Do these 9 things.
1. Keep Blood Pressure Normal
2. Maintain Normal weight
3. Normal Cholesterol
4. Minimal Alcohol
5. Avoid Diabetes
6. Good nutrition
7. Reduce stress
8. Don’t smoke
It’s about stacking odds
A meal that’s heavy in sugar and starch is no way to start your day – especially if you’re following the ketogenic diet.
These recipes from functional medicine specialist Mark Hyman, MD, are a great way for anyone — keto or not — to bring real, whole, fresh foods (including non-starchy vegetables) to your plate first thing in the morning.
The jicama serves as a lighter alternative to traditional potato, while turkey bacon is a stand-in for pork.
This versatile, protein-packed meal is easy on your digestive system and always a hit with the kids, too.
A creamy, low-carb smoothie is a great way to start your day and get into fat-burning mode. And ginger is great for digestions.
What’s the easiest way to upgrade a plate of greens? Put an egg on top! This tasty and comforting dish is good for breakfast – or lunch or dinner.
For those who don’t want coffee, this latte is a great morning drink that provides healthy fat without caffeine.
With a few veggies and precooked sausage, you can have this satisfying, savory frittata on the table in under 45 minutes.
If you’re planning to start an exercise program and wondering where to begin, start with your core first, says physical therapist Brittany Smith, DPT. People often think of the core muscles as being the abdominal muscles, but the core includes the muscles in the abdomen, back and hips, all working together as a group.
“The core muscles provide stability for the entire body as it moves,” says Smith. “These muscles are activated when you stand up, turn, bend, reach, twist, stoop and move in most other ways. Everything starts with your core.”
Getting started with your core
To get your core muscles in shape, you need to exercise.
“Our bodies were made to move, so any physical activity is really important,” says Smith.
She recommends these specific core-strengthening exercises below.
The first one engages the deep muscles in the abdomen, called the transverse abdominis. “These muscles help hold us in a better position to stabilize our core, thereby stabilizing our arms and legs,” says Smith.
“The more you work on these muscles, the more it will become second nature to hold these muscles tight when you’re lifting grocery bags, doing yard work or any other kind of physical activity,” says Smith. This will help support your body.
Other muscles that tend to be weak are the gluteus maximus in the buttocks, and the gluteus medius and gluteus minimus on the side of the hip. The bridge and clamshell exercises can help strengthen these muscles.
Smith emphasizes that getting the proper position of these exercises correct is more important than the number of repetitions you do. “It’s better to take your time, maybe do fewer reps, but with better quality,” she says. For that reason, it can be helpful to have the guidance of a physical therapist to get started.
Move on from the core
Core exercises are the starting point of overall fitness because you need to hold those muscles engaged while you strengthen other muscles, such as the biceps in the arms or the quadriceps in the legs.
Smith suggests setting short-term goals (for about a month) and then more long-term goals. Once you have achieved short-term goals, such as getting around more easily, add other types of weight-training or resistance exercises to build muscle elsewhere.
With any exercise you do, always listen to your body, warns Smith. If you have pain other than muscle burn, take it easy. Reduce the number of repetitions, the weight or the duration of the exercises. Then build up gradually. “You don’t have to be in pain to make gains,” she says.
Beginner exercises for core strength
For each of the following, work up to one to two sets of 10 to 15 repetitions once a day.
Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Contract your abdominal muscles, and press the arch of your back down toward the floor, pulling your belly button toward your spine. Hold for 5 to 10 seconds. Make sure your lower back stays flat on the floor. Relax and repeat.
Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor with your arms at your sides. Squeeze your abdominal and buttocks muscles, push your heels into the floor and slowly lift your buttocks and hips off the floor. Keep your back straight. Hold for 5 to 10 seconds.
Lie on your side with knees bent in line with your hips and back, draw up the top knee while keeping contact of your feet together as shown. Don’t let your pelvis roll back during the lifting movement. Hold for 5 seconds.
1. “I wish I had known how much I was self-destructing with alcohol.”
All the embarrassing situations, the things you’ve said that you shouldn’t—after you stop drinking, you realize just how destructive the alcohol was. “It’s so easy and convenient to delay your problems with alcohol. But it sure doesn’t solve them,” says one OYNB veteran.
