Posts Tagged 'Health'

Let’s Get Personal: Update on MY Wellness Journey

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I’m going to get personal with you and say that my health and wellness journey hasn’t necessarily been a top priority in my life, even though I encourage it throughout all my writing for Marquette Employee Wellness. I would judge people for being so caught up in wanting to better their life and looks, simply because I was jealous that I didn’t have the motivation to do it myself in addition with the consistency to keep it up. Going into this summer, it finally hit me that I needed to make a lifestyle change. I am only getting older and what better than to establish healthy habits while I am still young, in hopes to instill it as a part of my routine in the future. Here are some easy tips for beginners like me on how to start their health and wellness journey today because you are never too late!

EAT BREAKFAST

I don’t always have the biggest appetite waking up in the morning, but the hunger immediately hits me when I am going about my day highly anticipating for lunch time. When lunch and dinner come around, I subconsciously overindulge to compensate for skipping breakfast. Break this habit by starting of the day right with a hearty breakfast. It helps kick start your metabolism, which is responsible for keeping you energized throughout the day and essentially increases your drive to work out. We all live in a fast pace world, so remember to keep up with it by not neglecting the most important meal of the day!

DRINK PLENTY OF WATER

Wanting water to go with every meal has been something that took years for me to gain. Now I can’t even imagine my meals being accompanied with anything else. I have witnessed a positive significance in my skin’s clarity and radiance. I notice that I eat less since the water fills me up throughout meals, which helps me snack less. Since I don’t drink or ever really rely on coffee, it is something that gives me a little pick me up at work when I feel like my energy levels are at a low. The benefits are absolutely endless!

AVOID EATING OUT

All it does is drain your wallet and you tend to lose sight on eating healthy because of all the tempting options that are presented in front of you. The beauty of making your food at home allows for you to have full control of portions and what exactly goes in it. I like to make exceptions to eating out if it is for a special occasion or if I know I will have some good company, but if you are resorting to takeout for a quick bite by yourself out of sheer laziness, I’d recommend to save it for another time when you don’t want to miss out on a social experience. 

DIET

I have never liked the term diet because it sounds so restricting, but it only sounds negative if you think of it that way. I have been experimenting and eating more of the healthier foods I do like, then cutting out unnecessary food that I can deal without. Growing up Asian,  my diet always consisted of rice being paired with some form of protein. Since I can go without rice, I tend to swap it out for veggies knowing that the protein is where I am going to be indulging the most. Little gestures like that all amount to big results!

SKIP NAPS

Naps can provide benefits, but I personally find that it only acts as road bump on a day of where there is potential for so much productivity! It gets me groggy and less motivated to finish off my day strong. After the initial grogginess wears off, I am more alert than ever, which can pose as more harmful when you are trying to get a good night’s rest to reenergize yourself for the next day. So if you can, try to push through and reward yourself with some rest after the day is done!

WORKOUT ROUTINE

I’m wouldn’t consider myself as necessarily a lazy person, but I can say a workout regime of any kind has never been instilled in me, even as a kid since I never participated in any sports. So I really was clueless on where to start. There is nothing wrong with asking for help when you need it. I made a pact with a friend to get fit this summer and work out Monday through Friday after work. Having someone else give you that kick start to get started and keep each other accountable helps eventually turning it into a routine that you can eventually do yourself. I personally HATE running so instead I like to opt for dancing or biking to get that heart pumping, then proceed to do some strength training with weights. There are many alternatives to being active than just your standard jogging, which for me personally is too boring. It is just a matter of finding what fits YOU and playing that perfect music playlist to get you pumped and motivated throughout the whole workout!

GET INTO A ROUTINE

Consistency is the hardest, yet more crucial part to seeing results when embarking on this journey. Your brain thrives off of a routine, so once you have it down within a week, it will only get easier from there and you will become nothing but motivated to stick to it. The brain goes into an auto-pilot mode where these habits eventually  become second nature!

