The majority of Americans if asked would say they would like to weigh a little less. As the most sophisticated culture in history, it seems odd to me that we also struggle the most with health and wellness. The solution for being healthy may be simpler than we are made to believe. There are so many powerful influences in the pharmaceutical, food and agricultural industries confusing us about what is and isn't healthy.
The first and most important component of a healthy lifestyle is to have balanced primary foods. Primary foods are things such as relationships, spirituality, physical activity, career etc. Without balance in your primary foods there isn't enough broccoli to keep you healthy. Once your primary foods are covered, here are 10 tips to help stay light and fit:
1) Drink water, half your body weight in ounces is a good rule of thumb. (200 lbs = 100 ounces per day). Hunger is many times confused with dehydration.
2) Eat real carbs like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, seeds and legumes which will slow digestion and promote stable blood sugar levels.
3) Eat healthy fats such as nuts, seeds, fish, avocados and extra virgin olive oil. Your body uses these for energy, healthy air, skin, nails and brain function.
4) Eat lean protein. When eating animal protein, be conscious of how the animal was raised with grass fed and free range being Optimal.
5) Eat breakfast. When we miss our first fuel of the day it sets us up for nibbling and snacking for the rest of the day.
6) Eat more frequently. Feeding your body on a regular basis lets it know that food is available and it's okay to burn energy rather than conserve it and store is as fat.
7) Exercise your body and mind. The more active your body and brain, the healthier you will be. If you have a fit bit, shoot for at least 10,000 steps per day.
8) Sleep! 7-8 hours per day. People that get less than 5 hours of sleep per night average 5 lbs more than those who get adequate sleep.
9) Learn to cook. This allows you to control portion size and use healthy ingredients.
10) Keep track of what you eat. Consciously avoid sugars, trans fats, high fructose corn syrup and long chemical names. You wouldn't feed your favorite pet poison, so give yourself the same courtesy.
Warren Buffett says that investing is "Simple, not easy." Being healthy is the same way. Through desire, education and awareness, my hope is that we can make the simplicity of being healthy a little easier.