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Prisma Health offers health and wellness tips for new year

Monday, January 10, 2022

GREENVILLE, S.C.—As 2022 opens, Prisma Health offers a variety of health tips for the community to keep in mind as potential goals for the new year. With so many lifestyle changes taking place over the past two years that have disrupted “normal” routines, Prisma Health encourages the community to find new ways to prioritize personal health and wellness.

“The beginning of a new year is a good time to take stock again of your health and wellness habits,” said Jeremy Byrd, MD, with Prisma Health Primary Care in Fountain Inn. “We encourage individuals to establish new routines that incorporate healthy habits into their daily lives. Increased exercise, healthier diet choices and prioritizing mental health can all help improve overall health and help prevent disease.”

  • Start small. Find five minutes a day to keep your goals achievable, especially if you’re haven’t been exercising in the past year. You could increase five minutes per week until you achieve the daily goal of 30 to 45 minutes.
  • For extra support, find a friend you can exercise with or experiment with healthier recipes as a fun family activity.
  • Find quiet time to meditate, pray or take a walk. This has been shown to have positive health benefits.

Gabriella Ode, MD, with Prisma Health Orthopedics, offers these tips for physical activity.

  • Introduce new and different exercises to keep your fitness routines fresh and avoid overuse injuries.
  • Monitor changes in your heart rate as you increase workout frequency.
  • Soreness in the hours after exercise can be normal; however, sharp or throbbing pain means you should stop that specific exercise. If you feel a “pop” during exercise and aren’t able to bear weight through your limb, seek medical attention immediately.

For more exercise information, visit Prisma Health’s Flourish blog, which has advice on everything from keeping those exercise resolutions to training in cold weather to exercise and weight loss.

Lindsay Kirkland, a registered dietitian with the Prisma Health Weight Management Institute, offers these tips for helpful changes to your diet.

  • Eat when you’re hungry and stop when you’re satisfied. Slow down eating to recognize fullness when it hits.
  • Each day aim for 4-5 cups of fruit and veggies, 9-12 ounces of protein and 2 cups of low-fat dairy.
  • Drink at least half your body weight in ounces of plain water per day. Eliminate sugary drinks and limit coffee, tea or other caffeinated drinks to 16 ounces per day.

Flourish also has blogs about healthy eating, including this one with 11 tips for healthier eating.

Mental health is also important. Geoff Williams, director of Prisma Health’s behavioral health outpatient services in the Midlands, suggests that people incorporate deliberate “Me Time” as part of an ongoing coping strategy. “Include yourself when considering all the things you need to do and are responsible for,” he said. “Cliché as it is, you can’t take care of others unless you take care of yourself – which means you need leisure, time to reflect and activity that nourishes your inner self.”

  • Celebrate small victories, as this helps improve motivation for change.
  • Assess and (as needed) cut down on drinking alcohol. With things being so out of the norm over the last few years, it would be easy for alcohol consumption to increase without noticing. Alcohol becomes problematic with it goes above recommended guidelines of one to two drinks a day.
  • Physical activity is a great way to take care of your mental health since what’s good for the heart is good for the brain. Consult your doctor before starting, and take it slow to have the best chance for sticking with it.

In addition to focusing on physical, mental health and dietary changes, committing to healthy sleep habits is also important. Prisma Health recommends trying to get at least seven hours of sleep each night.

About Prisma Health

Prisma Health is a not-for-profit health company and the largest healthcare system in South Carolina. With nearly 30,000 team members, 18 acute and specialty hospitals, 2,947 beds and more than 300 outpatient sites with nearly 2,000 physicians, Prisma Health serves more than 1.2 million unique patients annually in its 21-county market area that covers 50% of South Carolina. Prisma Health’s goal is to improve the health of all South Carolinians by enhancing clinical quality, the patient experience and access to affordable care, as well as conducting clinical research and training the next generation of medical professionals. Visit PrismaHealth.org for more information.

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