I have never been happier and more comfortable in my own skin than where I am today. I can’t help but assume that my lifestyle change and newfound routine is to blame for this. I am by no means where I want be on my health journey, but the progress that I have been making allows for my goal to seem that much more attainable and constantly reminds me that I am that much closer to it if don’t give up. I am not alone on my health and wellness journey and plan to tune into other people’s experiences to gain inspiration to push myself further. Everyday is a new chance to begin your journey to ultimate health and wellness, so why not start today!

Diana Banzon

Benefits of the Beat

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In honor of Summerfest quickly approaching us, what better way to celebrate how music brings us together than acknowledge the impact it provides for our health. Music is often disregarded as a factor that contributes to overall health and wellness, but its effect and overall message are nothing but powerful. Something as simple as sound has the capability to motivate and inspire people into living their best life. Here are a list of the benefits it has on us and why we should be constantly jamming out to our favorite beats!

Strengthens Running Performance

Working out exerts an immense amount of energy and effort! It would only make sense to reflect that in your music of choice that pumps you up for the work you are going to endure. I personally could NEVER work out without music because I find that it gives me that extra boost of motivation that I need to pull through and finish off strong!

Enhances Sleep Quality

Unfortunately, about 30% of Americans deal with insomnia. Studies showed that students who listened to relaxing music before bed significantly experienced better rest in comparison to students who listened to an audiobook or didn’t change anything from their usual routine.

Limits Food Intake

Studies done at Georgia Tech University showed that dimming the lights and softening the music while people ate led to the consumption of fewer calories and an increase of enjoyment within their meals. Set up the ambiance and make the most out of every meal experience.

Reinforce Learning and Memory

Studies showed that music reinforces your memory but depends specifically on the person, whether or not they were a musician, and what type of music is being presented. As as a result of the research, subjects who were musicians learned and retained information better with more neutral music, as opposed to subjects who were not musicians that learned better with music of their liking. I always find myself associating songs with memories that occurred during the time I listened to that song, that it can only makes sense that one triggers the other!

Makes You Smarter

A study at York University showed that a month of music lessons involving rhythm, pitch, melody and voice contributed to an 90% increase in verbal intelligence among children between the ages 4 to 6. The music training implemented within the lesson has a “transfer effect” that enriches the children’s ability to comprehend words and their meaning.

Alleviates Pain

Music treatment such as softer genres such as classical pieces, meditative music, etc. is used for various patients that is said to reduce pain.

Ability To Shift Mood

Whether you are happy or sad, music has the ability to reflect your current mood. Various beats and messages really resonate with people and their life experiences, making the love for music so universal!

 

Diana Banzon

Watermelon is the Way to GO!

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What fruit is prominent within this scorching summer season, that just so happens to be the best way to cool yourself off and satisfy your hunger? Watermelon of course! As I am here at my job munching on some for breakfast, I wanted to thoroughly investigate in what exactly I am putting into my body, since I know I will be eating it a lot this summer. With all the water and sweetness that comes with every bite of the fruit, I can’t help but think that I am only indulging and not providing any benefits for my body. Fortunately, I was proved very wrong in my assumption!

With the summer heat getting the best of us, our chances of dehydration are more likely. Luckily, watermelon is known to release hydrating properties to the body. I mean are you surprised? It directly states it in the name! In fact, the fruit is made out of 92% water. With having this much water in combination to fiber, it essentially tricks our bodies into thinking we are full, without obtaining a significant amount of calories.

Heart disease is ranked as the number one cause of death worldwide. Anything to reduce the chances of falling under this demographic should be taken into serious consideration. The lycopene found in watermelon can help lower cholesterol and prevent additional damage to it. In regard to blood pressure, the lycopene helps lower it and the citrulline increases the levels of  nitric oxide, which helps your blood vessels expand that results in lower blood pressure.

Aside from solely benefiting internal health, the vitamins watermelon provides benefits hair and skin! Vitamin C found in the fruit make collagen, which contributes to strong hair and supple skin. As for Vitamin A, it assists in the creation and restoration of skin cells that prevent it from looking dry and flaky. Lycopene and beta-carotene helps prevent your skin from sunburn, which is convenient during this sunny summer season when all we want to do is be outside and show off some skin. When people said that beauty started from within, they weren’t lying!

