Another new year, another opportunity for a new year resolution. You know, one that probably revolves around you transforming your body and becoming super fit but actually lasts a grand total of 4 days before you succumb to the first burger you lay your eyes on.
Well, given the exhausting year that we had, we don’t blame you. 2021 needs to be slightly easy going – one where we have the opportunity to do more and be better versions of ourselves, all while having a bit of fun.
So no, we’re not going to give you a secret 31-day plan that will magically leave you shredded. Instead, this year, start healthy living by making small, noticeable changes in your life that will contribute immensely to your health for years to come.
In short, here are some tips for making 2021 a healthier year!
Cut down on sugar
When it comes to healthy life tips, there’s nothing better than cutting down sugar. And simply put, sugar is really, really bad for your body. So cutting down includes no refined sugar, fewer desserts, and definitely no carbonated sweetened beverages.
Want an alternative? Try Daily Greens. It’s just as tasty (if not tastier!), and each effervescent tab contains the nutrients and vitamins of 39 farm-fresh veggies too!
Put those quarantine cooking skills to good use
If like us you’ve spent half of quarantine binge watching Masterchef videos, now’s the best time to put it to good use.
Cooking allows you to choose your ingredients, and control the amount of calories you consume every day. It’s a great life skill to have, and also, compared to ordering out, it’s much lighter on the wallet too!
Eat more whole foods
We cannot emphasise this enough. ‘Dieting’ doesn’t just mean skipping meals – it means eating foods that are not riddled with fat and empty calories.
So how to become healthy? With foods that actually add value to your system and give you enough energy and nutrients to stay fit and power through the day.
This includes more vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, and also whole grains – and if you’re feeling adventurous, pick your favourites from each, choose a protein, and make a fun salad bowl!
Find an activity that you actually enjoy
Ah, exercise – that thing you need to do to keep the weight off but you also don’t enjoy.
Except, who said that you can’t, or shouldn’t? Hate going to the gym? Try yoga. Not a fan of that either? Pick up a sport. Or indulge in some MMA. Or swim. Or dance. Or just run!
The point is, once you try everything, there will be something that you actually enjoy. And once you do, staying fit won’t seem like such a chore anymore.
And lastly, get adequate quality sleep
Exercise is important, but sleeping 7-8 hours every night is quite important too. Sleep deprivation can have devastating short term and long term consequences on your body.
So cut back on those cuppas, make sure all lights are out, and make a whole night’s sleep a healthy habit.
Remember – the idea is to not just sleep, but to improve the quality of your sleep!
- Höchli B, Brügger A, Messner C. Making New Year's Resolutions that Stick: Exploring how Superordinate and Subordinate Goals Motivate Goal Pursuit. Appl Psychol Health Well Being. 2020 Mar;12(1):30-52. doi: 10.1111/aphw.12172. Epub 2019 Jun 24. PMID: 31232517.(https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31232517/)
- Are All Types Of Sugar Bad For Us?, J Mcmahon, 2014, (https://www.semanticscholar.org/paper/Are-all-types-of-sugar-bad-for-us-Mcmahon/0325549d988572cd80255d43c31ef74e96972ac1)
- Liu RH. Health-promoting components of fruits and vegetables in the diet. Adv Nutr. 2013 May 1;4(3):384S-92S. doi: 10.3945/an.112.003517. PMID: 23674808; PMCID: PMC3650511. (https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23674808/)
- Killgore WD. Effects of sleep deprivation on cognition. Prog Brain Res. 2010;185:105-29. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-444-53702-7.00007-5. PMID: 21075236, (https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21075236/)