It’s February! How are those New Year’s Resolutions doing? Are you eating healthier foods? Are you exercising regularly? Are you getting proper rest? Did you give up smoking? Of all the things you can do for yourself to become healthier, studies show that the single one best thing you can do is to be a non-smoker. Giving up cigarettes will improve your health in many ways and could lengthen your life for as many as 10 years. If you have tried and failed please don’t give up, try again. If you are unsure as to how to do it, or need support, go on-line. Health Canada and the Canadian Lung Association have web-sites with plenty of information to help you.
If you are a non-smoker looking to improve your health through eating habits and exercise consider these few tips. Consume some protein at every meal or snack, especially when consuming carbs. This helps maintain energy. The body takes longer to metabolize protein. Your blood sugar levels and therefore your energy will be more even. Consuming carbohydrates causes a rise in blood sugar levels. The body releases insulin to stabilize the sugar levels. The more carbs in the diet, especially the sugary ones, the higher the insulin spike. This also means a bigger drop as the body works to maintain an even level. This is the reason for increased energy after a chocolate bar but then an energy drop not longer after. Avoid the afternoon chocolate bar as a “pick me up'” for this reason. Choose healthier carbs and some protein instead. Add protein to carbs at meal time to keep blood sugar levels even. Some protein sources are nuts, peanut butter, yogurt, cheese, eggs and meats.