Integrative Medicine Blog

Take control of your lifestyle to prevent falling into old habits this fall!

Eric C. Sharer, MPH, RD, CSO, CDN Thursday, August 04, 2016
Istock take control

Research and practice have shown the immense impact that lifestyle can play on our body as well as overall health. Many people feel that they lose control of their health when they are not feeling well or when life becomes busy or stressful. For this reason, the Stram Center believes it is essential to embrace a healthy lifestyle and allow people to take control of their health.

A healthy lifestyle can be defined in many ways, but the Stram Center feels it is important to optimize the following four areas:

  • Diet
  • Exercise/ Physical Activity
  • Sleep
  • Stress Management

The Stram Center Practitioners will work with you to develop an individually tailored plan to optimize your lifestyle.

The changing of the seasons is a great time to work towards improving your lifestyle. Follow these 3 tips to become successful with your lifestyle transformation.

1. Make obtainable goals

One trick is to make appropriate and obtainable goals. People often make overzealous goals and end up becoming frustrated when they struggle to reach those goals. It is better to make small, gradual and steady changes instead of drastic changes that result in frustration, failure, and possibly one returning back to their original habits. If your goal is to be more active, make a goal of trying to exercise one time a week. Once you meet that goal, check it off of your list and make a new goal such as exercising twice a week. This can be empowering for making healthy lifestyle changes.

2. Pick your battles

Remember to also “pick your battles.” If you do not reach your goal right away, instead of getting down on yourself, acknowledge that you did not reach the goal, but also think about why you did not reach your goal. When you identify the reason, you can work towards finding a solution. In the words of Dr. Stram “failure is not trying.”

3. Make lifestyle changes with a friend

Find a friend/loved one who is also interested in improving their lifestyle. Together you can motivate each other to work towards achieving your goals. They also can be your support system during the process.

If you follow these simple tips, you will begin to thrive on your journey towards optimal health. Below are tips and a healthy recipe to help you utilize fresh late summer and fall produce in your diet!

Tips for Utilizing Summer Produce

  • Summer produce can be utilized in a wide variety of recipes. Include your favorite summer produce in soups, salads, stir fries, and even smoothies. Try to buy produce that is local and in season to receive the cheapest, freshest, and healthiest produce possible! For more information go to www.localharvest.org

Tips for Utilizing Fall Produce

·Fall produce can be utilized in a wide variety of recipes. Include your favorite fall produce in soups, salads, stir fries, and even smoothies. Cooked orange starchy vegetables can be blended snuck into casseroles, tomato sauce, and even make a tasty snack. Try to buy produce that is local and in season to receive the cheapest, freshest, and healthiest produce possible! For more information go to www.localharvest.org

Curried Autumn Stew

Recipe By: Eric C. Sharer, MPH, RD, CSO, CDN

Serves 6

4 cups water 4 cupsvegetable stock
*1-3 tbsp. low-sodium soy sauce
1 eachlarge onion, peeled, cored, and diced
1 eachbell pepper, cored and diced
6 each large garlic cloves, peeled and diced
4 cups butternut squash, peeled and diced (approx. 1 medium or ½ large squash) 2 cupcabbage, shredded (approx. ½ small head)
1 each15-oz can diced tomatoes
*2 tbsp. curry powder
*2 tsp. cumin*2 tsp. ground paprika
*½ tsp. black pepper
1 each15-oz can kidney or black beans, rinsed and drained
2 cups fresh or frozen organic corn2-3 tbsp. Vinegar of choice such as brown rice vinegar or apple cider vinegar

* Season soup according to taste. Also add any of your favorite vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, celery, etc.

Directions

1.Add all ingredients to a large pot except for the beans, corn, and vinegar. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer.

2.Cover and simmer until the squash and remaining vegetables are tender. Approximately 15-20 minutes.

3.Add the beans and corn. Cook for 5 minutes longer.

Adjust the seasoning according to taste and add the vinegar, stir thoroughly and serve.For those who dislike vinegar leave it out or pour ½ tsp. per individual bowl.

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