Most Americans know that a healthy diet and exercise are the ideal combination for weight loss and lowers risk of chronic diseases. Knowledge without action is futile – and America is encountering a major health crisis as a result of our complacency. According to a recent study by the Centers of Disease Control (CDC), only one in seven American adults gets regular physical activity and consumes five servings of fruits and vegetables every day. Rates of obesity, diabetes, heart disease and other health problems are at an all-time high because so few of us incorporate both a healthy diet AND exercise into our lifestyles.
So why do so few take the action to live a lifestyle that would allow them to live in full VITALITY?
Perhaps it’s because they see it as an overwhelming task to change their lifestyle overnight. What is the solution to the overwhelm? Start with small changes to your diet and physical activity, and increase them gradually.
You will get the best results by combining a healthy weight loss diet plan with regular, moderate exercise that includes cardio and strength training. You don’t have to become a total health nut or live on salads and Jello. In fact, a very low calorie diet can do more harm than good, depleting your muscle and leaving your metabolism worse off than before. Instead, choose a nutrient and protein dense, yet lower calorie, fat, sugar and sodium diet program that fits your lifestyle. Make those healthy changes to your diet, and incorporate exercise into your week. Be careful and start slow – no need to be an athlete; walking, biking or gym cardio machines are fine, combined with muscle strengthening activities a couple of days a week. Start slowly and gradually increase to 45 minutes of activity a day, more if you are able.
A slimmer, healthy body is the result of a healthy diet and regular exercise – but it can also improve your mood, boost energy, promote better sleep and enhance your sex life. The Journal of the Association of Medicine and Psychiatry reports that exercise can also improve mental health by reducing anxiety, depression, and negative moods and by improving self-esteem and cognitive function.
Dieting alone may provide short-term weight-loss results. Exercising without supporting your body with a healthy diet can lead to health problems. For a winning combination, incorporate a healthy weight loss diet with regular physical activity. Make these two vital components a permanent part of your lifestyle, and watch every aspect of your life improve!