdo it. The same is true for physical activity. You don’t have to run races to be healthy, or perform amazing physical feats. You just need to move, and be consistent.
4. Don’t Buy Into Fast-fix Fads. Popping pills, drinking shakes, then eating barely enough calories to sustain a bird is the normal weight loss protocol these days. Why? Weight loss product sellers want to capture you as an ongoing stream of income. Trust me when I say that everything you pay for with these programs can be found in a healthy eating plan. Add additional healthy habits to eating healthy, such as daily physical activity, drinking enough water, managing stress, and sleeping well, and you’re looking at a lifetime of health without paying extra.
5. Let Go of the Perfect Body Image. Most of us just want to feel good, be able to participate in the activities that we love and enjoy life to its fullest. Unless you want to look like a body builder or model aim for health, not the perfect physique. Let go of mental images of the perfect body, and focus instead on being the healthiest you. Amazingly enough, you’ll look better, be more lean, and possibly get the physique you’ve always wanted as a side benefit. Focusing on the perfect body almost always results in failure and frustration.
6. Face Your Behaviors. Being healthier means sometimes having to face behaviors that have made you feel unhealthy, and conquer them. But if you’re in denial by believing that unhealthy behaviors are actually not that bad then you won’t make progress toward health. Face up to your unhealthy behaviors, and start making changes. Bring in a professional who can help, if needed. There’s always a cause so be a detective and fact finder to discover it.
7. Keep it Simple and Straight From the Earth. Don’t get wrapped in the hype around special meal plans, cleanses, specific fitness activities, or products like supplements and shakes. Make things that come straight from the earth (in particular foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, water, and animal products) a particular focus. Once food has been altered or processed (except most frozen fruits and vegetables), it almost always loses nutritional value. As far as activity, don’t feel the need to get fancy – just get out there and move. Make it enjoyable and satisfying and you’ll be more likely to stick with it. It’s that simple.
Make your good health journey a vacation, not an assignment. Self-discovery is rewarding – enjoy it in addition to enjoying your well-deserved good health!