By Nicole Rebenauer, Centre Helps Intern
March is National Nutrition Month, which is a great reminder to reflect on your own diet and nutrition choices. In addition to the more obvious physical health benefits of clean eating and exercise, there are mental health as well. Did you know that ensuring your diet consists of the right amounts of complex carbs, fats, amino acids, vitamins, minerals and water will ensure a balanced mood and feeling of wellbeing?
Here are some nutrition tips and facts to get you feeling great not just this month but every day!
During times of increased stress, it can be tempting to indulge in comfort foods to “feel better”. However, eating foods with little to no nutritional value will only increase your feelings of sluggishness and will make it harder for you to stay focused and energized.
There are mental and emotional benefits to daily exercise such as sharper memory and thinking, better sleep, more energy, higher self-esteem, and stronger resilience. Incorporate physical activity into your busy day by taking the stairs, walking or biking to get around. Not going out? At-home body-weight exercises are an effective way to stay active without leaving your house!
Check out https://www.helpguide.org/articles/healthy-living/the-mental-health-benefits-of-exercise.htm for more information on the different mental health benefits of exercise.
Can’t seem to beat those late-night sweet cravings? Try snacking on some fresh or frozen fruit instead! It will give you the sweetness that you’re craving with the added benefit of essential vitamins and minerals.
Foods that are high in sugar with low levels of nutrients not only increase your insulin levels which leaves you feeling tired and lethargic, but they also don’t keep you full for long. Opt for whole-grain and fresh foods that are absorbed in the body at a slower rate such as brown rice, oats, granola, fruits and vegetables which keep you feeling full for longer and don’t cause mood swings!