Healthy New Year’s Resolutions You Can Stick To

by Rolaika Mcfarlane

It’s hard to believe that we’re finally in 2020. Who remembers watching movies from the 90s where the year 2020 was a “far and distant future” where flying cars and robots roamed the earth? Okay, maybe slightly dramatic, but it’s still amazing that we’re starting a new year nonetheless. And with 2019 behind us, we can view 2020 as a fresh start, where setting positive health and wellness goals are not only attainable but help you feel like the very best version of yourself.

Below you will find a few health and wellness tips to add to your New Year Resolutions to help you improve upon yourself.

Eat Whole Foods – Whole foods are more nutrient-dense and protective than their processed counterparts. Plus, they lack the added sugar, salt, additives, preservatives and more that we find in most processed foods. Moving away from processed foods and toward a whole-foods diet is one of the most meaningful lifestyle changes you can make. In recent years, we’ve seen more grocery stores that specialize in whole foods pop up as well as public schools offer more healthier food alternatives.

Photo: Arthur Rutkowski

Add one More Organic Product into Your Shopping Basket Each Week: Carlo Petrini, founder of the “Slow Food Movement” says that eaters are the co-producers of food, and this means what we as consumers choose to buy has a direct impact on what farmers grow every season. If you truly want to make healthier lifestyle choices in the new year, substitute one non-organic product in your shopping basket for an organic product. The change to organic food doesn’t have to be overnight, rather something that is attainable and at a pace that feels comfortable to you. The best part is that by choosing organic you will directly impact the food chain. According to Bob Quinn, organic farmer and author of Grain by Grain: A Quest to Revive Ancient Wheat, Rural Jobs, and Healthy Food, “if you support organic and want to end “The Great Chemical Agriculture” experiment, you’ll vote with your dollar and choose organic regenerative products.” 

Make Yourself a Priority: It’s easy to feel like there isn’t enough time to make yourself a priority, but taking time to relax and recharge are essential to a healthy lifestyle. Consider investing in a daily planner that can be useful in helping you track your time. By planning out your week in advance you’ll find it easier to manage your time and know exactly when you can unwind. Another great tip? Take a social media detox! Sometimes we find ourselves glued to our phones and don’t take enough time to get in tune with ourselves.

Gut Health is More Important Than You Think: If 2019 was the year of Gut Health, 2020 will be the year to continue educating ourselves on the importance of a healthy gut. Looking after the health of your gut and maintaining the right balance of microorganisms is vital for physical and mental health, immunity, and more.

Photo: Jacob Postuma

Exercise Daily: Yes, we know, it’s one of the most cliché New Year Resolutions, but for a good reason. Exercising can increase the production of endorphins, which are known to help produce positive feelings and reduce the perception of pain. It also plays a vital role in building and maintaining strong muscles and bones. And while exercising can seem like a daunting task, it doesn’t have to be. Slowly work your way up to your exercising goals. For example, use the stairs instead of an elevator, take a walk instead of using transportation, or simply take a walk around your office. With these daily lifestyle changes, you’ll be on the way to “a healthier” you in no time. So get out there and get moving!

Get Quality Sleep: Sleep is an essential part of overall health, and sleep deprivation can lead to serious consequences. For instance, lack of sleep may increase your risk of weight gain, heart disease, and depression. There are many reasons why people don’t get enough sleep, so it’s important to focus on your schedule and lifestyle to determine the best ways to improve sleep quantity and quality. Decreasing screen time before bed (we’re all guilty of staying up binge-watching our favorite shows), cutting back on caffeine, and getting to bed at a reasonable hour are some simple ways to improve sleep hygiene.

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