This month is National Wellness Month, which is a reminder of the importance of physical, social-emotional and spiritual health. At SmithLife Homecare, we are focusing on self-care, managing stress and promoting healthy routines for our clients and ourselves. We encourage you to incorporate wholesome habits in your life all month long and see how much better you feel!
Research has shown self-care helps manage stress and promotes happiness. Whether you challenge yourself to a new yoga pose or take 10 minutes to meditate, these make a small change and impact your health in positive ways.
Here are five ways to incorporate wellness into your everyday lifestyle:
1. Drink More Water
Did you know that 60% of the body is made up of water? No wonder it is so important to drink enough water! On average, an adult male needs about 3 liters of water per day, while an adult female needs about 2.2 liters of water per day.
According to the CDC, drinking a sufficient amount of water keeps your temperature under control, lubricates and cushions joints, protects sensitive tissues in the body such as your spinal cord, and rids the body of waste.
In order to increase your water intake, consider carrying a water bottle around with you. Now that it’s summer, try adding lemon, lime, fruits, mint or basil to your water for extra flavor and electrolytes. Our caregivers can ensure that your loved one remembers to drink enough water throughout the day.
2. Good Nutrition-Eat the Rainbow
Everyone knows that eating fruits and vegetables is an important part of a balanced diet, but did you know that each color provides different nutrients? So eat your greens, but also eat your oranges, blues and reds!
Red: Protects against prostate cancer and heart and lung disease
Orange and Yellow: Supports intracellular communication
Green: Contains chemicals that block cancer
Blue and Purple: Contain antioxidants that prevent cellular aging prevent blood clots
White and Brown: Contains anti-tumor properties and antioxidants
Some of the best ways to sneak some extra veggies into your diet is by making a smoothie (try adding some spinach!), throwing some veggies into your soup, freezing fruit into popsicles or to use as toppings, and by crunching on some veggies for snack. Whether it is a run to the grocery store, preparing a snack or reminding your loved one to eat some veggies, our caregivers can provide support to your aging loved one living independently. SmithLife Homecare can also introduce clients to partners that specialize in providing nutritious meals for adults living independently.
3. Get More ZZZ’s
Sleep is so important for your physical and mental health! Consistent sleep deprivation can increase your risk for chronic health problems, such as obesity. It can reduce your cognitive functioning, ability to control emotions and solve problems and the body’s ability to maintain a healthy hormone balance.
In order to get more sleep, try going to sleep and waking up at the same time each day. This habit will keep your body’s rhythm in check! Additionally, consider creating a nighttime routine that incorporates relaxing activities, such as taking a bath, reading or lighting a candle. Our in-home caregivers can assist with these tasks and remind aging adults of each step in their routine. Developing consistency in your nighttime routine will ensure better, deeper sleep.
4. Get Moving
Getting some exercise each day is one of the best things you can do for your health. Not only does it help to maintain a healthy weight and benefit coordination, muscle strength and flexibility, but it can improve your mental health. When you exercise, your body releases mood boosting endorphins.
To get more exercise, consider going for a morning or evening walk each day. Challenge a friend or family member to move more with you, and use a fitness tracker or just plain old pen and paper! Swimming, aerobics and yoga are also great ways to get your body moving and your heart rate up. There are many videos and classes online of varying length that you can try during this time of social distancing. Our in home caregivers can help aging adults find exercise videos online that best match their abilities. They can also ensure that exercise is done safely or connect clients with partners that host exercise classes.
It is never too late to learn to meditate! Meditation calms the mind and reduces stress and anxiety. Even just a few minutes each day can have lasting effects on your mental health. Meditation brings greater awareness and perspective to the ideas that you ponder each day. By observing them without judgement, you are better able to understand them.
Meditation is easy to incorporate into your everyday life if you devote 5-10 minutes (or more!) to practice. Consider purchasing a book about meditation to get started. Meditation comes in many forms, and you can explore to figure out which is best for you. Some people enjoy meditation through drawing, while others enjoy reading a passage and reflecting. Perhaps one of the most common ways to meditate is by sitting and focusing on the way the body feels in that moment. There are apps, sound recordings and print outs that can be utilized as a resource for your meditation practice, and SmithLife Homecare caregivers can help aging adults find them.
Introducing healthy habits into your lifestyle can be fun! Find ones that make you feel happy and energized. If you or your loved one needs assistance in doing any of these healthy activities at home, the caregivers with SmithLife Homecare are ready to help!