It’s no surprise January is National Healthy Weight Awareness Month and Family Fitness Month — everyone looks forward to a fresh start and new beginning this time of year.
Looking for ideas to stay active during the cold, winter months? Enjoying activities alongside your loved ones often feels more like fun then “working out” and typically leads to more movement over time. So try doing things with a family member, friend or buddy. Swimming at an indoor pool, bundling up for a walk, hitting the slopes and visiting the local recreation center are all great indoor activities to keep us moving this winter.
The updated and recently released Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans recommend children and adolescents (ages 6-17) get 60 minutes or more of moderate to vigorous physical activity daily and adults (ages 18-64) should do at least 150 to 350 minutes of moderate intensity activity per week. Some of the benefits you might find with regular activity include sleeping better, more energy, increased strength and endurance.
While working to achieve more movement, don’t forget the importance of balanced nutrition.
Focus on nutrient-rich foods:
- Fat-free and low-fat milk, cheese and yogurt
- Vibrant-colored vegetables
- Whole, fiber-rich grains
- Brightly colored fruits and 100 percent fruit juices
- Lean meats, skinless poultry, fish, eggs, beans and nuts
MyPlate is a great visual to illustrate meal by meal what your plate should look like. Make the healthy choice the easy choice.
Your health and weight are connected. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, if your body mass index falls into the range of overweight or obese, you may be at a higher risk for some diseases and conditions such as stroke, some cancers, hypertension or high blood pressure and Type 2 diabetes. To learn more visit Your Health and Your Weight.
With regular activity and balanced nutrition, you’ll feel your best self in no time. Together we continue to build a healthy, high-achieving generation of youth.
Written by Jaclyn St. John, a registered dietitian, mom, and lover of all things family, food, fitness and fun. If you have questions or comments, please contact me at [email protected]. St. John works for Dairy West, which promote the dairy industry and dairy products locally, nationally and globally.