From big changes that happen all at once to the subtle ones that slowly build on one another, new habits get adopted in all different shapes, sizes and styles.
When you make it a habit, you don’t have to think about it anymore, It’s like compound interest; you get the magic of time in your favour.
Anyone of any age, size or gender can begin working on these back-to-basics behaviours. And focusing on adding one or two small, daily positive habits to your routine removes the intimidation of otherwise lofty New Year’s goals. If you miss a day, start fresh the next day. Everyone falls off sometimes. What matters most is jumping back on.
Here are Seven ideas for new year’s resolutions that don’t involve dieting:
1. Eat more whole foods
Whole foods, including vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, whole grains, and fish, contain a plethora of nutrients that your body needs to function at an optimal level.
One of the easiest and most sustainable ways to improve overall health is to eat more whole foods. Research shows that following a whole-foods-based diet may significantly reduce heart disease risk factors, body weight, and blood sugar levels, as well as decrease your risk of certain diseases, such as type 2 diabetes
What’s more, adding more whole foods to your diet can be done slowly and consistently.
For example, if you’re not used to eating vegetables, start by adding one serving of your favourite veggie to your diet every day.
2. Sit less and move more
Whether it’s due to having a sedentary job or simply being inactive, many people sit more than they should. Sitting too much can have negative effects on health. It may be linked to an increased risk of overall mortality.
Make a resolution to sit less is an easy and attainable resolution that can be tailored to fit your lifestyle.
For example, if you have a desk job that requires long periods of sitting, make a resolution to go for a 15-minute walk at lunch or to get up and walk for 5 minutes every hour.
Here are a few ideas to get more activity into your daily life:
• Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
• Stretch for 10 minutes after every hour that you work.
• Park farther away from buildings to increase your walking distance.
• Bike to work.
3. Eat and drink less sugar
Cutting back on sweetened beverages is a smart idea considering that sugary drinks are linked to an increased risk of obesity, fatty liver, heart disease, insulin resistance, and cavities in both children and adults
Though quitting sweetened beverages cold turkey is always an option, gradually minimizing your intake may help you kick your sugary drink habit for good.
The easiest place to start? Drinks. Switch that soda or sugary drink to water instead.
Staying hydrated maintains your energy and prevents headaches and other dehydration effects. Choosing water over soft drinks, alcohol and other calorie-dense beverages. If you drink when you’re thirsty and you drink water preferentially, you’re good. It’s about limiting drinks you love the most thoughtfully.
4. Get more, quality sleep
Sleep is an essential part of overall health, and sleep deprivation can lead to serious consequences Like it affects your immune system, hormones, appetite, weight, thinking, energy, concentration, temper, mood … even life expectancy.
People who have impaired sleep or insomnia symptoms are significantly more likely to develop clinical depression. If you are coping with depression and impaired sleep, you are much more likely to have thoughts of suicide. Several studies have shown how just treating sleep problems in those with depression can improve the depression symptoms too, she said.
Lack of sleep may increase your risk of weight gain, heart disease, and depression. There are many reasons why people don’t get enough sleep, so it’s important to focus on your schedule and lifestyle to determine the best ways to improve sleep quantity and quality.
For example: Decreasing screen time before bed, reducing light pollution in your bedroom, cutting back on caffeine, and getting to bed at a reasonable hour are some simple ways to improve sleep hygiene.
5. Find a physical activity that you enjoy
Physical activity is almost magical in its ability to improve quality of life
Every New Year, people purchase expensive memberships to gyms, workout studios, and online fitness programs in hopes of shedding excess body fat in the year to come. Though most people start strong, the majority don’t make their new routine into a lasting habit.
Still, you can increase the chances of making your fitness resolutions stick. To get started, choose an activity based on enjoyment and whether it fits into your schedule.
It doesn’t need to be fancy, long or boring.
Ten-minute blocks of playing with your kids, dancing or even taking the stairs make a difference. Then, set an attainable goal, such as planning to walk a few specific days per week instead of aiming for every day.
Making a more realistic goal can enhance the chances of making your new routine last, especially if you’re new to working out.
For example, taking a half-hour walk, jog, or bike ride before work, or swimming at a gym that’s on your way home, are simple and sustainable exercise resolutions.
6. Cook more meals at home
Research shows that people who cook more meals at home have better diet quality and less body fat than people who eat more meals on the go.
A study in 11,396 adults found that those who ate 5 or more home-cooked meals per week were 28% less likely to be overweight, compared with those who ate fewer than 3 home-cooked meals per week.
Start by making one meal a day, then increase the frequency over time until you’re making the majority of your meals and snacks at home.
Try our easy guilt-free healthy recipes.
7.Rethink dieting, create a sustainable & nourishing diet
You may be resolving to eat healthier or lose weight year after year because you’re prioritizing short-term changes over long-term health benefits.
Instead of making a plan to follow yet another restrictive fad diet, this New Year, make a resolution to break the dieting cycle and create a sustainable, nourishing eating pattern that works for you.
Chronic dieting is harmful to both physical and mental health. Plus, most people who lose weight through restrictive dieting regain up to two-thirds of the weight lost within 1 year.
Dieting can also make it harder to lose weight in the future.
Rather than setting a New Year’s resolution to lose weight by using restrictive measures, such as a fad diet, try a healthier, more sustainable method of weight loss by focusing on increasing physical activity and eating healthier foods.
A healthy, long-term diet should not only be nutritious but also adaptable, meaning you can follow it for life — no matter the circumstances.
A sustainable eating pattern can be maintained on vacation, during holidays, and at parties, because it’s unrestrictive and suited to your lifestyle.
Check out the MetabolismResetdiet to get started.
There’s no one right way. What works for you might not work for me !
The bottom line is I want people to know about making habit changes
Though most New Year’s resolutions are only kept for a short period, the healthy resolutions listed above are sustainable ways to improve your physical and emotional health that can be followed for life.
Creating a healthier relationship with food and taking better care of your body and mind can drastically improve your health in various ways.
By Priyanshi Bhatnagar