Friday, October 02, 2009

Promote Healthy Life-Long Lifestyles: Top 10 Tips

Last night I learned what the acronym BPA (Bisphenol A, a chemical compound commonly found in plastic drink and food containers) means. I also found out that Himalayan rocks combat negative computer-generated ions! These are just a few of the facts I learned during the "Women’s Preventative Health Panel: Women Who Health" conference sponsored by the Younger Women’s Task Force-New Jersey Chapter.

Speakers included Joan Denzer, Sierra Club; Founder Kathy Morris, Inner Journeys; Program Director Sheila Quarles, Inner Journeys; Certified Personal Trainer Gretchen Vogel; and YWTF-NJ Board Member and Field Director Jackie Cornell-Bechelli, Planned Parenthood.

We discussed ways to ensure and promote healthy lifestyles through education and awareness. The strategies that the presenters shared to promote healthy life-long lifestyles were relevant, useful, and attainable. Here are my top 10 tips, which I plan to incorporate into my daily life:

1. Use glass bottles instead of plastic bottles to avoid BPA.

2. Eat the bigger-sized fish sparingly (if at all) to avoid high levels of mercury (the bigger the fish the more mercury it contains).

3. Visit Shopper's Guide to Pesticides and What's On My Food? to learn which foods contain the most pesticides.

4. Eat organic foods and fruits whenever possible (less pesticides and synthetic chemicals).

5. Stop worrying about weight and the numbers on the scale and instead strive for a body fat of 22% (body fat below 29% is average; 22% is optimal).

6. Reduce intakes of white flour, sugar, and rice (low nutrients, high glycemic foods).

7. Stay hydrated to stay healthy (healthier heart, skin, and water's an appetite suppressant - sometimes you think you're hungry but you're really thirsty) by drinking ½ my body weight in ounces daily.

8. Exercise more effectively: three times a week strength training and three times a week movement/cardio.

9. Get massages regularly. Massages are not a luxury, but a necessity.

10. Research and use natural remedies to alleviate stress and anxiety (burning lavender oil eases stress and reduces anxiety).

Hope you find these strategies just as useful as I did!