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Health and Wellness

Active Aging Redefines Health and Wellness

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What does it mean to be healthy as we get older? For most of us, it’s simply the opposite of illness. And staying healthy equates to managing diseases and chronic conditions.

But there is a movement to expand the definition of health and wellness in order to accommodate the idea that being healthy is the process of getting the most out of what life has to offer — regardless of physical age.

Click above to learn more about active aging.

Giving Thanks!

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Happy Thanksgiving! What a wonderful thing!  A whole day dedicated to giving thanks for what we have individually, and as a family or group!

If you are looking for a reason to be thankful, research has shown that being thankful is actually good for your health. Can an “Attitude of Gratitude” really change your health?

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Peg’s Perspective: Human Connection and Mirror Neurons

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Do you ever wake up and feel like you can conquer the world?   Yes—me too! And, if you carry that mood with you all day, chances are many people will pick up on it. They may say things like “You’re in a good mood today,” or “You look good today!” or many other phrases that we love to hear.  But have you ever stopped and asked yourself how these people know that you’re in a good mood? Or how your positive mood is impacting those around you?

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Staying Hydrated When It’s Hot!

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It’s summer, we are naturally spending more time outside. Enjoying our time playing with grandkids, gardening, and long neighborhood walks are many of the highlights of summertime. Make sure you stay hydrated while you are living life well this summer!
The Wesley Communities Dietician, Lisa Kaylor Wolfe, shares her suggestions on staying hydrated in the heat of summer.

Healthy Comfort Food Recipes

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Typically, when you think comfort food, you think large portions with lots of cheese (and maybe a little grease)! We tend to eat comfort food when it’s cold outside or when life gets tough. But, giving into these cravings too much could be bad for your health. It may result in feeling even worse or gaining weight. Check out these tips for when you have a strong comfort food craving.

Tips for eating your favorite comfort food:

  • Stop when you are full. Often, when eating comfort food we eat far too much. Why? Well, because it makes us feel good. Try to slow down when eating these foods. This will not only allow you to enjoy all of the flavors, but you’ll recognize when you are full, before it is too late.
  • When you just have to have that mac and cheese, then do it. But, make a conscience decision. Ask yourself, when is the last time I treated myself to something I enjoy eating, but isn’t the best for me? If it was last month, go for it. If it was breakfast this morning, maybe you should skip out this time.
  • Recognize your triggers. Many times, we can stop ourselves from our cravings if we recognize what is triggering those cravings. Let’s say, for example, you always want chocolate cake after a rough day. The rough day is the problem, not the fact you are craving the cake. You may spend all your time saying, I will stop craving chocolate cake verses, I will take time out of my busy days to take care of myself. By focusing on the problem, not the reaction to the problem, you may be able to limit these cravings.
  • Modify your favorite comfort foods! There can be many different substitutions for things to make a healthy alternative to your favorite comfort foods, see below to ideas.

Healthy comfort food ideas:

Turkey Chili

Take a note from one of our chef’s favorite dish, Turkey Chili. This spin on traditional comfort food is a healthy alternative! The Turkey Chili recipe combines beans, turkey, veggies and spices for a nutrient dense meal.

Cauliflower Crust Pizza

Trick yourself into thinking you’re eating pizza with this healthy crust. Top this heathy crust with veggies and you’re in for a full stomach.

Spinach Artichoke Lasagna

This is a great option for a weekend night, or dinner party. It takes more time to prepare, but your family and friends will thank you!

What are your favorite comfort foods?

Keeping a Routine Through Tough Times

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Whether your family member has just been diagnosed with a life-limiting illness, passed away or you are going through a divorce, life can get hard. When things like this happen, we often find ourselves lying in bed a little longer in the morning, and dragging our feet throughout the day. Sound familiar? Trust me, we understand. That’s why it’s so important to keep a routine during any tough time. But, that’s easier said than done! Use these 3 tips to help you keep a routine, even when it feels impossible.
1. Start your day with something you love
Do you enjoy listening to the latest podcasts? Catching up on the news? Or, having a warm cup of coffee on your porch? Wake up, and make that thing the first thing you do in the morning. Not only will it help you to get out of bed, but it will get your day started on a positive note. When you wake up this way you may be more upbeat for the remainder of the day.
2. Change your expectations
Many people believe that a routine is set in stone and cannot be adjusted. And, this is simply not the case. You may not feel up to do everything you were doing before this tragedy right away. And, that is okay! Change your expectations to be more realistic. Remove the unnecessary tasks from your routine, but ensure that you continue to do the things that mean the most to you.
Let’s say that your typical day consists of waking up, going to the gym, cooking breakfast, showering, going to work, taking your dogs for a walk, getting dinner with your best friends, watching the latest episode of your favorite TV show, then cleaning your house, before you finally go to sleep. When you are faced with a difficult time, each of these activities can seem more and more daunting. Focus on the key activities that make you feel good and do those. Try to clean one room instead of the whole house. Or, opt into an at-home workout instead of going all the way to the gym in the morning. These minor adjustments can make a world of a difference when you are pushing through a hard time.
3. Let your emotions run their course
Begin to schedule in time to deal with your emotions because it’s important to let your emotions out. You may confide in a trusted friend over coffee a few times a week. Or, schedule time to write about it before bed. Maybe, you’ll talk to your family members about it in the comfort of your own home. If you don’t feel comfortable talking with your friends and family about the situation, you can find support groups in your area. These groups could be a great option, too.
But, no matter what remember you are not alone. Many times, people who have been in your position before can give you great advice. But, sometimes you need to seek professional help. Always talk to your healthcare provider about any health concerns, including anxiety, depression and grief. Your health care provider may wish to monitor your health during this time.