Physical Wellness: This is related to maintain Physical health through exercise, eating well, getting adequate sleep, and getting help for ailments when necessary. Of course, diet and exercise come to mind when we think about physical health. But did you know that sexual health, sleep, alcohol, tobacco, drug use, medication safety, and preventative medicine also fall into this category? Routine health care and regular checkups are also part of maintaining a healthy body. So, if you haven’t been to the doctor or dentist in a while — especially during this pandemic time — it is probably time to schedule a physical or cleaning. Those more familiar platforms of healthy eating and exercise are perhaps so embedded into our minds that oftentimes, we start to ignore the messages after hearing so many different strategies and varying information on these ever-popular topics. However, there are some useful and effective tips for maintaining your Physical Wellness that can apply to everyone. Some Less Common Ways to Improve Your Eating Habits When it comes to diet, have you looked into joining a local Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)? Essentially, CSAs are where communities join to support a farm or farms and jointly share the risks and benefits of those farms and crops. CSA’s and food co-ops are great opportunities to get a hold of fresh, local, and healthy foods. Check with a local dietician or nutritionist for information on a diet that’s best for your body and blood type. Keeping track of what you are eating is another good way to help with your diet. Think about how many meals you are eating at home each week. Eating at home helps you keep track of what you’re putting into your body. Tracking what you eat in a food journal or taking a cooking class can also help enhance your food journey as well. Get Your Exercise in How much exercise do you get each day? Did you know that the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) and the Center for Disease Control (CDC) both recommend getting 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity every week? That’s the same as 30 minutes/ 5 days a week. Some examples of suitable exercise are walking, running, cycling, dancing, swimming or playing sports. To build strength and improve balance, you should also add at least 2 days/week of strength training or stretching. Examples include weight lifting or yoga or tai chi. Sleep Facts How many hours of sleep do you usually get per night? The Sleep Foundation recommends that healthy adults average between 7-9 hours of sleep per night. Babies, children, and teens need more. Practicing sleep hygiene (yes it’s a real thing) by avoiding screen time, mealtime, and vigorous exercise within a few hours of bed is vital to falling asleep more easily. Also, try and hit the hay by 10 pm to be in tune with your natural circadian rhythms. What Else? Here are some general tips to help manage other aspects of your physical health. Following these will give you a chance to optimize your physical wellness, Limiting alcohol, tobacco, and drug use increases longevity. If you are struggling with addiction or substance abuse, make sure to visit the resources below for support and useful techniques. Also, if you are prescribed medication, you should keep track of what it is. You should also know how much to take and be aware of potentially dangerous drug interactions. Practicing safe sex and talking to your partner about your relationship regularly are paramount to maintaining sexual health. Keeping up to date with routine check-ups and exploring holistic health methods for extra support are recommended. Conclusion You should ask your doctor for their advice before starting a new physical wellness strategy but also keep in mind your own intentions and track feedback throughout the process. Resources: Nutrition and Diet (http://www.choosemyplate.gov) (http://www.foodpyramid.com). Exercise tracking tools (http://www.myfitnesspal.com). Sleep (http://www.healthypeople.gov/2020/topicsobjectives2020/overview. aspx?topicid=38), (http://www.mayoclinic.com/ health/sleep/HQ01387), (http://www.cdc.gov/sleep). Alcoholics Anonymous (https://aa.org) Narcotics Anonymous (https://virtual-na.org) Quit Smoking (https://health.howstuffworks.com/wellness/smoking-cessation/tools-to-help-successfully-quit-smoking.htm) Side effect safety (https://www.consumermedsafety.org/)
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