2. “I wish I’d known alcohol was causing so many of my chronic health issues.”
From reflux to IBS, acne to vitamin deficiency—the list goes on. Once people quit the booze, they see just how many chronic health issues disappear. The problem started inside you, and the solution might be there, too.
3. “I wish I had known how much more self-respect I would have after I quit.”
So many of us drink because we lack the confidence to be vulnerable without “liquid courage.” But consistently losing control doesn’t cultivate self-esteem. Over time, it erodes it. Learning how to handle your life, and eventually realizing that you can conquer any challenge—without any numbing agents—is the best thing you can do for your long-term self-acceptance and personal growth.
4. “I wish I’d known how much younger I’d feel.”
“I’ve got an extra spring in my step that people my age just don’t have. People think I’m 10 or 15 years younger than I actually am. My eyes are gleaming again; my skin is vibrant. There’s a sparkle in my life that has been missing since I was young and free. I thought the closest I would get to feeling that sparkle was getting drunk. Turns out, the alcohol is exactly what was keeping me from it.”
5. “I wish I’d recognized how significantly it would improve my relationships.”
“My wife and I were on the brink of divorce, and now we’re more in love than we’ve ever been. Friendships rooted in shared vices have fallen away, and authentic, loving relationships have risen up in their place.” When you remove the veneer of alcohol, meaningful relationships will flourish.
6. “I wish I’d known that quitting booze was the gateway to overhauling my life.”
The impact of alcohol isn’t limited to the changes you experience while you’re drunk or while you’re hungover. It negatively affects your life in a thousand other ways. It exacerbates anxiety, anger, depression. It encourages bad habits like eating junk food and skipping workouts. When you ditch the booze, your life will experience a total metamorphosis.
7. “I wish I’d known it was limiting my ability to be a good parent.”
This is a bit of a gut-wrencher. But almost without exception, parents who have gone off the booze say they are better parents now than they ever could’ve been while drinking. When it comes to parenting, the only argument that booze is a good thing is the one that says a stressed parent is a better parent. But we all know there are a million healthier coping mechanisms for anxiety and tension than drinking. And your kid, more than anyone else in the world, deserves a fully present, engaged parent. From rushed bedtime stories to short-tempered outbursts, a drinking problem can rob you of the ability to be the kind of parent you want to be.
8. “I wish I’d known it was robbing me of my memories.”
So many events missed, so many moments gone. From weddings to birthday parties, vacations to intimate conversations, a booze-addled brain can never be counted upon to hold on to what’s important. Perhaps the scariest memory failure the frequent drinker experiences is the inability to answer the question, “How did I get home last night?”
9. “I wish I’d realized how much money it was costing me.”
You’re already paying rent, spending money on vacations, putting food on the table, etc. You probably don’t realize how much money you waste every month on liquor—especially if you socialize in a metropolis like London or New York. A few nights of heavy drinking a week can easily add up to a thousand-dollar-a-month habit. Think about all the things you’d rather spend that money on than drinking your life away.
10. “I wish I’d known how much liquor was holding me back.”
We forget our hobbies, deprioritize our families, put our business ideas on the back burner. Under the veil of alcohol, nothing seems all that important. It’s only when you clear away the film of booze that you can feel the true importance of those things you set aside. And often, by then it’s too late.
11. “I wish I’d known how much peace it would bring me.”
“Changing my mindset and cutting out booze helped me find a level of peace I don’t think I’ve ever had in my adult life. I just can’t believe how different I feel. It’s like a fog has been lifted. A cloud that had been following me around for years is finally gone.” We all know that alcohol is a depressant, but we often choose not to recognize how it may be controlling us. You have to remove that variable from the equation in order to recognize how it changes the outcome.
12. “I wish I’d done it sooner.”
Looking back on the years of misguided drinking—time spent trying to appease someone else or hide hurtful or shameful feelings—the newly sober are confronted with a profound sense of regret that they wasted as much time as they did. Once you see how good life can be sans alcohol, it’s hard to perceive time you spent drinking as time well-spent.
Thousands of people are happier, healthier, fitter, more productive, more well-rested, achieving their dreams, starting their businesses, running those marathons, feeling happy, loving their partners, spending time with their kids, being present, and absolutely loving their lives.
So what are you waiting for? You can learn more about the alcohol-free challenge here.