Five Tips to Kickstart a Healthy Lifestyle
Setting specific goals to stop smoking, shed weight, or start exercising can be the first steps to better health. However, the hard work needed to reach those goals can feel like climbing a mountain. Try these five tips to help overcome common obstacles to making lifestyle changes, and you’ll soon be on your way to better health.
It takes 60 to 90 days to create a new habit. If you miss a day of exercise or find yourself eating extra carbs without thinking, don’t be too hard on yourself. Praise yourself for the days you do stick to your plan and keep trying. It takes practice and persistence to make new habits seem like regular part of your routine.
A supportive spouse or trustworthy friend can hold you accountable to your goals. They can also help you avoid temptation and adopt healthy habits by not bringing junk food home, taking on extra chores so you can make time for the gym, or refraining from smoking around you during your quest to give up cigarettes.
Rather than thinking of lifestyle changes as depriving yourself of good things, use the idea of replacement. You may replace one type of food with another, or replace a bad habit with a healthier activity. In the mood for a crunchy snack? Substitute raw veggies with low-fat dip for chips. Trying to quit smoking? Consider sugar-free mints as a cigarette replacement while you are kicking the habit. Addicted to TV? Exercise before television time and consider watching a show later in the evening.
Boost Stamina, Slash Stress
A lack of energy or feeling overwhelmed by stress often gets in the way of exercising. However, regular exercise can actually increase your energy levels and reduce stress. In addition to burning calories and enhancing immunity, 30 minutes a day of moderate exercise also reduces the risk of heart disease, stroke, and diabetes.
Make Your Physician a Partner
Primary care providers are a valuable source of tips and information that can help you adopt a healthier lifestyle. Your physician can help you choose goals that are realistic and effective based on your specific health profile, and help you track progress along the way.
The primary care team at LeBauer HealthCare at Oak Ridge welcomes new patients and will work closely with you to help reach individual health goals. Schedule an appointment today with a provider at any of our LeBauer locations to start making your healthy lifestyle changes.