Top Tips for Getting Healthy This Spring
Cold weather can encourage poor health habits. When daylight is limited and temperatures are low, many of us opt to spend time in the comfort of our living rooms instead of exercising.
But fortunately, the cold weather is behind us. With plenty of warm weather ahead of us, we’re encouraging all community members to go outside and stay active. Physical activity and exercise not only improves your overall health but also reduces the risk of developing chronic diseases, like diabetes and heart disease.
Build a fitness routine that allows you to enjoy the weather
Take advantage of the warm weather by building a workout regimen that allows you to spend time outside. Instead of dreading your workout, the warmer weather should motivate you to stay active. Plan an outdoor workout routine around your preferred forms of exercise, whether that’s running, biking or playing a sport. To start off, aim for at least 30 minutes per day.
Prioritize your mental health
COVID-19 has had far-reaching effects on many individuals’ mental health. As the coronavirus swept across communities, it led to depression and feelings of isolation for many individuals, especially among older adults and those who live alone. As we begin to turn the corner on the pandemic, it’s important to prioritize your emotional well-being.
One of the best ways to prioritize your mental health is by spending more time outside. Researchers believe exposure to sunlight helps to increase the brain’s release of serotonin, a hormone that improves your mood and makes you feel calm and comfortable.
If you’re feeling stressed out by work or your personal life, schedule time for yourself. Find an outdoor activity that helps clear your mind and relax. It can be simple, like gardening or walking through the park. And don’t hesitate to ask for help. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, reach out to your health care provider to ask for advice.
Rethink your diet
It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the latest dietary trend, but it’s more important to develop a well-rounded diet that fits your tastes. You don’t have to redesign your entire diet all at once. If it’s easier, focus on making incremental improvements. Cut down on sodium, limit sugar and trans fats and eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. As farmers’ markets begin reopening, try to buy healthy foods from local producers. If you have trouble motivating yourself to eat healthy, find friends or family members who are also interested in improving their diet. You can keep one another accountable.
Don’t skip your checkups
Waiting too long for routine care can lead to health complications down the road. Fear of exposure to COVID-19 prevented many patients from scheduling health appointments, but in many cases, visiting your doctor is safer than delaying care. In addition to in-person appointments, many hospitals also offer telehealth visits for primary care patients. Reach out to your health care provider today to schedule an appointment.