Does staying healthy seem a little too complicated sometimes, with all of the (sometimes conflicting) advice out there? Try these easy tips and you’ll be on your way to wellness.
1. Start your day with protein and fat
t Protein is proven to help you eat less throughout the day and feel more balanced and calm. Not to mention, women who start their day with protein weigh seven pounds less on average than those who don’t. Adding fat slows the absorption of your meal and balances blood sugar to help you avoid unnecessary snacking. If you can attain a four- to six-hour window between meals your body will surge in human growth hormone and give your metabolism a nice kick in the pants. The key is getting enough of the right stuff (protein and fat) to maintain the window and reap the benefits.
2. Don’t count, don’t starve
t Restricting calories or worse, starving yourself sends your body into “fight or flight” and releases the stress hormone known as cortisol. Once our body is done using glucose (blood sugar) for fuel, it begins to burn away our lean muscle. This unfortunately lowers your body’s overall need for calories and when normal grazing behaviors return you gain weight. Resetting your body’s set weight to need more calories (increased metabolism) can take weeks, but counting, starving and restricting can lower your need (metabolism) in a few short days. Limit your fasting to scheduled intermittent fasting only.
3. Sleep to thrive
t Benefits of sleep include regulation of hormones, curbing appetite and lowering inflammation. Sleep helps you manage stress and decreases depression; a good set of zzzz’s will spur creativity, improve memory and increase your overall outlook on life. For the best sleep, wear a sleep mask or invest in blackout curtains, kill the back-light of an iPhone or computer 30 minutes before bed and aim for seven to eight hours. If you’re a night owl, pick a few nights a week to stick to an early bedtime; you burn more calories sleeping than watching TV.
4. Lift something; a dumbbell, a baby or your own body weight
tThose micro-tears from weight training increase your metabolism, help you sleep soundly and increase bone density. Lifting weights is a sure way to achieve EPOC (Excessive Post Oxygen Consumption), which keeps your body burning calories long after you leave the gym. So ditch the 300-calorie Precor session for a real muscle-burner and spend those 30 minutes throwing a kettle bell around or holding a body shaking plank.
5. Maximize with minerals
t Your cells crave a delicate balance of minerals to maximize health. Sadly, with all the manmade table salt available we are bloated and left thinking salt is our enemy. Instead of ditching salt, switch to a natural salt like Pink Himalayan Salt, rich in 84 different minerals. Any chance you suffer from constipation? A lack of magnesium could be the culprit. If switching your salt up doesn’t totally do the trick, try supplementing with 400 mg of magnesium glycinate daily or a little natural calm.
t Be well. Be beautiful. Be you.
tPhoto credit: Blend Images – JGI/Jamie Grill/Getty Images