5 Tips for a Healthier Summertime You
Summer is a good season to review your approach to diet and exercise. With so many fresh fruits and vegetables available, you can try more options for getting your antioxidants. The warm weather also removes the indoor limits of a workout.
Check out these five tips for a “balance and basics” approach to health from Dr. Meena Malhotra, an internal medicine physician at Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge, Illinois:
- Focus on changing your lifestyle, not going on a diet. The difference is long-term rather than short-term, and it’s all in the mindset.
- Think in terms of losing fat, not losing weight. The proper proportion of muscles, bones and water will define your body composition.
- Go for moderation. “Extreme changes will lead to binges,” says Malhotra, who advises against completely banning any foods from your diet. Instead, find healthier versions of your favorite recipes, and treat yourself every once in a while. “Starvation mode leads to a decrease in muscle mass and poor body composition,” Malhotra says.
- Build a support system. Invite family and friends to join you in getting more fit and eating more healthfully.
- Switch up your workout. If you’re a runner, start biking or take up swimming. If you love strength training, add in some cardio. A great way to change it up is to take a new exercise class.
“Try to get enough of all the healthy food groups,” Malhotra recommends. “Incorporate brisk walks outside to enjoy the fresh flowers and green grass.”