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August, Back-To-School, and the Fall Season Ahead of Us

We’ve heard it once, and then many times over that the year 2020 has been unanticipated and unprecedented. It felt like yesterday when we were officially facing a pandemic, and here we are now finishing up the summer season and with students across America going back to school. There’s an option for going to school in-person or virtually, but whichever the case, a lot of people will face adjusting to working routines and look forward to more unknowns as the Fall season arrives.

What does this observation have to do with our health? For starters, self-care is an ongoing thing and a habit. Similar to how students are developing their systems of waking up earlier in the morning and keeping focused in class, everyone should have their daily habits in place to nourish their bodies, have adequate rest, and adhere to advise from their healthcare providers. Engaging in physical activity should not be a cyclical habit occurring in New Year Resolution January, as we time and time again see every year with a spike in gym membership enrollments [1]. You can beat the crowds by keeping a consistent habit of walking and running outdoors and lifting at the comforts in your own home year-round.

Eating healthy is another important and vital habit that should be routine. Self offers wonderful advice on making your own meal plans: (1) Don’t skip meals, (2) Hydrate throughout the day, (3) Have whole foods that grow from the ground, (4) Read the nutrition label to be informed of food content, (6) Beware of added sugars, and (7) Don’t forget to treat yourself once in a while [2]. Having whole foods is particularly important because fruits and vegetables typically require you to chew before you ingest.

Notice how fast-food restaurants prepare foods such as burgers, fries, sandwiches, and pizza that are soft and easy to chew that you can literally breathe in your food. Even the hard tacos are not that “hard” at all. This is one of the food properties that can leave you feeling wanting more, and the “full” feeling may not be triggered. Healthful alternatives include whole-grain pasta mixed with vegetables like broccoli and lettuce with a piece of fruit that can do wonders to your health when made consistently over time.

Finally, as you go about your day and might schedule a visit with your doctor once or twice a year, know that your health and outcomes really depends on you. There really is no quick fix or silver bullet as we allude to the previous post on vitamins. The valuable pieces of information that you could gain from your healthcare provider are where your health status stands at the time of visit. What happens beyond the walls of the clinic is really up to you. Strive to commit to an exercise and diet plan every day, and you will likely see results.

References

[1] Poon, L. (2019). The rise and fall of new year’s fitness resolutions, in 5 charts. Retrieved from https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-01-16/here-s-how-quickly-people-ditch-weight-loss-resolutions

[2] Cohen, M. (2018). How to eat healthy: 25 easy ways to eat healthier every day. Retrieved from https://www.self.com/story/20-ways-to-eat-healthier

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