Why is Wellness Important?
Over the past year, we have all experienced new challenges that have affected our physical, mental, and social well-being. Many of us have felt tired and stressed, which is why wellness and self-care are more important than ever. Your wellness journey is an ongoing one, and YOU are in the driver’s seat! We are sharing some new ideas to care for your many dimensions of wellness, so you can nurture your mind and nourish your body. Here are 21 health and wellness tips from New Chapter that you can use to support your wellness journey in 2021.
Health and Wellness Tips for 2021:
1. Exercise: Regular physical activity has many benefits for both your physical and mental well-being! It is one of the most important things you can do to maintain your health. Exercise can be done anywhere, including at home or at the gym. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), regular exercise can help with weight management, reduce your risk of heart disease, and strengthen your bones and muscles. If you are unsure about getting active or worried about getting hurt, try walking. Walking is a gentle exercise considered safe for most people. If you are looking for something more intense, consider jogging, weightlifting, or yoga. Whether at home or the gym, regular exercise can help you stay happy and healthy.
2. Drink Water Regularly: Not drinking enough water throughout the day can leave you feeling sore, tired, and unfocused. How much water should you be drinking? The answer depends on multiple factors, including your health, diet, physical activity, and general lifestyle. You have probably heard the 8 glasses a day rule, but it is a bit tricky because people also get hydration from other beverages and from fruits and veggies, too. In general, you can stay appropriately hydrated by drinking water throughout the day, and if you feel thirsty. If you live in a warmer climate or are more active daily, you may need to drink more water.
Try carrying a reusable water bottle with you to make sure you get enough water every day. Did you know you can even download an app to track how much water you are drinking? Tracking water intake in a day planner can also be satisfying.
3. Track Your Fitness: If you are exercising, that is fantastic! But how do you know if you are getting enough exercise and variety from week to week? Fortunately, there are a lot of ways to track your fitness. Many fitness tracking apps are available for your phone or smartwatch, and most of them are free. A fitness tracking app can help you understand how active you are every day, so you can set goals or adjust your lifestyle as needed. You can also try an exercise watch or fitness band, which can read your heart rate and tell you how many steps you take daily. If you want a technology-free solution, use a notebook to log your efforts, or get a workout buddy and support each other.
4. Take a Multivitamin: A balanced diet helps you maintain good physical and mental health. However, busy adults are prone to making unhealthy meal choices or skipping meals altogether, so they may not get enough nutrients on a given day. Taking a multivitamin is an easy way to fill nutritional gaps in your eating pattern. New Chapter’s multivitamins are formulated for absorption with fermented nutrients and made with organic vegetables and herbs. Need help remembering to take your vitamins? Try setting a phone alarm or getting a vitamin case.
5. Stand Up Every 30 Minutes While Working: It is easy to forget to take breaks at work, especially when many employees are still working from home. However, frequent breaks can keep us focused and alert throughout the workday. Plus, studies show that sitting for too long can be detrimental to your health. Here is an easy tip: Stand up every 30 minutes while working. Stretch, go for a short walk, or take care of a small chore. If your schedule is completely booked, there are many stretches you can do right at your desk! Take time for yourself during your busy workday; your mind and body will thank you.
6. Get Outside: Nature is a great remedy for stress. Sometimes, there is nothing better for your mental and emotional wellness than going outside. The American Heart Association says that spending time in nature can relieve stress, improve mood, and generally boost your well-being. During the workweek, consider stepping outside on your lunch break. On the weekends, participate in outdoor activities such as gardening, walking, or cycling.
7. Drink Smoothies: Let us face it—we all need to eat more fruits and vegetables. Fortunately, smoothies are one of the healthiest and most versatile drinks around. You can make your smoothie sweet with fruit or pack a healthy punch with spinach. Reach for fresh ingredients such as bananas, oranges, and carrots, or frozen items like berries or chopped greens. Add protein powder for post-workout recovery. Whatever your taste, drink a smoothie to fill in the gaps in your daily nutrition.
8. Get Enough Sleep
Being well-rested is good for your wellness! That is right, getting a full night’s sleep is an important part of holistic health. According to the CDC, adults aged 18-60 need a minimum of 7 hours of sleep a night. However, struggling to get to sleep is a common problem among adults. Inability to fall asleep and poor sleep quality can be due to a variety of reasons, from stress to noise to the distractions of technology. Improve your sleep naturally by establishing a nightly sleep routine. Turn off devices such as phones and computers an hour before you go to bed. Reserve that time for quiet activities such as reading, journaling, or drinking herbal tea. Before bed, try taking a multiherbal sleep aid to combat restlessness and promote deep, sound sleep.*
9. Choose Organic Foods When Possible: Organic foods are good for you and for the planet. Pure and simple. The benefits of choosing organic include better nutrient content and less chemical residue. When possible, reach for organic meats, cheeses, and produce at the store. Look for organic certifications on labels to ensure your food was grown with care for the planet. Farmers’ markets, co-ops, and local farms are great places to find organic options. A recent innovation in organic farming is regenerative agriculture. Regenerative agriculture goes a step beyond organic by managing the land with holistic, forward-thinking methods. Learn more about regenerative growers and brands that are committed to using regenerative organic ingredients.
