As the New Year has begun and we are heading towards the end of the first month, it is a great time to review your current health routines and determine if any improvements could be made. So we thought we would list a few healthy inspirational tips for living the good life this summer!

1 | Stress Less

Stress is a normal response, but can become an unhealthy, chronic problem that affects you physically, mentally, and emotionally. In addition to maintaining healthy levels of omega-3, you could try incorporating some of these ideas:

exercise • meditation • regular holidays mental health days • emotional down time • a support system of family and friends • aromatherapy • a good sense of humour • positive social outings • gardening • yoga • volunteer work

2 | Nix the six!

Cutting down on certain omega-6 (LA) foods will help create a better balance of omega-3s to omega-6s, which helps reduce inflammation in the body. Some common culprits that should be decreased include fried foods, vegetable oils (such as soy, corn, canola, walnut, and sunflower), low fat mayonnaise, and potato chips. Increase your intake of seafood, particularly cold water oily fish like sardines and mackerel.

3 | Exercise for at least 30 to 60 minutes every day

Easy? According to Australian Bureau of Statistics, six out of ten Australians are not meeting the recommended guidelines. Try dancing, swimming, walking up steps, or jogging.

4 | Eat Wisely

Mind your sugar intake by cutting down on baked goods, sweet drinks, and yes, that includes saying no to after work drinks!

Choose organic produce, wholesome grains, and superfoods packed with nutrients. You may like to keep a food journal to track your progress in making healthier choices.

5 | Cook it yourself

Dinner made from scratch with all natural and organic ingredients tastes better and makes you feel good!

6 | Fat is Your Friend

Fat gives your body energy and keeps you warm. But some fats are better than others for your health. Cook in olive or coconut oil instead of vegetable oils and eliminate trans fats that lurk in processed foods. Eat cold-water fish like salmon and sardines and limit your intake of deep-fried foods.

Supplementing your diet with a high quality fish oil is also recommended as omega-3 deficiency is common in Australia.

7 | A Good Gut Feeling

Keeping your digestive system in the best of shape is essential. With an estimated 100 trillion microorganisms living in the intestines, this system can get out of balance from simple things like stress, food allergies, and the use of antibiotics. Taking a probiotic every day or eating probiotic foods, such as sauerkraut and kim chi can keep harmful pathogens in check, aid digestion and nutrient absorption, and support a healthy immune system.

8 | Get Your Vitamin D… Carefully

Astoundingly, an estimated 73 percent of Australians are deficient in vitamin D, which helps prevent certain cancers, heart attacks, and bone fractures, among other conditions. Vitamin D3 (or cholecalciferol) is the natural form of vitamin D produced in the body through exposure to sunlight. Between 10-20 minutes per day of sun exposure (without sunscreen) should provide adequate levels for most people. However, Australia also has the highest rate of skin cancer in the world – so it’s a tricky balance. An easy way to ensure you are getting enough vitamin D3 is via supplementation. If you are unsure about your vitamin D levels, speak with your health care practitioner, who may decide to test your vitamin D by performing a blood test.

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