Wellness Newsletter, Vol. 2

team
To help you stay active and healthy, the Wellness Committee has put together some great ideas and resources to keep you fit and motivated!

Go Fly a Kite

With social distancing in the news everywhere you look, here is an activity you can do on your own, or with your children and still stay 6 feet apart!

Every kite begins with a lifting surface (usually called the sail).  The sail can be made of any number of materials including paper, silk, old t-shirts, or ribbon.  The sail is supported by a structure or framework.  Framework designs can be traditional quadrilateral or stretched diamond shape.  The framework is attached to a line or string.  There are different ways to attach the line to the frame including a direct tie or with line segments that can be adjusted to change the flight angle.  The last part of the kite is the tail.  Depending on the design of the kite, the tail can be ornamental or can be designed to provide stability to the kite. Follow this link for directions on how to make a kite: https://www.wikihow.com/Make-a-Kite.

Once your kite is complete, look for a location that is open and away from obstacles.  Never fly a kite near power lines and always check the weather to make sure a storm isn’t in the making.

Loosen the string on your kite a bit and holding it up behind you, start running until the kite lifts off, let out the string and away it goes! Whether you create your own, or buy a kite from the store,  flying is a great activity for grown ups and children alike.  Take a few hours this weekend and challenge everyone in your family to build a kite, then see which one flies the highest!

To Your Health

We all know that working from home has created some unhealthy snacking habits! The refrigerator is just too convenient to just walk by without opening the door and looking inside! So, here’s a recipe to make and keep tucked away for those wondering trips through the kitchen!

Frozen Yogurt Bark with Berries

A delicious, fun and healthy snack!

ingredients:
2 cups nonfat plain yogurt
¼ cup agave (honey or Maple Syrup are OK to use)
½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon fresh lemon juice
Strawberries, sliced
Blueberries
Raspberries
Chopped pecans, granola, pretzels, Chex Mix (or whatever crunchy thing you want to add)

instructions
Line a baking sheet with wax paper and set aside
In a large mixing bowl, combine yogurt, agave, vanilla, and lemon juice; whisk until combined
Transfer yogurt mixture to prepared baking sheet and spread around to even out the thickness.
Top with berries
Garnish with the crunchies
Freeze for 2 – 3 hours, or until firm
Cut into pieces and serve
Keep remainder bark in the freezer (if there is any!)

Peanut Butter, Apples and Celery

Add raisins and make it fun and healthy!

ingredients:
1 medium apple
2 – 3 stalks celery
4 tablespoons peanut butter (all-Natural)
Raisins

instructions
Slice apples and cut celery into sticks
Spread both with peanut butter
Sprinkle with raisins and serve

Herb and Cheese Cucumber Bites

Put a little flair to your snack!

ingredients:
1 English Cucumber
1 (8 oz) package cream cheese softened
½ teaspoon onion powder
¼ teaspoon dried thyme
¼ teaspoon dried basil
½ teaspoon dried dill weed
¼ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1 clove garlic very finely minced
1 tablespoon fresh chopped parsley
1 tablespoon fresh chopped chives
Thinly sliced grape tomatoes or black olives

instructions
Using mixer combine cream cheese, dried thyme, dried basil, dill weed, black pepper, garlic, parsley and chives
Beat until well mixed and creamy
Pipe or spoon onto cucumber rounds
Top with sliced grape tomatoes or black olives.

Orange Creamsicle Smoothie

For dessert!

ingredients:
1 orange, peeled
1 tsp vanilla
½ cup almond milk
½ banana
½ cup ice
*good with a serving of vanilla or plain protein powder

Coconut Almond Smoothie

More dessert!

ingredients:
1 cup coconut milk
1 tbsp shredded coconut
1 tbsp almond butter
½ tsp cinnamon
1 banana
1 up ice

Protect yourself from the sun

With summer in full swing, it’s the perfect time to head outdoors and enjoy the sunny weather.  But are you protecting yourself from potential risks?  The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has named July as Ultraviolet (UV) Safety Month.  The goals is to spread the word about how important it is to protect everyone’s skin from the harmful effects of UV rays. 

