Healthy Choices in 2023
Many people like to establish new health and fitness routines when January rolls around, and with good reason. The beginning of a new year gives you a great opportunity to wipe last year’s slate clean and give yourself a fresh, healthy start. Be mindful, though, of the fact that many people abandon their New Year’s resolutions early, with the New York Post reporting that 68% of people abandon theirs within 32 days of making them.
It doesn’t have to be this way, though, and there are certain moves you might make to avoid setting yourself up for failure while giving yourself your best possible shot at success. One such step involves setting goals, rather than resolutions.
Why goals may be easier to achieve than resolutions
The very nature of the word “resolution” creates challenges, because it comes from the word, “resolve,” which means “to decide firmly.” In other words, there isn’t a lot of wiggle room when it comes to resolutions. Goals, on the other hand, are a bit more flexible. So, focusing on goals, rather than resolutions, gives you some grace by leaving a little room for error. It also helps to start small – setting realistic, attainable goals helps prevent burnout, and it also makes mastering new tasks seem less overwhelming.
So, what are some easy goals to achieve and guidelines to follow as you head into the New Year?
Healthy Habits to Adopt in 2023
Sometimes, seemingly small changes are not only the easiest to implement, but also, the most effective. While major lifestyle changes may prove tough to keep on top of in the long run, establishing the following healthy habits may go a long way in terms of improving your overall wellness – while requiring minimal effort.
You’ve probably heard it before, but it’s worth saying again – skipping breakfast is never a good idea. On the other hand, having breakfast jump-starts your metabolism and energy levels, boosting your performance at home, work or school. And you don’t have to have a huge breakfast to benefit from the effects – instead, even eating a granola bar has the potential to help prevent you from overindulging later.
Another easy way to boost your health and wellness is to stay hydrated. All bodies and cells need water to work properly, and drinking enough water helps regulate your body temperature, prevent wrinkles, flush body waste and improve performance during exercise, among other major benefits.
It’s common knowledge that exercise is good for the body, but there are added benefits that come with exercising outdoors. Studies have repeatedly shown that walking amongst trees and greenery has mood-boosting effects. Being in the sunshine also raises Vitamin D levels, which in turn benefits your bones, heart and mood.
Healthy Heart Habits to Adopt in 2023
While eating breakfast, staying hydrated and getting enough fresh air all have advantages, there are other efforts you might make to improve your heart health heading into 2023. Consider taking the following steps to keep your heart healthy in the year to come.
The bad news: cigarette smoking is the leading preventable cause of death, disease and disability in America. The good news: the number of cigarette smokers out there continues to steadily decline. If you are among the minority that still smokes, commit to quitting in 2023.
Lower blood pressure and cholesterol
High cholesterol raises the odds of a heart attack or stroke, so do what you can to lower yours. For many people, this involves a combination of diet, exercise and medication. High blood pressure, too, leads to health risks, and it’s also leading cause of both stroke and disability. Maintaining a healthy weight and getting enough exercise each day helps lower blood pressure levels and reduce associated health hazards.
Healthy Eating Habits to Adopt in 2023
Establishing healthy habits is the key to eating healthy, and some seemingly small efforts can go a long way as far as setting you up for long-term success. Consider making the following modifications to your diet as you head into 2023.
Substitute spaghetti squash for pasta
If you’ve yet to try substituting spaghetti squash for standard pasta, now’s the time! The strands of this vegetable look a whole lot like traditional spaghetti, and when you stir in meat, cheese and sauce, you might not even miss the real stuff.
Forgo frying in favor of baking
Many fried dishes have healthier alternative cooking methods. Rather than fry, say, chicken, consider coating it in olive oil, adding bread crumbs and then baking it in the oven.
Fill up on fruits and veggies
The most effective diets and lifestyle changes are typically those that are easiest to implement, and filling at least half of your plate with fresh fruits and veggies is a great place to start. That way, you still get to enjoy more indulgent options without feeling guilty.
It’s not easy to make New Year’s resolutions stick, but you don’t have to set yourself up for failure, either. By setting realistic goals and making moderate, manageable lifestyle changes, you should be able to start the New Year off right – and give your newly cemented health habits some serious staying power.