New year’s resolutions are typically thought of as behaviors, habits, foods or other things to remove from your diet or lifestyle to achieve health. While sometimes working to reduce certain habits and behaviors can be helpful, there’s another side to the coin.
What if you thought about habits, behaviors and foods you can be adding to your new year routine?
This mental shift brings a more positive attitude and approach to your wellness. Rather than imposing a black and white mentality or feeling shameful and guilty if you can’t stick to your “no sugar” rule, you can bring curiosity and excitement to the development of new habits. In doing so, you may also displace some damaging behaviors and habits in the process.
Here are six trending habits and health behaviors that can enhance your health and wellbeing this year.
1. Consider Probiotics
Probiotics refer to the live bacteria found in foods and drinks that can help promote “good” bacteria in and throughout your body. Having a “healthy” balance of good bacteria may contribute to our mood and the nutrients we absorb from food, among other benefits.
Yogurt, kefir and fermented products like sauerkraut, kimchi, tempeh and miso paste have a diverse probiotic profile and offer other nutrition benefits as well.
Some Vital Proteins products also contain probiotics, including our Collagen Beauty Greens and Beauty Collagen™ collections.
2. Try Meditation
There is a lot of research touting the health and wellness benefits of meditation.
Meditation can help combat stress by focusing on the present moment. Meditation has also been linked to decreased blood pressure and improved heart health, improved mood, clarity and productivity.
Beginning meditation doesn’t have to mean sitting in silence for 30 minutes. Even starting with just a minute or two a day can have its benefits. There are several free apps to help you start, such as Insight Timer, The Breathing App, Calm and Headspace.
3. Prioritize Sleep
Sleep may be one thing you think you can skimp on when life gets busy, but sleep plays a significant role on health and wellness. Skimping on sleep is one of the worst things you can do. Insufficient sleep affects our energy levels, exercise motivation, concentration and even appetite regulation. Yes, not sleeping enough can impact your food choices!
Even a night or two of poor sleep can elevate our hunger hormone, ghrelin, while reducing leptin, a hormone that suppresses appetite. Therefore, you may feel hungrier and gravitate towards palatable foods with higher sugar and fat content when you are sleep deprived.
Work to establish a healthy pre-sleep routine, limit screen time and blue lights before bed, and aim for 7-9 hours of shuteye each night. Looking for a more restful night's sleep?** Reach for our Blueberry Moon Milk Collagen Latte™ or Sleep Collagen Shotbefore bed.
4. Try a New Workout Class
Exercise provides several benefits and it’s even more impactful if it’s something you enjoy and can do consistently. If you’re someone who doesn’t enjoy exercise, chances are you haven’t tried the right one yet.
If you hate CrossFit, don’t force yourself to do it. There are so many new and fun exercise classes available, like barre, kickboxing, cycling, yoga, Zumba or high-intensity interval classes. Many gyms and fitness studios will offer a free first class, so you can see if it’s something you enjoy before investing.
Additionally, there are several programs and even free exercise classes available online, which you can use from the comfort of your own home.
5. Add More Plant-Based Foods to Your Diet
Fruits, vegetables and legumes are the main sources of fiber in our diet. Fiber is a nutrient that many Americans don’t get enough of that helps with satiety and digestion. Furthermore, plant foods are also wonderful sources of antioxidants and phytonutrients, natural chemicals that can offer anti-inflammatory properties.
Plant foods don’t need to displace animal foods completely, but they can provide a nice complement.
6. Drink More Water
The majority of us don’t drink enough water throughout the day. Water is an essential nutrient, meaning we have to get it from our diets. It helps deliver nutrients to cells, impacts our mood and energy levels, and aids in physical performance. Remember that other beverages can contribute to your water intake, as well as foods like fruits and vegetables.
Don’t like the taste of plain water? Try infusing flavors like pineapple, mint or cucumber. Or better yet: Stock up on Vital Proteins Collagen Water™, which boasts 10g of collagen and 3g of sugar or less per serving.
Tell us: What are you adding to your lifestyle in 2020?