Integrative nutrition

Proper diet isn’t just about what we’re eating. It’s about everything that we’re consuming in our lives, from the way we move to our relationships, satisfaction with career, spirituality and our connectedness to the world around us.

I’ve spoken with many women who know what they should be eating and how they should be moving their bodies, but for some reason, they just don’t.

We understand that fruits and vegetables are healthy, and eating pizza for breakfast isn’t, but we can’t seem to create a lifestyle around healthy decisions.

While nutrition and exercise certainly are part of a healthy lifestyle, checking in on the other parts of our lives and the way we’re consuming it might be the key to establishing a healthy, balanced life we all want.

The primary parts of our life — career, relationships, movement and spirituality — are big determinants on our overall health, and balance with them can help us make healthier food choices.

Satisfaction with a career has been shown to impact both our mental and physical health. Find ways to like your job by strengthening relationships with co-workers through positive connection rather than office gossip. Start a side gig doing what you are passionate about until you get to a place where it can become a full-time career. I promise, if you’re interested in it, there are at least a few other people in the world who are, too.

Text an old friend to meet for coffee, have healthy communication with your partner about things that are bothering you, or join a community of people that are interested in the same things you are. Feeling a strong bond and connection to your community can positively impact our health.

Find 10 minutes to add movement into your day. Whether it’s a walk outside, a quick yoga flow or playing outside with your dog, moving our bodies in sustainable, enjoyable ways is essential to our health and happiness.

And last but certainly not least, try meditation. The benefits of it are endless, and establishing a practice can provide us with a free tool to use during times of stress whether it’s at work, in traffic or trying to fall asleep at night. Meditation can provide us with a way to feel connected to our truest self, making the rest of life a whole lot easier.

Bri Young is a holistic health coach and integrative nutrition coach at Statera Integrated Health and Wellness Solutions in Dubuque.

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