If your New Year’s resolution is a healthier lifestyle, you’re not alone. Diet, exercise and wellness goals are among the top five New Year’s resolutions year after year. The COVID-19 pandemic has hit close to home for many of us, as we have mourned the loss of people we love, worried over each illness, celebrated recoveries and cheered on our heroic healthcare providers. This crisis has reinforced the importance and value of good health, especially for people living with chronic wounds and compromised immune systems. Healthy habits, like good nutrition and regular exercise, greatly impact our body’s immunity. When you improve your overall wellness, you improve your ability to heal. We hope you will use these resources to make 2021 The Year of Healing.
The easiest way to improve your diet is to eat less processed foods and to eat more whole or fresh foods. Avoid foods with trans fats and instead choose foods that are high in fiber and healthy fats, some of which include the following:
- Fresh fruits and vegetables contain soluble and insoluble fiber.
- Oatmeal, barley and beans are high in soluble fiber.
- Salmon, tuna and trout are full of omega-3 fatty acids.
- Avocados, olive oil, almonds and many other nuts are rich in monosaturated fats.
Exercise Every Day
Get up and get moving. Even moderate exercise, such as walking, helps control weight, improves circulation and increases energy levels. For people with limited mobility, chair-based exercises are a great way to improve heart rate and increase flexibility. You can find exercise tips for seniors and free chair yoga videos from AARP, the American Association of Retired People.
Check-in with your doctors regularly. One way to stay connected is to use your health provider’s patient portal—if you don’t have a user ID and password, ask for help at your next appointment. Most patient portals are part of the healthcare provider’s website. You can login from your computer or phone to leave messages, access test results and read messages from your doctors and nurses.
Aim for Progress, Not Perfection
It is important to set realistic goals and keep a positive attitude. Lifestyle changes do not happen overnight and it may take several days or weeks to see the results of your hard work. To stay inspired, find more tips and downloadable health resources at 2021 The Year of Healing.