Spring Into Healthy Habits: 5 Tips and Bonus Recipe
Spring is here and everything is in bloom! Many of us are thinking about spring cleaning, but what a great time to do some spring cleaning of our health habits. Longer days make it easier to get outside more, and nutritious, delicious fruits and vegetables are in season again.
Try these 5 tips to help you spring into wellness!
- Stay hydrated. The sensation of thirst decreases with age, as does the amount of water in our bodies, which makes seniors more at risk for dehydration. Water is the best way to add fluid to your daily routine without adding calories, and it’s the most effective way to quench your thirst.
- Make sleep a priority. Most healthy older adults need 7-8 hours of sleep each night to feel rested and alert. Staying on a regular sleep-wake schedule can help. Poor sleep habits can increase the risk for obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and depression.
- Get moving. Being physically active is one of the best things you can do for yourself. Staying active boosts your physical and mental health and helps with mobility. Move any way you can, from walking to gardening to chair aerobics to any other way you enjoy.
- Make half your grains (or more) whole. Whole wheat bread, whole grain pasta, brown rice, beans, and fruits and vegetables (with skin on as much as possible) are all great ways to boost your fiber intake. Fiber helps keep you regular, reduces heart disease and cancer risk, and makes you feel more satisfied when you eat.
- Eat the rainbow. Fill at least half your plate with fruits and vegetables at each meal and snack. Brighten up your meals with these colorful gems that are loaded with vitamins, minerals and fiber. Low in calories, fat, saturated fat, and sodium, your heart will thank you!
Bonus Recipe: Chocolate Covered Strawberries
May is National Strawberry Month. Try this delicious recipe with in-season strawberries to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Chocolate Covered Strawberries
- ½ cup semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips
- Wash the strawberries and dry them VERY well. If the strawberries are the least bit wet the chocolate may not stick.
- Line a pan with parchment or wax paper.
- Pour the chocolate chips into a microwaveable bowl or mug.
- Microwave the chocolate in 30 seconds intervals, removing and stirring at each 30 second interval, until it has melted. Stir often, making sure not to burn the chocolate!
- Holding a strawberry by the stem or with a fork, dip into the chocolate, lift and twist slightly, letting the excess chocolate fall back into the bowl, and then place the strawberry on the parchment/wax paper. Repeat with the rest of the strawberries.
- Chill the strawberries until the chocolate sets, about 15 minutes.