5 tips to becoming a healthier you this summer

5 tips to becoming a healthier you this summer

The summer should be about enjoying the nice weather, not about feeling self-conscious in a bathing suit. By making just a few simple changes to eating and exercise habits, a person can make a significant difference to his or her body and confidence, experts say.

Dr. Meena Malhotra, an internal medicine physician at Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge, Ill., explains her “balance and basics” approach to weight loss.

Five tips include:

1) Focus on changing your lifestyle, not going on a diet. A diet comes along with the suggestion that it is short-term. Instead, focus on lifestyle modifications to get healthier, not just to get thinner. Mindset is very important.

2) Focus on losing fat, not losing weight. Your weight comprises a lot of good things like muscles, bones and water. Together, these components define your body composition; they are all needed in proper proportion to maintain good health.

3) Do everything in moderation. Extreme changes will lead to binges, so don’t completely cut out everything “bad” from your diet. Instead, find healthier versions of your favorite recipes and treat yourself every once in a while.

4) Build a support system. Transitioning to a healthier lifestyle is not easy, but finding people to tackle the journey together will help ease the difficulties. Invite friends to go to fitness classes with you, run a fun race, or enjoy a night-in cooking a healthy recipe together.

5) Switch up your workoutAny exercise is good exercise, but your body may be getting complacent with the workouts you are doing. If you are a runner, start biking. If you love strength training, add in some cardio. You will be working out areas of your body that you have not trained before and your body will love it. A great way to switch up your workout is to try a new workout class. Some places offer new members a free class or even a free week of classes.

“I want my patients to focus on getting enough of all the healthy food groups, and I always advise them to incorporate brisk walks outside to enjoy the fresh flowers and green grass,” says Dr. Malhotra.

In addition, she recommends concentrating on maintaining muscle mass by tracking body composition.

“Starvation mode leads to a decrease in muscle mass and poor body composition,” she says.

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health enews Staff
health enews Staff

health enews staff is a group of experienced writers from our Advocate Health Care sites, also including freelance or intern writers.