2018 is officially under way, and with the new year comes reflection and excitement for new changes ahead. For many, the new year can be a great time to set personal intentions for improving various aspects of one’s health, whether for physical health, mental health, or emotional health.
While losing weight is commonly considered to be the most popular New Year goal, not every health intention needs to be centered around weight loss or a number on a scale. Ditch resolutions that may be unrealistic and that lack a concrete plan on how they will be seen through to completion. Are you looking for intentions you can set for the upcoming year to improve your mental, emotional, and physical wellness? These intentions may be the perfect ones for you to try. They’re simple, easily customizable for your own life, and will leave you feeling happier and healthier all year long.
Consciously reflect each day about what you are grateful for.
“Stop and smell the roses” is a saying we’ve all heard a thousand times, but it holds a sentiment that when practiced can bring both your mind and body significant health benefits. This year, make it an intention to consciously reflect each day on the little things that happened for which you are thankful. You can do this in many different ways- whether it’s by taking a minute to jot down a few things in a journal, or by making the effort to tell people why you are grateful for them in your life. Expressing daily gratitude not only improves your mood, but also significantly improves your physical health as well. Need proof? Here are 3 science-backed reasons why you should commit to practicing daily gratitude to help to boost your overall health.
Go meatless, just one day a week.
We’re all about promoting healthy, well-rounded diets, and we know that there’s no one way of eating that works for everyone. However, one thing we can all agree on is that incorporating more veggies into your diet can bring about big health changes. Skipping the meat in favor for produce-packed meals just once a week is a tiny change with big impacts and implications. Not only will you be making an impact on the environment, but you’ll also benefit your health. Want to learn more? Here are 7 reasons to go meatless even for just one day a week– and some delicious meal ideas to get your creative cooking juices flowing.
Ditch the diet- and focus on eating the rainbow.
Thankfully, the conversation around dieting has made a dramatic shift to one around mindful and intuitive eating, moderation, including nutrient dense foods, and steering clear of labeling foods as “good” or “bad.” Forget counting calories, and instead focus on creative ways to pack fruits and vegetables from all colors of the spectrum into your diet. Not only will you be getting a wider range of nutrients, vitamins and minerals, but you’ll get to expand outside of your comfort zone. You may find delicious new foods and meals that become staples in your kitchen.
Make more of your own meals.
Cooking more makes it easier for you to make more nutritious choices for yourself, as you know and choose exactly what goes into the food you eat. Restaurant and fast-food options are often are loaded with added salt and sugar, which you can more easily limit when choosing what to cook at home. Eating out less definitely doesn’t have to impact your social life; not only will you (and your friends!) be saving money, but inviting friends and family to cook with you can make for a fun and collaborative change of pace. Are you worried your day is just too hectic and crazy to cook your meals at home? Prepping your meals ahead of time helps thwart this excuse. If you’re want to prep more of your healthy meals in advance this year, follow these 6 tips that are sure to simplify your life.
Challenge yourself to find a motivation to workout that doesn’t have to do with appearance.
January can be an effective impetus to renew your gym membership and to re-kick your fitness habit into high gear. If you are trying to make fitness a priority this year, it can be helpful to make sure you focus on motivations to exercise that aren’t solely centered around weight loss and outside appearance. If you are trying to lose weight for health reasons, all the power to you, but it can be helpful to make sure you have other motivations to exercise which may your fitness intention easier to stick with all year long. For inspiration, check out these 6 motivations to get moving more, that have nothing to do with weight loss or the way you look.
As 2018 evolves, be open to change, to setting new goals, and allowing existing intentions to develop, shift, and grow. If you are looking for medical advice on your own personal health and wellness goals this year, our doctor network is always here for you. Click here to ask any doctor any question about your health that you may have, and you will receive an answer within a day.
Author: Maggie Harriman