What on earth is obesogenics? You may have heard some statistics saying that where you live impacts your health. Minnesota is actually the third healthiest state in the US! Obesogenics takes it one step further. According to Merriam-Webster online, obesogenics produce obesity. For example, you could have an obesogenic environment. Today’s article will identify WHERE you can improve your health by eliminating an obesogenic environment.
I have recently become infatuated with the concepts described by eating behaviorist Brian Wansink, who explores mindless ways to eat healthier. These mindless ways include small changes to where food is placed in your kitchen, or what items are easily accessible from your desk.
Here are some initial questions for your health checklist to get you started with examining how healthy your environment is. Take out a pen, and answer the two important questions below.
1. Do you struggle?
Is your environment setting you up for success? By environment, I mean anywhere you spend a significant amount of time. Here are some common problems and solutions.
- Access to Office Goodies: The hungrier I get, the more likely I will eat those office goodies. The way I handle that is I make sure these goodies are out of sight (and out of mind), and I keep a drawer of healthier options like nuts, Kind bars, cheese sticks or fruit.
- Being your Kid’s Garbage Disposal: Who hasn’t finished the uneaten food on their kid’s plate? Set yourself up for success by boxing any leftover food as soon as your kid is done. Then, leave the kitchen or dining area.
- Serving Family-Style Dinners: Having a big bowl or plate of food on the table encourages you to have seconds, and maybe thirds. Instead, serve smaller portions directly onto your plate. Drink a full glass of water before getting up for a second plate.
- Fighting Bad Weather: I live in a cold and snowy state, which makes it hard to enjoy outdoor exercise at least half of the year. It also makes it less likely that I will get in my car and drive down to the gym. Stocking my basement with exercise tools like a jump rope, hula hoop and some free weights ensures I have no excuses. Go here for cheap ways to set up a home gym (that cost less than a gym membership!)
2. Do feel the most energized?
Anyone can feel good about an exercise plan, at least for the first month. But, what happens after that first month? If you are not connected with your environment, you will not return. Below are some ways to ensure that you stay energized.
- Connect with your Instructor: Fitness classes can energize me, but only when I connect to the instructor. I have met fantastic instructors who put the “P” in passion. Stay tuned to my blog next month for guest posts by fitness professionals in Minnesota. Perhaps you will find your passion with them!
- Keep your Equipment within Sight: Maybe you feel most energized while you are in the comfort of your home and by yourself. If so, then get your home gym or exercise videos lined up and within easy eyesight. Don’t tuck anything away in an inconspicuous place. Keep it out front!
- Sitting in an Office: If you are in corporate America, ask for a standing desk, treadmill desk, or suggest a walking meeting instead of the usual conference room meeting. Energy does not come in a bottle. It comes from movement.
- Special Note for Entrepreneurs: As an entrepreneur with many entrepreneur friends, I know that the day can be full of travel. It is hard to feel energized when shuttling from one event or meeting to another, especially if you are an introvert. I feel energized while in a room full of people, but most energized when I can have one-on-one time and move freely amongst different groups. Find events that offer opportunities to be your best.
So far, we have talked about WHAT, WHEN and WHERE. Our final installment in the Health Checklist series will be WHO.
Photo credit: www.minnesota-visitor.com