The Wellness Habits Project: Start Your Wellness Project, Introduction and Overview

The Wellness Habits Project is an opportunity for you to start incorporating new habits into your life to improve your physical health, mental health, relationships, and community.

Starting in January 2017, a new suggested habit will be posted every week along with researched information about how the habit can help you make choices that improve your wellness. No fluff, folklore, or fads. We select and present each habit based on peer-reviewed, scientifically supported studies. Each habit is small, achievable, and easily combined with other habits to help you develop new routines.  Choose the habits that work for you, modify them as you like, or develop your own wellness habits. … Read the rest of the article

Stretch for 5 Minutes Each Morning (Wellness Habit of the Week)

Stretching is quite possibly one of the easiest forms of physical exercise. You can do it in your bed. You can do it in your chair. You don’t even need to be wide awake to do it; some people do it in their sleep. It doesn’t require any special training. Babies do it. Dogs do it. Cats do it. Even birds, reptiles, and amphibians do it. Stretching is good for you and it feels good, too. So why don’t most adults stretch more? Maybe we should.

Adopt: Why You Should Stretch Every Day

Not surprisingly, incorporating stretching and flexibility training into your routine can help you with a variety of physical health issues.… Read the rest of the article

Add One Whole Fresh Vegetable to One of Your Meals (Wellness Habit of the Week)

So many of us have already heard that we should add more vegetables to our diets. “Eat your vegetables” has been the health promotion plea of parents and healthcare providers for at least a century (and possibly longer). Most of us have had classes in school about eating healthy and anyone with a TV or newspaper subscription has, at some point, encountered stories about how everyone should eat more veggies! However, just knowing that vegetables are good for us doesn’t help us eat them. We must incorporate them into a nutritional habit.

Adopt: Why You Should Add 1 Vegetable to Your Diet Each Day

First, you need to know that vegetables are from plants and include leaves (e.g.… Read the rest of the article

Floss at LEAST Once per Day (Wellness Habit of the Week)

Toothbrush and Floss

Your dentist and dental hygienist are likely to ask you the usual question: How often are you flossing? I interviewed several dental professionals (not identified for privacy) and learned that the majority of their patients rarely flossed, and many of their patients seemed guilty about confessing. Why do they keep asking this question and forcing patients to experience a moment of guilt or shame? You already know the answer: Flossing is good for you!

Adopt: Why You Should Floss at Least Once per Day

Flossing is easy, fast, and cheap, and it does affect your health. There have been multiple reports throughout the years that imply that flossing is not beneficial enough for preventing cavities.… Read the rest of the article

Practice Mindfulness Meditation for 10 Breaths at Least 1 Time per Day (Wellness Habit of the Week)

Mindfulness Meditation

Mindfulness seems to be the latest fad in popular Western culture, but it is so much more than this. It is an essential component of overall well-being and is a significant part of many biological and spiritual approaches to wellness. Meditation is not the “hippie” “woo woo” stuff many people think about. It is a neurological exercise, and just as studying for a test or working out at the gym help you prepare for the challenges of life, mindfulness helps you prepare your brain for handling stress and rediscovering the calmness necessary for appreciation and good decision making.

Adopt the Habit: Why Mindfulness Meditation Is an Important Part of Wellness

Mindfulness meditation is one of the best things you can do for your brain (Kabat-Zinn, 2013; Larouche, Hudon, & Goulet, 2015; Ulrichsen et al., 2016; Verplanken & Fisher, 2014).… Read the rest of the article