Some people think about sun protection only when they spend a day at the lake, beach or pool.  But sun exposure adds up day after day, and it happens every time you are in the sun.  Even though sunlight is the main source of UV rays, you don’t have to avoid the sun completely.  And it would be unwise to stay inside if it would keep you from being active, because physical activity is important for good health.  But getting too much sun can be harmful.  There are some simple steps you can take to limit your exposure to UV rays.

Simply staying in the shade is one of the best ways to limit your UV exposure.  If you are going to be in the sun, “Slip! Slop! Slap! And Wrap!” is a catchphrase that can help you remember some of the key steps you can take to protect yourself from UV rays:

  • Slip on a shirt.
  • Slop on sunscreen.
  • Slap on a hat
  • Wrap on sunglasses to protect the eyes and skin around them

Next to regular handwashing, the best way to protect yourself from viruses and other illnesses is as easy as counting sheep.  The physical impact of lack of sleep extends beyond low energy, moodiness, and brain fog.  Science shows that when we don’t get adequate sleep, our immune system suffers the consequences. 

How do I get more sleep?

Most adults thrive on 7.5 to 9 hours of sleep each night.  For kids and teens that number is even higher.  When life gets stressful, getting adequate sleep can be even more difficult as we work through increased demands on our energy and challenges with quieting our minds to achieve restful sleep.  Here are some tips to help: 

Try a meditation app.  Calm and Headspace are great, particularly the sleep stories, which are designed to help you fall asleep more quickly and sleep more deeply.  You can also find free sleep stories and guided relaxation sessions on YouTube or with your subscription to Spotify and other music services.

Go devise-free for one hour prior to bedtime.  The blue light emitted by phones, tablets and TVs block your body’s melatonin production.  Try setting your devices to “night mode”, which cuts some of the blue light.

Stick to a bedtime routine.  Take a warm bath, drink sleepy-time tea, journal or anything to help consistently tell yourself it’s bedtime.  Experiment to find what works for you but stick with a routine for at least a week before moving on to something new. 

Get at least 30 minutes of physical activity daily.  In a way it’s quite simple; your body feels like it has done its job and accomplished something when you get regular activity. 

How should I eat to get better sleep?

This one is so important we have a separate list of tips.

Watch your alcohol intake.  Study after study shows that while alcohol may help you feel sleepy initially, it disrupts sleep quality and often causes nighttime waking, reducing sleep duration.

No caffeine after noon.  Research shows caffeine shortens deep, REM sleep, even in those who don’t feel affected by it. 

Limit water intake an hour before bed.  If you frequently wake up to urinate during the night, you might take it a step further and try ¼ cup pumpkin seeds as a daily snack.  This has been shown to lessen nighttime urination.

Eat a Kiwi.  According to one study, eating just one kiwi fruit a day can lead to better REM sleep;  It’s delicious and full of antioxidants, fiber and vitamin C. 

Consider a supplement.  If you mind just won’t shut off at night, ask your healthcare provider or dietitian about finding a supplement, such as magnesium or melatonin, and dosage that’s right for you.

…And now for something funny.


Stay positive. Stay Active.

Be smart, and be safe!

For all of us, young and old, regular physical activity is important for staying healthy!  Compared to just sitting around most of the time, moderate-intensity physical activity is associated with better immune function.  Regular physical activity can help reduce your feeling of stress and anxiety (which many of us may be feeling the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic).  Below are some strategies to maintain physical activity and fitness.

The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans recommends 150-300 minutes per week of moderate-intensity aerobics physical activity and 2 sessions per week of muscle strength training.  Fit in 2,5,10 or 20 minutes, however and wherever you can.   Every Minute counts!

Don’t sit all day!  For Example:  Every hour set a watch or timer to get up and move around, do a lap around your home or an active chore.  For example, throw some clothes in the laundry, take out the garbage, make y our bed.  Feel energized and productive at the end of the day.

And finally…

Welcome to the new go365 plan year! More info to come…

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