I have enjoyed seeing first day of school pictures this week! As we enter the new school year, I thought it was fitting to discuss some tips to help us get on a healthy living routine! There are many components to living a healthy life, but healthy eating and exercise are at the top of that list. So, what does it take to provide you and your family with healthy meals and regular exercise….with an already busy schedule? Here are a few tips to get you on the right track:
- Drink water – Drinking enough water during the day will help you feel fuller at meals, clear out unwanted “junk” from your body, and can aid in weight loss. Aim to get at least 8 glasses (64oz) of water every day. Send a water bottle to school with your kids and also keep one with you throughout your day.
- Get adequate sleep – Getting adequate sleep can be difficult with a busy schedule, but it is very important to provide proper recovery from exercise and to help manage stress and mood. It also helps keep you and your family focused throughout the day. Aim to get at least 7-8 hours of restful sleep a night.
- Get moving – Try to get outside a few nights every week with your family. Exercise boosts calorie burn and promotes healthy bones, muscles, and hearts. Get active 30-60 minutes every day to maximize these benefits. Biking, walking, swimming, are a few ideas.
- Prepare meals ahead of time – Grabbing fast food has become an easy way to fill up without spending much time doing it, but it is not a great option when it comes to overall health. Meal preparation is a great way to eat healthy while also saving some time during a busy day. You can control what goes into these meals, and will help cut back on eating fast food when in a hurry. You can also try batch cooking where you make a bigger batch of a meal, separate into smaller containers, and freeze. They are easy to grab and prepare in a pinch! Chili, casseroles, taco meat, and soups are great to try with this.
- Spend time with healthy people – The people you spend the most time with have a large impact on your habits. Being around people with healthy habits will have a positive impact on your own personal habits. Along the same lines, your children learn from the examples you set for them. The habits they form now are habits they will have as they grow up. Make time to sit down and have meals together, engage in family activities, and involve your children in healthy living practices.
There are many pieces that go into living a healthy lifestyle and it is important for us to practice improving each one of them. Keep in mind that simple, small changes can lead to large benefits in the end! Focusing on lifestyle changes and improvements is key to success long term. If you would like more help improving you and your family’s nutrition, activity, and wellness, contact us today!
-Written by Kala Nurnberg, SDSU Dietetic Student
-Kelsey Raml, MS, RD, LN