There’s nothing better than kicking off the year learning about nutrition and fitness! Last week, I hopped online to join the “Stronger for Good” Virtual Health and Wellness Fitness Event. The event was sponsored by Anytime Fitness and charity partner, Movemeant Foundation. The event consisted of two different tracks, one focused on fitness and health, the other on wellness and nutrition. I left the event armed with some pretty useful tips, so I thought I’d summarize some of my learnings here!
The first session I watched was” Dump the Diet Fads”, led by Emily Hochman, founder of Wellory. Wellory is an app that offers 1-1 personal nutrition coaching. Emily and three Wellory nutrition coaches shared their tips in the areas of self-care, nutrient-dense foods, and immunity boosters. Even if you’ve already heard these tips before, it’s a good reminder to take care of ourselves!
“Self-care” is often a term we hear a lot about. What is it exactly? and is it the same for every person? “Self-care” can be defined as how we take care of ourselves. Everyone’s approach is different. For some people it means finding time alone to enjoy a warm beverage, free of distractions. Clearing our schedule so we get the recommended 7-8 hours of sleep is another way to people practice self-care. For me, alone time with Alexa pumping out my favorite tunes is a great way to recharge. (When was the last time I had the house to myself during the pandemic?) Self-care doesn’t have to involve expensive or complicated endeavors!
The Wellory picks for self-care:
– Enjoying a cup of hot water with lemon
– Getting sleep and clearing your mind
– Distraction-free eating
– Taking a bath to relax and recharge emotionally and mentally
Keeping our immune systems strong is important year-round, not just during winter months. The tips the Wellory team shared focused on gut health. Why is gut health (the balance of microorganisms that live in our digestive tract) important when it comes to our immune systems? A healthy gut consists of healthy bacteria and immune cells that protect us from bad bacteria, viruses, and fungi. Healthy gut = strong immune system able to ward off the evil intruders.
The Wellory immune boosting tips:
– Getting 7-8 hours of sleep each night
– Eating foods rich in probiotics (Kefir, kimchi, sauerkraut )
– Eating whole grains, fruits and veggies, and other fiber rich foods (since 80% of our immune system lives in our gut
– Starting the day with a “fireball shot” (hot water, lemon, turmeric, cayenne and honey)
Now that we know the importance of creating a healthy gut biome, what should we be eating? The Wellory team shares their picks for nutrient rich foods, and some are easier to fit into your diet than you think!
The Wellory fav picks:
– Kale – contains a good dose of iron, calcium, and antioxidants; foods high in antioxidants help the body remove unwanted toxins
– Legumes – this class of food contains peas, beans and lentils, and are known for being rich in vitamins, minerals and fiber; they are easy to add to most any meal
– Bananas – these vitamin rich fruits make a convenient snack food that boosts energy, they rank low to medium on the glycemic index, so they don’t cause your blood sugar levels to spike
– Simple and manageable recipes – finding recipes that are easy will increase our likelihood to make them a menu staple; once you are comfortable with a recipe, it makes it easier to swap out different ingredients like veggies or proteins
Some nutrition tips to remember:
– Keep it simple – don’t try to do too much at once, find 1-2 healthy recipes you love, and use them frequently until you’ve built up a good habit and routine
– Consistency – consistency is key to building habits, focus on something you want to work on and do it consistently to make it stick!
– Focus on simple recipes – simple recipes are easier to prepare, and when feeding a family, can be easily adjusted to each family member’s tastes
– Every person has a different body – there is no one size fits all when it comes to diet and nutrition; listen to what your body needs; what works for one person may not work for your digestion or nutritional needs; when we look at health and fitness influencers, we sometimes don’t realize that they are getting paid to look a certain way, and that it isn’t feasible for the rest of us
– Cut yourself some slack – do what YOU can do, and don’t get too hung up on what you see other people doing
– Carbs are important – carbs often get a bad rap and many people feel like they can cut out this food group completely; carbs come from grains, but also from fruits and vegetables; they are the body’s main source of energy and a source of fiber in our diets
– Fad diets often are a short-term fix and not healthy – they don’t offer long-term success in building sustainable habits and typically don’t fit in normal lifestyles
Thank you Wellory team for sharing these important reminders and tips! Keeping focused on these points will help anyone start their wellness journey off on the right foot this year! To learn more about the Movemeant Foundation, go to https://movemeantfoundation.org/. The Movemeant Foundation is aimed at empowering girls and women to use physical movement as a tool to build confidence and self-worth.
You can watch the Stronger for Good event throughout the month of January here: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL3mpyoeuunJahk0Jpd_FPYcrSsL4liCeX