(WBNG) — 2023 has begun and many are promising to make changes in the new year. Quite often many of these goals have to do with being healthier.
When it comes to New Year’s Resolutions, Health Coach for Lourdes, Matthew Moore, said they are a great way to take that first step.
“I think it’s a great idea,” said Moore. “If you can find any excuse to look a little closer at who you are and where you want to be in life use that.”
Moore said before you start your journey it’s important to ask yourself why. For many it’s about improving their quality of life.
“That can mean different things to different people whether it be taking less medications, whether it be just moving around a little bit easier, playing with their kids a little bit more, or having more fun day to day,” said Moore. “I think really investigating why you want to be healthier is the most important part.”
Doctor Nasir Hussain, who specializes in preventive cardiology, said to have a heart healthy new year, the most important tools are diet and exercise.
“Diet is the leading cause of death,” said Dr. Hussain. “To many people this may be a shocker, but the prevalence of the risk factors, 1 in 3 or 4 is diabetic, 1 in 3 or 4 is obese.”
With so many different diets to choose from, Dr. Hussain said when it comes to heart health, the Mediterranean diet, with lots of fruits, vegetables, and white meat like fish is the best option.
“Mortality is reduced with Mediterranean diet, Alzheimer’s is reduced with Mediterranean diet, Parkinson’s disease is reduced with Mediterranean diet, risk of cancer related mortality is reduced, arthritis is reduced,” said Dr. Hussain. “It’s an anti-inflammatory diet and whatever you can think of the Mediterranean diet has consistently shown to be good.”
The next piece of the puzzle is exercise. Personal Training Manager at the Lourdes Health and Fitness Center, Rachel Reed, said the key is making it something you enjoy.
“Whether that’s finding a friend in the gym, finding a group exercise class that you can talk with the instructor, and they hold you accountable each week, signing up or working with one of our trainers here, one of those kinds of things is key to keeping you coming back,” said Reed.
She said everyone’s journey will be different and there are people available to help you learn what is best for you and your goals.
“I think the main thing to avoid that burn out is to start a little slow, add to that progress so that you know muscle soreness, being tired, maybe not having that motivation could seem to build up on some people if you go all or nothing,” said Reed. “Just keep in mind that you can take a day off and still get back into it and still reach your goals.”
Health Coach Moore said throughout the whole process, it’s important to remember that you are human.
“A lot of times we think we have this broken relationship with food, this broken relationship with exercise, with ourselves, why am I like this. It can be very self-afflicting,” said Moore. “When we really investigate it and look at the physiology of what’s going on, you’re not broken, there is nothing wrong with the way you interact with those things, that’s human instincts.”
In the end, just take it one day at a time.
“If you’ve got the support, you’ve got the professionals that have your back all it takes is a couple little tweaks to your routine,” said Moore. “You can start seeing progress pretty quickly and that’s of course very encouraging.”
For more tips on living a heart healthy new year click here.
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