Mrs. Cardiology, 10 Health Resolutions, 5 Scientific Ways to Succeed
Mrs. Cardiology–Heart Tips Not Tricks
Hosted by: MrsCardiology
Title: Mrs. Cardiology, 10 Health Resolutions, 5 Scientific Ways to Succeed
Time: 01/08/2016 08:45 AM EST
Episode Notes: Health resolutions are great starting a new year, but surveys show that they often don’t make it past two weeks or even less. As in anything else, YOU NEED A PLAN. Culled from her fireside chats with her cardiologist husband, Dr. Santosh Pandit, Mrs. Cardiology has come up with Ten Healthy Resolutions for 2016. More importantly she has searched around to put some science behind putting them into a 90 day plan instead of one year with very good scientific steps to help you succeed, Six Scientific Steps to Be Exact, 10 Resolutions and Breaking it down into 90 Day Increments.
How many New Year’s Resolutions have come and gone especially when they have to do with your health. How long do yours last, a week, a month, a couple of days? Well if you are serious about improving your health, Mrs. Cardiology has some suggestions for worthwhile health goals and some scientific guidelines for a 90 day plan to make them work and then move on to the next ninety days. But it all starts with knowing what your goals are and why and writing them down, then having a plan of implementation.
Here are the ten most popular and probably the most worthwhile health goals for 2016.
1. Lose weight
2. Quit smoking
4. Cut back on alcohol
5. Sleep More
6. Eat The Anti-inflammatory Diet
7. Don’t stop snacking but eat healthier snacks
8. Learn to Breathe properly
9. Get Fit
10. Can Coffee Breaks and Take Tea Breaks
1. Lose weight
• Drink More Water
• Cut back on Sugars and Starches, lowering your insulin will lower your desire for sweets and additional calories
• Eat more protein and fiber through ancient grains and vegetables
• Use Smaller Plates to fool yourself into thinking you are getting more
• Sleep Better
• Move your body
2. Quit smoking
Plain and simple, the world is becoming a smoke free environment and there are less and less places to smoke in public and it is detrimental to your health and the health of others around you, it is no longer considered attractive and will definitely shorten your life. Many hospitals have great free info on a quit smoking plan.
A little pressure now and again won’t kill us; in fact, short bouts of stress give us an energy boost. But if stress is chronic, it can increase your risk of—or worsen—insomnia, depression, obesity, heart disease and many other illnesses.
4. Slow down on imbibing alcohol
Much has been written about the health benefits of a small amount of alcohol, but too much tippling is the bigger problem. Alcohol in excess affects the brain’s neurotransmitters and can increase the risk of depression, memory loss, or even seizures. It is also puts you at risk for liver and heart disease, hypertension stroke and mental deterioration. There is even evidence that it may contribute to certain cancers.
5. Sleep More
The old saying, “I need my beauty sleep,” still holds true as sleep does wonders for your mood and appearance but it also benefits your health. Many people diet consistently but don’t stop losing weight until they begin to get a suitable amount of sleep. Sleep also strengthens your memories by a process called consolidation.
6. Eat an Anti-inflammatory Diet
This should be a lifelong guide intended to counteract chronic inflammation, which is now credited with heart disease, many cancers and Alzheimer’s disease. Poor eating habits are the main contributor to chronic inflammation. The anti-inflammatory diet can help you correct that: it points the way to food choices that can help you remain optimally healthy. Here’s a link to the Dr. Oz’s Anti-Inflammatory Food Pyramid. http://www.doctoroz.com/article/anti-inflammatory-food-pyramid
• All fruits and vegetables: Try to get all the colors!
• Whole and cracked grains: Oats, brown rice, whole rye, whole-wheat breads and pastas
• All beans and legumes
• Healthy fats: Extra-virgin olive oil, walnuts, avocados, hemp seeds, flaxseed
• Fish and seafood: Salmon, black cod, sardines
• Whole soy foods: Edamame, soy nuts, soy milk, tofu, tempeh
• Omega-3 enriched eggs
• Skinless poultry and lean meats
• Spices: Ginger, turmeric, garlic, cinnamon, holy basil, rosemary
• Teas: White, green, oolong
• Red wine (but no more than 1 to 2 glasses a day!)
7. Don’t stop snacking, eat healthier snacks.
Most nutritionists will tell you that snacking is a good idea because it keeps your blood sugar levels and energy steady and can improve your mood and help with appetite control. Processed junk food however is not the way to go. Too many calories and the wrong kind of fats! Also too much salt, hidden sugar and addititives! Bit planning ahead of time by carrying food with your or keeping it in your fridge or pantry is a great way to stay healthy. Plan on things like fresh or dried fruit, raw, unsalted nuts, natural cheeses, 70% cocoa dark chocolate are all good choices.
8. Learn to Breathe Properly
Simple breathing techniques offer a drug-free way to help lower your blood pressure, calm a racing heart, or settle an upset digestive system. Proper breathing has direct influence on emotional states and moods. When you’re upset, you breathe rapidly, shallowly, and irregularly, but you can’t be upset if your breathing is slow, deep, quiet and regular. At first, the effects are subtle, but they will gain power the more you repeat them. Whether you want to address health problems or just relax and reduce stress, make this the year to learn and practice these proper breathing techniques.
