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So far Crystal Petrello has created 230 blog entries.

Top Wellness Tips from 2022

Can you believe we’re waving goodbye to 2022? As we set our sights on a new year with new goals, we reflect on the trends that shaped our year. Our overall health and wellness are at the forefront as we emerge from the pandemic, so we’ve compiled our top wellness tips from 2022. Boost Your Immune System Staying healthy and avoiding sickness is certainly fresh on all our minds. Recent years have highlighted how important it is to keep our immune system as strong as possible. Eat the rainbow by choosing different colored fruits and vegetables to help ensure you’re getting the necessary nutrients. Talk with your doctor to find out if you’re getting enough Vitamin D, which can also help regulate your immune system. Other ways to keep your body healthy include exercise, adequate sleep, stress management, and washing [...]

Thriving During the Holidays

The holidays are a special time of year filled with wonder and excitement. However, with all the hustle and bustle, they can quickly become stressful, anxiety-inducing, and even depressing. Holidays can be full of nostalgia and endless expectations. It’s a time when we can be overwhelmed with family get-togethers, yet our hearts can ache for those who cannot be there. Our schedules start to overflow with events, and our healthy habits tend to go out the window as quickly as our budget for the season. With all these demands and constantly changing feelings, it can be difficult to get through the holidays, let alone enjoy them. Let’s look at several ways to make this season less frightful and more delightful. Make a Plan Schedules and emotions are always easier to manage when you have a plan. Prioritize your list of [...]

5 Ways to Keep Your Exercise Consistent All Year

It’s hard enough to begin an exercise routine, let alone be consistent with one long-term. Between the change in seasons, fluctuating daylight hours, and holiday seasons, healthy habits can be hard to maintain. We’ve got five ways to help you stay on track with your exercise year-round. Plan Your Workout We often say things like, “I need to be more active” or “I need to be more consistent with my exercise.” But then, the next week rolls around, and we say the same thing. While these are admirable goals to have, action requires appropriate planning. Think about your week ahead and how you can plan specifically to fit in exercise. Plan the days, times, duration, and type of each workout. This gives you a clear picture of your exercise goals for the week. And you’ve already accounted for other obligations [...]

Holiday Eating

Holidays are all about food and traditions like baking grandma’s famous pie recipe with your kids each year. It is ok to indulge in your favorite holiday treats but try to be mindful of your portion sizes during holiday celebrations. Use the tips below to set you up for success this holiday season. Tricks to use while at the party Volunteer to bring a salad or fruit platter to the party. Bringing an appetizer or entrée allows you to have access to a nutritious choice. Have a small snack before going to a holiday party. If you arrive to a party feeling hungry, you may have oversized portions during the meal. How do I build a heathy snack? Combine two food groups together to create a nutritious and filling snack. For example, a great choice would be an apple with [...]

Understanding Activity Tracker Stats

  Activity trackers, smart watches, and heart rate monitors are becoming increasingly popular tools for individual health and wellness. In fact, wearable technology was named the number one fitness trend for 2022 by the American College of Sports Medicine. These fun gadgets can track all kinds of stats. But what does that information really mean? We’re going to take a closer look at some popular trackable features and how you can use that information to positively impact your wellness. Steps The concept of step-tracking has been around since the 1700s. However, the first activity tracker was not invented until 1965 by Dr. Yoshiro Hatano, a Japanese professor. This tracker was a pedometer called a Manpo-kei, which translates to “10,000 steps meter." His research suggested that 10,000 steps per day along with a nutritious diet would help individuals maintain their health [...]

Gut-Lung Axis

Health starts in your gut – listen to it! Lots of different types of bacteria, viruses, and fungi call your body home, and most of them live in your gut. This bacteria in the gut, or the gut microbiome, is responsible for much more than just digestive problems. In fact, bacteria get a bad reputation - some causes disease but others are important for your health.  They help dictate how we feel and how our bodies function. When there isn’t enough diversity in your gut microbiome, it increases the risk of chronic diseases. What is the gut-lung axis? You may have heard that there is a connection between your gut and your brain, but did you know that there’s also a connection between your gut and your lungs? Long-term digestive problems can make you more likely to develop breathing problems. [...]

Mindful Breathing

We breathe all day long without thinking much about it. But what if we were to stop and pay attention to our inhaling and exhaling? How could that impact our health? Let’s take a look at mindful breathing and how it can enhance our well-being. What Is Mindful Breathing? Mindful breathing combines parts of deep breathing with practicing mindfulness. The aspects of this breathing style bring focus to the present moment. It’s more than just breathing in and breathing out. It’s paying attention to how you feel with each breath. Positive Psychology states, “You are not trying to change your breathing in any way, and because of this, there are no expectations; you are merely aware of the breath from moment to moment.” Mindful breathing can take practice because it doesn’t always come naturally. You’re intentionally drawing your concentration to [...]

Benefits of Yogurt

Yogurt contains many important nutrients including calcium, potassium, vitamin D, and protein.  Both vitamin D and calcium are utilized in the body to build and maintain strong bones and teeth, which helps prevent osteoporosis. Potassium-rich foods may help regulate blood pressure to support heart health. What is the difference between regular yogurt and Greek yogurt? Both types of yogurts contain live bacteria (probiotics) that support gut health and the immune system. Greek yogurt is thicker than regular yogurt and their nutritional values differ. Greek yogurt is higher in protein than regular yogurt while regular yogurt is usually higher in calcium than Greek yogurt. Both are excellent choices to include in your meal plan. Choose plain or lower-added sugar yogurts since both types can be high in added sugar when flavored. Ways to use yogurt in your meals Replace sour cream [...]

5 Plant Proteins to Eat Today

A healthy diet should include plenty of plants: Fruit, vegetables, legumes/beans, nuts/seeds, potatoes, and whole grains. Usually, we don’t think of plants as having protein. The great thing about plants is they are a natural low/no fat option. Low in fat and packed with fiber encourages heart health. Here are the 5 trending plant-based proteins that you can easily add to your meals. Soybean, soy milk, and tofu Soybeans are a type of legume/bean. The bean can be turned into milk or the soy liquids can be turned into tofu (much like the way cheese is made). Soy products offer high-quality protein, vitamins, and minerals, along with phytoestrogens that may have a positive effect on hormones. Chickpeas (Garbanzo beans) Chickpeas have a nutty taste and grainy texture. The most common chickpea dishes are falafel and hummus. However, you can easily [...]

6 Ways to Exercise Sustainably

Did you know you can lend a hand in taking care of our environment by the way you exercise? Sustainability in our exercise starts with treating our resources responsibly. We’re taking a look at six ways we can exercise more sustainably. Drink from Reusable Water Bottles Proper hydration before, during, and after exercise is a necessity. However, plastic water bottles can pile up as waste in landfills. Less than one-third of plastic bottles actually get recycled (Beyond Plastics). Most reusable water bottles hold almost double the amount of water as a typical plastic bottle. This makes reusable water bottles not only a smart choice for the environment but a smart choice for your wallet too! Exercise Outdoors Use natural resources for your workout! Take a walk at a nearby park. Go hiking with friends or family members. Save money and [...]