Drink enough water, focus on your portion sizes, cut out junk food, start a walking routine, and stay consistent, suggests Anvi Shah, founder, CEO, Hyuga Life, a healthcare company.
We focus all our energies on improving our lives and careers, but good health is often ignored. Good health is the fuel you need to lead a meaningful life.
Therefore, it’s important that you prioritise and actively take an effort to maintain and improve it.
It is not easy to wake up one instant and suddenly change your way of life.
However, you can take small steps each day and initiate your journey towards a fitter version of yourself.
I have listed a set of 12 small goals you can set for every month, so that by the end of the year, you see greater results.
Month 1: Prioritise yourself
Before you begin your health journey, you need to understand the basic fact that you are doing this for yourself and yourself alone.
The reason you have decided to undertake this journey is because you want to improve your physical and mental wellbeing.
You want to make yourself a priority and it is only possible when you have set goals to achieve.
At the beginning of the year, understand where you stand in terms of your health and list down your priorities and your weaknesses. This will help you focus on what is more important for you and accordingly help you decide what you can do to make it possible.
Month 2: Start with simple habits
For overall wellness, focusing on the basics of health is very important.
These include practices like drinking enough water, focusing on your portion sizes, cutting out junk food, starting a walking routine, and staying consistent.
Although these things may seem simple, incorporating them into your daily routine can be a task.
Start small. For example, to increase your water consumption, you can develop a habit of carrying a water bottle, or you can even set timely reminders for the same.
To control your portion size, you can start with avoiding distractions like watching television while eating. Reducing the size of your plate also helps.
Month 3: Figure internals for your body
As much as 70 per cent of the Indian population is protein deficient while about 76 per cent of them are Vitamin D deficit.
Deficiencies of iron and calcium are also on a scale as high as 49 per cent and 59 per cent respectively.
Therefore, getting yourself diagnosed and being aware of the internals of your body is a significant step.
This not only helps you to get the required medication on time but it also helps you to plan your health goals more precisely.
Month 4: Focus on your protein
Protein needs to be an essential part of one’s diet because it helps in muscle recovery, recovery, and the creation of new cells in the body.
Regular protein intake can be maintained by food sources like nuts, seeds, tofu, and sprouts.
Month 5: Focus on your gut Health
Your gut is a powerhouse essential for processes like digestion and is also home to good bacteria — probiotics.
To enhance your gut’s health you can consume foods like curd, milk, and kemp.
Month 6: Cut down on sugar
There exists a common narrative that one should focus upon ‘fat-free’.
But in reality, the human body needs some essential fats. Sugar is one of the main culprits.
A major step to a healthy lifestyle involves cutting down on sugar.
But this does not mean that you need to sacrifice sweets. Rather you can shift to either natural alternatives like jaggery powder, or sweeteners like stevia.
Month 7: Focus on your hormonal imbalances
Hormonal imbalances are common in many people but is rarely diagnosed.
Being at the core of mood energy and overall body functions, it is important for one to not only take them seriously but also to take proper medication to treat them.
In this case, consulting a doctor and taking doctor-recommended consultations is necessary.
Month 8: Eat home-cooked food
Eating home-cooked meals is always an easier and better way to maintain a balanced diet.
Find a way to plan your meals well in advance and store the required ingredients you will require for cooking.
If you are new to cooking, start with smoothies, soups and salads, slowly moving to khichdis and one-pot meals. If you are hard pressed for time, you can also hire a cook or a tiffin service to ensure you have at least one home-cooked meal.
Month 9: Focus on your immunity
Immunity is one’s capability to prevent and fight prospective diseases.
To remain consistent in your health journey, you need to work on building and enhancing your overall endurance and immunity.
Apart from including immunity boosting foods like turmeric, ginger, garlic, green leafy vegetables and dry fruits in your daily diet, it is also important that you alter your daily habits to prioritise your health.
When your immunity improves, you will notice how your resistance to diseases will naturally increase and help you heal and recover faster.
Month 10: Walk, jog or play a sport
The benefits of physical activity are well-known.
Regular exercise not only helps you manage your weight but also increases your level of fitness.
You can walk, jog, take up cycling or join a gym for rigorous training. If you love sports, you can simply start playing a game of your choice for a few minutes every day.
Month 11: Focus on your sleep
Good sleep is as important as good food.
It not only provides rest to your mind but also reduces the risk of serious problems like diabetes and heart disease.
Try to get at least 6-7 hours of sleep daily and you will see its impact in terms of more energy and metabolism during the daytime.
If you have difficulty sleeping, there are multiple ways to improve it — like sticking to a daily schedule, reducing screen usage, meditation or taking help of calming music to soothe your mind.
Month 12: Focus on your weight
A common issue faced by young and old today is weight management.
Weight management involves both weight reduction and weight gain.
To achieve your weight-centric goals, you are advised to consult a dietician or a trainer who can guide you with a proper nutrition chart with weekly and monthly targets to track your progress.
Anvi Shah is a chemical engineer from the Institute Of Chemical Technology and an MBA from Cambridge Judge Business School. She founded Hyuga Life in 2021 with the aim of educating people on physical wellbeing and nutrition, and to curate personalised health products from experts for individuals to lead a balanced life.
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