Change your diet, change your life
Posted on July 16, 2020
From musubi to malasada, Hawaii’s multicultural landscape has made food a very important part of life. The high cost of living here also impacts the choices we make when it comes to eating. Furthermore, as health care professionals, many of us have a mindset of putting others first, which sometimes causes us to neglect our own health and well-being.
As a result, sometimes the “best deal” or an easy, in-the-moment craving ends up creating unhealthy patterns of consumption. Having a high-stress job taking care of others can also trigger you to reach for sugary or fatty foods and snacks.
However, as health workers, we often come across patients dealing with cancer, obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, and other serious health issues that can cut life short and cause people to miss out on graduations, weddings, and other meaningful milestones. While several factors can contribute to disease and deterioration of the body, I have witnessed firsthand and studied the impact of diet and lifestyle choices on the body for more than 20 years.
Every time you eat or drink something, you are feeding disease or fighting it. The good news is that small changes in your daily diet and exercise routine can help you avoid or even reverse the effects of disease. Making the decision to regain control of your health is a long process, but it doesn’t have to be a drastic decision right away. Even those who gradually make little changes can reset their bodies and live a longer, healthier life.
3 moves for a healthier you
Whether you’re behind the desk or out in the field, what you pack for lunch and snacks can impact every aspect of your day, from energy levels, to mood, and even sleep quality. Here are a few quick tips for a healthier diet and a healthier you.
- Put water first – If you are not naturally a water-drinker, try dressing up your water with fresh sliced fruits or berries, cucumbers, or mint for an infused drink. Herbal teas are also a healthier choice than sugary sodas and juices. Use a large water bottle to measure your hydration throughout the day. Many times, a simple headache can be a sign of dehydration.
- Healthy snacks – Instead of going through the drive-thru during moments of stress, keep these items at your desk or in your car: raw mixed nuts, sliced fruit or veggies, and some small hummus or avocado cups for dipping. Make healthy nut butter and sliced fruit (bananas, kiwi, strawberries) sandwiches.
- Add healthy choices – Most people think of healthy changes as restrictive and giving up all things delicious, but you can get on the path toward a healthier you by introducing things into your diet that nourish your body. If you do not want to give up mac salad right away, try to get into the habit of eating a scoop of healthy veggies first. Strive to eat 5-7 servings of fresh fruits, berries, and veggies daily.
I invite you to consider making small healthier choices, and with any new health routine, be sure to reach out to your trusted physician with questions or concerns. Check out my blog at www.NurseTami.com for more tips and resources on nutrition. Our goals are to educate, enlighten and encourage people to live healthier, more vibrant lives.
Yours in good health ~ Tami