With the start of a new year, for most, it is a new beginning, an opportunity for a fresh start. It causes one to take time and contemplate the year that just passed and what we did or did not accomplish in those 365 days.
That being said, 2020 was quite a different year for all of us. Most of us have never experienced a pandemic of this magnitude. We saw the loss of lives, the chronic illness, the economic struggle, social unrest, and more.
If we did not fulfill the goals we set for 2020, that is totally understandable. We were in lock-down for months, living with the angst of not knowing how to avoid getting the virus. There was, and still is, uncertainty if we will ever return to "normal".
Here are 5 health goals I have set for myself and why I chose them.
# 1: Eat More Raw Foods!
In 2020 when Covid-19 first came onto our radar, I realized that eating healthy foods would go a long way in boosting my immune system. Trust me, I didn't always eat healthy due to my constantly craving comfort food. In fact, I put on about 10 pounds that I couldn't afford to pack on. Seeing that we are not out of the woods yet, so to speak, I have turned my attention to better eating. I plan to add more raw foods to my daily diet.
Supporters of raw food diets believe that when you cook food it destroys the natural enzymes reduces both the nutrient content and energy that is in raw or living foods.
Food is considered raw if it has never been heated over 104- 118 F. Additionally it should not be treated with pesticides or refined, pasteurized, or processed in any way. Eating raw allows for juicing, blending, dehydrating, soaking, and sprouting. The raw food diet is usually plant-based and is mostly made up of seeds, sprouts, nuts, fruits, and vegetables. Some consume raw eggs and dairy and even raw fish and meat, but not me, I eat plant-based raw foods. I like to grow and eat sprouts as they are completely raw and "alive" or full of enzymes as you eat them.
Some benefits that can occur are an increase in energy, weight loss, and overall improved health. I am not a doctor so I can't say this with scientific certainty but have personally experienced it myself.
While I plan to still eat some cooked food and dairy, I will be eating more raw foods each day.
# 2: Drink way more water, agua, eau, wasser, vand, jal, voda, vand, seui, H2O!
Water is essential to life! I think we all know that, we all believe that, yet often we forget to drink enough water to keep us healthy and happy. In recent years I have really strived to increase my daily intake of water but often fall off the water bandwagon. Setting this healthy goal of drinking more water is one that I really want to be as a mainstay of my life.
Here are a few points I have learned about why it is so important to drink plenty and I mean plenty of water.
Did you know that we are 60% water and our blood is 90% water, and about 70% of the surface of the earth is cover by water.? Really makes you realize why we need to drink water to retain our water levels. Water is at the very core of our lives.
Regulates body temperature
Boosts skin & beauty
Essential for kidneys and other bodily functions
Lubricates the joints
Cushions the brain, spinal cord & other tissues
Flushes waste away
Helps maximize physical performance
Can aid in weight loss
Helps maintain the balance of body fluids
# 3: Walk at least a minimum of 5 days a week!
Walking is a no-brainer way to get healthy. Just about everyone can walk and it's free and easy to do. When I look back and I was at a very healthful weight, I realized that I walked about 25-30 miles a week. I actually loved to walk every day and looked forward to it. Unfortunately, now that I need it the most, I have fallen out of the habit. With the mostly stay-at-home Covid situation, I find that I have gotten a bit physically lazy. Recently, I have stepped it up a bit and on that note, decided to add the goal of walking 5 days a week.
Here are just a few reasons that walking is so good for you!
Improves your mood
Helps maintain a healthy weight
Improves balance and coordination
Helps to improve your digestion
Can help you to be more creative
Helps to boost your immunity
Can alleviate joint pain
Help you to sleep better
# 4: Read & Meditate!
Don't get me wrong, I love all things online. With that being said, the concern I have for myself is that I rarely pick up a book, an actual hard-copy book anymore. There's something so much more satisfying about holding a book, turning the pages, smelling it, bookmarking it, and setting it down. Additionally, when reading a book, I find it easier to meditate about what I have just read. When reading anything online, my mind will wander as I research this and that, and often forget what I was originally researching. Another one of my good for my health goals is to occasionally get off of my device, pick up a book, not only read it but actually meditate about what I just read.
When you read your brain is fully alive and engaged. As you read, you are producing your own sounds, feelings, and images in your mind. This action offers one the opportunity to be mindful. As you are physically reading the book as well as feeling the book, this creates mindfulness. You can sit and contemplate what you just read and how it has meaning in your life, "how can I benefit from what I just read", "can I apply this in my life", "what further research can I do on this subject". This is mindfulness and focused attention. Focused attention meditation is like weight lifting for your attention span, it helps to increase the strength and endurance of your attention.
# 5: Encourage Others!
Have you ever been down and someone in your life says or does something encouraging? Do you remember how wonderful that made you feel and how it instantly lifted your spirits? I want to do that for others. It's easy to do if you just think about who might need some encouragement. There is a quote from the scriptures that says, "Keep encouraging one another up, just as you are in fact doing." Here a few benefits of encouraging others.
It will in turn encourage you
Helps you to see others differently
Encouraging words can be healing
Helps to build self-esteem
Can restore self-confidence
Our words and be powerful
Encouraging others motivates us
Looks like we are officially in a new year, let's see where it goes! Good health to everyone. Until next time,