Dec 20, 2015

3 Healthy Habits To Start Right Now

The holidays aren't always the healthiest time of the year for many of us and that's totally fine. There's no need to be a Grinch and forgo all the special holiday treats that only come once a year.

That said, there is no reason to make things harder on ourselves for when January resolution fever rolls around by completely ignoring the importance of healthy living during the holidays. Completely ignoring our physical well-being for an entire holiday season leads to feeling pretty awful when all the sleepless nights of holiday parties and running on sugar and fumes are over.

It's all about the balance!

Here are three simple, healthy habits that you don't need to wait for the new year to adopt. Get in the habit now and you'll start the new year feeling much better than otherwise - maybe even good enough that you can focus on career or personal resolutions instead of health ones!

1. Drink enough water.

Staying hydrated is so important! Especially in winter, when it's cold and the heating is on high, it's important to be careful to drink enough. The heating dries us out and the cold weather keeps us from feeling as thirsty as we do in the hot weather.

But when we don't drink enough, we get headaches, dry skin, dry hair, and a host of other problems. So drink up!

Alcohol, coffee, and other caffeinated beverages don't count - they're dehydrating, so you actually need to drink more!

2. Include protein in your breakfast.

We've all heard that eating breakfast is important and many of us do eat breakfast. It's delicious, it gets us going for the day, and I, for one, can't imagine taking on a whole new day with a growling stomach and no energy!

But eating breakfast isn't enough. What we eat for breakfast matters, too! Breakfasts full of just simple carbs, whether they come in the form of a sugar breakfast pastry or some vitamin-packed fruit, are unlikely to keep you satisfied and firing on full engines all the way to lunchtime. You need a balanced breakfast that includes protein for that!

Cereal has always been one of my breakfast food favorites, like it is for many of us. Luckily, you don't have to opt for boiled eggs over cereal to have a healthy breakfast.

Beans are a great plantbased protein, with fiber and protein and all sorts of other beneficial nutrients. Having beans for breakfast would be a very healthy way to start the day, so I was excited to find out about Love Grown Foods' (an old favorite) new Power O's!

The first ingredient is a mix of heart-healthy, protein-rich beans! Since the beans are paired with whole grain brown rice, this cereal provides a complete source of plant-based protein in a practical, breakfast-friendly form.

Better yet, it comes in three delicious varieties (honey, strawberry, and chocolate) and you can't tell that it's made out of beans. It tastes just like a sweet breakfast cereal, but it will keep you well fueled for much longer.

I love all three varieties and highly recommend enjoying them as pictured on the box covers, with a bit of fruit and your milk of choice. It's both delicious and healthy, which is always the best combination

And there's a chocolate variety. Completely unsurprisingly, that one is my favorite. Yum!

3. Be grateful. 

This may seem like an odd inclusion on a list of healthy habits, but I think that it's incredibly important! The holiday season is such a wonderful time to be grateful for all the wonderful people and wonderful blessings in our lives.

When we approach our days with grateful hearts, we enjoy ourselves more, experience less stress, and don't freak out about the little things. We smile more, laugh more, love more, and thus experience improved well-being. It may be an improvement that starts in the mind, but the benefits spread to the body!

So drink more, have a more nutritious breakfast, and be grateful. Happy (healthy) holidays!

What are your favorite healthy habits?

What are your favorite ways to include protein in your breakfast?

What are you grateful for right now?

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