These are only a few reasons as to why you shouldn’t feel guilty in indulging watermelon this summer. Take advantage of it being in season and enjoy it while it is at its most ripe and abundant. Click here for recipes to change up the way you eat watermelon throughout this sunny season.

Happy eating!

Diana Banzon

 

How To Make Your Health Less Ruff

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In honor of the Pup Rally that took place today, June 5, 2018, on Marquette’s very own campus, I felt as though it was most appropriate to post some puppy appreciation. It is no secret that therapy dogs are used heavily around campus, since the college culture has its tendencies of causing a stressful atmosphere. Aside from obviously being cute and cuddly, did you know that there is a science behind why their existence betters our overall health and well being?

The responsibility of owning a dog, comes along with the responsibility of having to take them on frequent walks to let them do their business. Therefore, whether you plan on jogging or walking as your source of a workout for the day, you will always have company and will never have to do it alone. Walking your dog will attract the best kind of attention from others, igniting conversation and bringing joy to anyone you may encounter. The beauty of it all is that you are doing all of this, without even noticing that you are meeting your obligations of staying fit and active for yourself and and your health!

Marquette’s utilization of therapy dogs throughout campus is a great investment to the community surrounding it. With the atmosphere of college always bringing out the worst when it comes to stress, dogs have the ability to lower anxiety and blood pressure, while increase levels of serotonin and dopamine, two neurochemicals that play significant part being in calm and maintaining overall well being. Spending as little as a few minutes, has the capability of causing immediate relief and brightening up your day filled with newfound happiness and motivation.

Despite the popular belief of dog’s being harmful to the well-being of children back then, recent research has proved that it does the exact opposite. Pets are known to help reduce allergies found among children, in addition to strengthening their immune systems when being exposed to a furry friend within the household at a young age.

Dogs’ presence alone has the ability to add more meaning and a purpose to your life, so today appreciate a pup, whether that be through embracing your own, donating to a humane society, or adopting today. The world can use more loving owners to creatures that give the same amount of love back!

Diana Banzon

Eye Health to avoid the Sun’s Stealth

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The sun and its heat have its way of being more prevalent during the summer season. Despite the common misconnection, the sun and its rays take no vacation and have its effects on us year-round, even when the clouds are blocking the direct sunlight itself. Many associate its harmful rays to only damaging the largest organ of our body, our skin, when in reality, its effects go much beyond that.

As a Sunglass Hut associate, I heavily advocate the benefits of investing in quality eyewear to protect the most delicate region of our bodies, our eyes! We tend to disregard the importance of the ability to see and the area that surrounds our source of vision. Here are a couple effects the sun has on eyes along with the area surrounding it, giving us more of reason to protect this area!

Eye diseases are a serious matter. Too much exposure from the UV light emitted by the sun has the potential to cause cataracts, growths on the eye, and forms of cancer. Although these conditions take a while to develop, preventative measures such as unitizing broad brimmed headwear and sunglasses make a world of a difference no matter how old you are.

With the area around the eyes being the most thin and delicate, it also happens to be the most prone to show the first signs of aging. Sun exposure decreases the collagen found in skin that essentially provides its moisture and elasticity. In result is causes eye wrinkles known as “crow’s feet”, eye puffiness, and undereye bags. To help combat this issue, utilizing facial moisturizer that contains SPF helps to counteract this damage.  To really target the situation, utilizing richer eye creams will hydrate the area affected and is also recommended to be applied nightly for those who are 30 and older. Preventative measures are always the best way to help decrease the issue in the first place by avoiding physical trauma such as rubbing the eye or having a heavy hand when applying or removing makeup.

Despite all these scary claims of the damage sun can do, the exposure can actually be beneficial to the eyes when done in moderation or when it doesn’t have direct in contact with its UV rays. Seeing natural sunlight can promote better function in the brain. This brings me back to the point where we shouldn’t be afraid of the sun, just be aware of our limitations when exposed to it.

 

Diana Banzon

 

 

Brighten your days with balance!