9. Get Fit
Anything that moves your body can help you get fit. But let’s face of us, need something more regimented and this is the time of year when many great gyms are selling memberships for as low as $20.00 a month. You could also team up with a buddy and walk everyday or take the clothes that are hanging on your treadmill off and actually use it.
10. Can the Coffee Breaks and Take Tea Breaks
Green tea can actually improve your cholesterol ration, as well as help protect against cancer and bacterial infections. The difference between green and the more familiar black tea is in the preparation: both come from the same plant, Camellia sinesis, but to make black tea, leaves go through an oxidation process that darkens them. Unfermented green tea contains more catechins. The benefits however do not stop there, learn to savor quality teas and use them as a reward at the end of a hard day or a way to unwind and decrease your stress or just as a pick me up.
Six Scientific Steps to Keeping Those Healthy Resolutions
American philosopher Will Durant said, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit.” This advice came after his discussion of Centuries old advice from Aristotle that success doesn’t come overnight but that it comes from proper disciplined steps to get from Point A to Point B. The straight and narrow might be the path you want to follow but distractions will derail the creation of good habits. It’s so easy to slide back into our old ways. So if you can’t depend on human nature, author of “The Sparring Mind,” Gregory Ciotti simplifies keeping health resolutions to a science.
1. Make “micro quotas” and “macro goals”
“Dreaming big” is definitely good advice but to make habits stick you have to find ways to balance desire to dream bit with your day to day activities which unfortunately don’t always result in quick and lasting change.
Ciotti has figured out that the answer is to create “micro quotas” and “macro goals.” Big dreams equate to the goals which are the big picture that you wish to reach SOMEDAY. But quotas are small amounts of work that you must do every day to reach these bigger goals. Quotas make your bigger goals an eventual assured reality because quotas make each day approachable
Marketer and Author Dan Kennedy is a multiple bestselling author who set a micro quota of writing each morning.
2. Create behavior chains
Creating habits that stick works best when making use of our current routines, instead of trying to fight them. Environmental “triggers” let us know that it’s time to act on our habit. “Also known implementation intentions, this tactic involves picking a regular part of your schedule and then building another “link in the chain” by adding a new habit.”
For instance, instead of I will not eat junk food, you could aim for, “I will arrange my menu for the day, the evening before and make sure that I have all of the ingredients and the preparation arranged. According to Ciotti, one should choose contextual cues over willpower. So the next time you decide to cut down on calories, you can tell yourself, “If it is mealtime, I will only eat lean meat or fish and vegetables or salad.”
3. Eliminate excessive options
Ciotti says “According to research on self-control and in books like The Willpower Effect — there is great power in being boring. Take, for instance, Barack Obama’s insistence on never wearing anything but blue and gray suits. According to the president, ‘I’m trying to pare down decisions. I don’t want to make too many decisions about what I’m eating or wearing. Because I have too many other decisions to make.’ ”
Well supported research on self control finds that making repeated choices mentally drains energy. there are multiple articles by psychiatrists, scientists and philosophers who maintain that keeping up a long term disciple or habit starts with finding the mundane, boring parts of your life, creating routines and much as possible and make fewer decisions. Mrs. Cardiology’s take is if there is no chocolate cake in the fridge because you continually buy all the good things you need to eat, then you won’t have to choose between chocolate cake and an apple or banana. So routinize as much as you can in your life and the healthy habits you want to establish will follow.
You won’t need any willpower if you stop buying Oreos or frozen pizzas. This is the type of routine to embrace for lasting change.
4. Process plan (but don’t fantasize)
You will never figure out how if you don’t figure out why. Wishing and hoping won’t get you there unless you figure out definitively why you want to develop a healthy habit. This is not a small detail but plays a huge role in developing a lifelong healthy habit. Visualization of the outcome itself is not enough; visualization of the process is really what is needed: According to Ciotti, this visualization style works for two reasons:
• Planning: visualizing the process helped focus attention on the steps needed to reach the goal.
• Emotion: visualization of individual steps led to reduced anxiety.”
5. Eliminate “ah-screw-its”
These are two rather unscientific terms for the fragile nature of new habits. And according to Ciotti, therefore we must eliminate anything that might lead us astray. These are the times that you find yourself saying “Screw this; it’s not worth the effort!” The solution is to examine where things start to break down and eliminate those circumstances. One example might be trying to create the habit of going to the gym but only having one set of gym clothes and realizing they are dirty. The solution would be buying a second set of course or making sure they are washed and in a gym bag ready to go for the next day.
Mrs. Cardiology hopes that you find both these healthy habits and the ways to adopt and keep them will help you. Please feel free to contact me with your ideas and success stories that may help others or just leave your comments here. You can read Gregory Ciotti’s blog on how to change your habits and keep them here:
If you just follow even one of these suggestions you will have reason to celebrate.
(c) Sunita Pandit dba Mrs. Cardiology 2013-2016. All Rights reserved. This blog may be reposted with the following attribution:
Mrs. Cardiology is a weekly anchor podcast on PositivelyPittsburghLiveMagazinze.com and all show notes can be found at: http://mrscardiology.com