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 your hands regularly.
Choose Healthy Ways to Manage Stress
Difficult situations come and go, whether they are planned for or unexpected. It’s not uncommon to feel stress on a daily basis, and it can affect every system of our body. While we usually cannot eliminate stress, we can choose how we respond and react to it. Pay attention to your body’s individual warning signs like changes in appetite, irritability, sleeplessness, or tension. When these arise, take a step back and ask yourself how to manage your response better. Try strategies like deep breathing, meditation, or walking outside to help lower your stress levels.
Mindfulness is being present and paying attention to yourself and your surroundings in a non-judgmental way. It has a multitude of benefits including healthier decision-making, stress management, better focus, and improved mental health. We can practice mindful stress management with deep breathing exercises, meditation, and showing compassion for ourselves and others. Eating more mindfully by focusing on what we eat, when we eat, how much we eat, and why we eat can help encourage healthier eating choices. It can help with weight management and better digestion too! We can practice mindful exercise by creating an exercise plan, reflecting on how we feel before and afterward, noticing progressions and regressions, and being aware of our environment. By incorporating mindfulness into our physical activity, we can train a more consistent habit and lower our risk of injury. Practicing mindfulness creates more awareness that can keep our health goals at the top of our priority list.
Create Healthy Work-from-Home Habits
Working from home has gained popularity over the last couple of years. While this comes with increased flexibility and time saved from commuting, it also brings numerous other challenges. Set yourself up for success at home by creating a space designed for work. Take breaks to stand, move, and look away from your screen frequently. Plan your meals for the day ahead of time to minimize mindless walks to the fridge. Incorporate regular activity by walking during your lunch break or using a workout app for home exercise. You can still keep up with your healthy habits if you’re intentional about it, but they might look different than what you were used to before working from home.
Schedule Your Preventive Check-Ups
During the pandemic, many of our preventive healthcare visits got canceled. Life got busy, and some of them didn’t get rescheduled. Use this time to get back on track with your preventive check-ups. If you have a primary care physician, talk with them about the appropriate screenings for your age, gender, and family history. If you don’t have a primary care provider, then start there and schedule your annual physical today. It’s always necessary to create a relationship with your doctor, review your biometrics, and address any areas of concern before they become serious problems.
Just because the year is winding down doesn’t mean these health trends have to wind down too. Which ones have you been working on? How will you continue and improve upon these habits in 2023? Carry these tips with you as you ring in the new year!
Written by BWS Lead Health Coach- Kelly Schlather, BS, ASCM – CEP
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