White Blooming Flower Under the Tree during Daytime

Spring time seems to be finally here in Milwaukee! And it is exciting that the weather is finally warming up as the semester is coming to a close. With the end of the semester, I know I have been seeing a lot of stress in everybody on campus. There are so many great ways to relieve stress ranging from healthy eating, to exercise, or to spending time with friends and family.

When people think about dealing with their stress, they often overlook who bonding and spending time with others can work wonders on stress reduction. Spending time with others is one of the best things we can do for ourselves. Taking the time to be social and relax with friends or family can help us take our mind off of the parts of life that are stressing us out the most. I know it’s hard to think about carving out time to spend with the people we love when we have an important deadline at work, or when there are stressful situations going on, but it is so essential to make that time!

Surrounding yourself with positive people during the hardest times keeps us balanced. So many times during my time at Marquette and in my internship roles I have seen my students and colleagues that work too much (myself being one of them). However, as a person who is so passionate about wellness, I think I have done a great job of knowing when the extra work I am doing becomes too much. I have learned my limits the hard way, and since then have made conscious decisions to bring balance to my life. When I am in the middle of a bunch of work and I am extremely stressed out, I allow myself the permission to take a break! During crunch times it may seem impossible to take a break, but trust me, in the end you and your mind will be glad that you chose to have some down time.

Creating balance in our lives is important in everything that we do, but time is so difficult to budget in the modern craze of electronics and social media. This just gives us all the more reason to ensure we make time for those that we love. Spending time with friends and family builds our relationships and creates memories. And there are so many opportunities to spend some great, quality time with others, especially once it has warmed up outside. The warm weather invites us all to get out and go for a hike with our family, or to grill a healthy recipes and hang out in the sun, and in the end, it is the perfect opportunity for us to connect with others, create balance in our lives, and to take some of the stress away.

I encourage all of you to grab your friends and family, and get them all outside enjoying the weather, doing something active, grilling something healthy, and overall creating a balance in your life! Enjoy the last couple weeks of the 2018 spring semester, Marquette!

Alicia Diedrich

 

Be the difference: reduce

adventure, ball-shaped, blurEarth Day is coming up next weekend, so I am a little bit early with this post. But it’s never too early to start doing our part to save the earth. Earth Day is just one day and while doing something resourceful on that day is great, it is not enough to combat all of the problems that we are experiencing with the environment.

One way for us to be the difference for our earth is participating in cleanups, planting trees, or doing other “Earth Day activities.” However, we can do so much more that will make a greater difference in the end. And surprisingly some of the actions we can take to combat pollution lies in making very small changes in our everyday lives. On average, Americans produce 1,606 pounds of trash a year. That is a lot! And while we can do our part by picking up maybe 10 pounds of trash during a highway cleanup once a year, that doesn’t even make a dent in the amount of trash we are producing during that year.

A lot of the trash that we make comes from everyday things such as water bottles, plastic bags, paper products, coffee cups, straws, and the list goes on and on. The thing about all of these products is there are better options out there.

Instead of using plastic water bottles everyday just to throw them out, go our and buy a nice reusable one. I for one believe that a reusable water bottle has the added benefit of helping you drink more water too. Instead of asking for plastic bags at the grocery store every time, buy a few reusable canvas bags and bring them with you every time you shop. They also hold up better, so you can fit more items in less bags, meaning you will have less trips from the car to the house to bring your items in with you. Instead of using paper towels, get reusable rags that will do the same trick. Instead of taking coffee in a to go cup every morning, get a nice thermos or mug that you can reuse. Plus, you can hold a lot more coffee in these and it will stay hot for a lot longer. You can’t say no to lots of hot coffee. Instead of using disposable plastic straws in your drinks, buy a reusable plastic or metal straw. Another pro tip is that drinking from a straw also helps you drink more water. So go out and get yourself some awesome reusable products so you can start reducing the amount of trash that you make.

I want to see you all out doing great things on Earth Day, but I also want to see a lot more reusable products in all of your hands around campus. Be the difference to the earth today.

Alicia Diedrich

 


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