10. Practice Gratitude Journaling: Taking time to give thanks can be an instant mood-booster! Gratitude journaling can improve our overall well-being by helping us be more appreciative of our lives and the people around us. Writing is key because it helps our brains consciously recognize the information. The more you engage in positive writing, the more you recognize the good things around you. So, focus on the things in life you are most grateful for, no matter how big or small, and make a list every day. See how your happiness and satisfaction grow over time.
11. Read Books: Are you looking for a screen-free activity to add some variety to your routine? Try reading more books! Reading is a relaxing activity you can do anywhere and at any time of day. Reading is known to reduce stress levels by giving your brain a break from the busyness that weighs us down. It exercises your brain and keeps your memory in tip-top condition. Reading at night or before bed can even help you fall asleep.
12. Eat More Fruits and Vegetables: Many people struggle to get enough fruits and vegetables in their daily meals. Fruits and vegetables are the cornerstones of a healthy diet because they are packed with nutrients and provide dietary fiber. Different colors deliver different phytonutrients, so try to eat a rainbow of options. To help make every bite count, add servings of fruit and colorful vegetables to more meals throughout your week. Sliced fruit and veggies make great snacks, too. If you do not love eating fruits or vegetables on their own, try cooking them into foods you already enjoy or adding them to smoothies. Leafy greens like spinach and kale are especially easy to disguise in soups, smoothies, and pasta sauces.
13. Fix Your Posture: Good posture can inform good form when exercising, helping you to avoid injuries while active. But what does good posture look like? According to Harvard health experts, good posture means having your shoulders and hips even, chin parallel to the floor, and weight evenly distributed on both feet. If you are feeling a little out of balance, simple exercises can help to improve your posture. Focus specifically on stretches and activities that build muscle strength and improve your balance. Ask your healthcare practitioner for help if needed.
14. Take a Daily Probiotic: A healthy gut means a healthy you! Keep your body and biome balanced by taking a daily probiotic supplement. Probiotics (the friendly kind of bacteria and yeasts) are what help us digest food, produce vitamins, eliminate toxins, and more. Much of our immune system is based in the gut, so good digestive health means good holistic health. New Chapter All-Flora™ Probiotic is crafted to replenish the good bacteria in your gut while reducing the bad, helping to promote probiotic activity and boost gut health.
15. Get Vaccinated: Vaccines are considered a safe, effective, and important way to protect your health! Getting vaccinated significantly lowers your risk of getting infected by serious diseases or experiencing complications from common illnesses like the flu. It also keeps your family and friends safe by reducing your risk of spreading illnesses. Check in regularly with your healthcare provider to make sure you are up to date on your vaccines.
16. Minimize Your Sugar Intake: Cutting back on sugar in your diet can help you lose weight and improve your overall nutrition. It seems simple enough, but do you know what to look for? Sugar comes in a lot of different forms; some you may recognize and some you may not. Check the nutrition label on packaging for ingredients such as sucrose, glucose, fructose, corn syrup, or hydrolyzed starch. All of these are sugars! A simple way to cut back on sugar is to make healthier choices in the store.
- Reach for fresh, organic produce instead of processed foods.
- Choose unsweetened oatmeal over that sugary cereal.
- Consider replacing sweetened juice cocktails with 100% fruit juice (with no added sugar or flavors).
- Swap your sweetened yogurt for plain yogurt; sweeten it yourself with fresh fruit.
17. Meditate: Give your brain a break by meditating! Anyone can practice meditation, just about anywhere and at any time. Meditation is considered a mind-body practice, meaning it has beneficial effects on both your physical and mental well-being. That makes it a great tool in your toolkit for reducing the stress and anxiety that come along with everyday life. According to the Mayo Clinic, meditating can keep you calmer throughout the day and help you better manage some existing medical conditions (especially ones worsened by stress).
18. Listen to Music: Life can be stressful for everyone. If you begin to feel overwhelmed, try listening to music. Research conducted by Johns Hopkins found that music has many positive health benefits, including reducing anxiety, lowering blood pressure, and improving sleep quality. Did you know that listening to a familiar song can even help with memory recall? Listen to music while working or before going to bed at night to tap into its calming effects!
19. Spend Time with Friends and Family: Human beings are social animals. Connection and community are a critical part of maintaining our wellness. So, reach out to your family, friends, and neighbors. If you are unable to spend time in person, try connecting over a phone call, video call, text, or email. Consider reaching out to and getting involved in your local community as well! Attend a local event such as a dinner, festival, or town hall. Introduce yourself to new people; you might even make some new friends. Remember, everybody needs a little extra connection sometimes.
20. Put Down Electronics: Sometimes it feels like no matter where you are, your phone, laptop, or tablet is just an arm’s length away. While technology has many proven benefits, it can also be a strain on your well-being. Your mind is tired! Give your brain some rest by putting down your cellphone and closing your laptop. Encourage your family to join you and have a technology-free family night! Try screen-free alternatives like board games, lawn games, or reading.
21. Organize Your Days: Get organized! Developing a daily routine is a simple way to care for your well-being. Having an established, repetitive schedule can help remove stress and anxiety from your day. By following a routine, it is easy to establish healthy habits like exercising. To create your daily routine, try doing activities like chores at the same time every day. Meal-prep or plan to remove additional decisions throughout the week. Do not forget to schedule time for self-care!