Have you ever wondered what it really takes to get healthy and feel amazing?

There are so many diet books out there telling you what to eat and magazines telling you to “Do this and you’ll look 10 years younger” or “Do that and you’ll experience rocket fuel energy.” With so much information, it can be overwhelming and confusing to separate fact from fad.

During my studies at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, through my own life experience, and through my coaching, I’ve discovered that our health isn’t just about what we eat. It’s about so much more than that. It’s about how our body works as a whole. It’s about how our lifestyle impacts our health. It’s about our quality of living. How happy are you? How well-rounded is your life? What’s falling off the metaphorical plate?

I want to take a minute today to break down for you really simply what it takes to look good, feel great, and get to a place of optimal health.

Here are the top 5 things you need to know and do to kickstart your health and feel amazing:

  1. Commit to your success. So often, we have surface reasons for why we want to get healthy. We say, “I want to lose those last 10 lbs. so I can look good at my reunion,” when, in reality, it goes much deeper than that. You have to figure out what’s motivating you and what will keep you motivated as you create new healthy habits.
  2. Discover which foods fuel you. There is no one diet that works for everyone. You have to take the time to figure out which foods work for your unique body. This means looking for food allergies, intolerances, and sensitivities, then adjusting your diet to accommodate for these things.
  3. Practice self-care. I don’t know anyone who couldn’t use a little more time for themselves. In this busy world we live in, it’s hard to get a moment to relax. It seems like the more time passes, the more we have on our plates, the more things accumulate on our to do lists. Taking time for yourself – to just rest and BE – is super important in becoming a healthier, happier person.
  4. Exercise regularly. This is something that’s talked about a lot but is often put on the back burner. You need to take time to move your body – but that doesn’t mean that you have to go to the gym. Figure out what works best for YOU. Do you enjoy dancing? Outdoor activities? Sports? Fitness classes? Find an activity that works for you, and stick with it. Your body will love you for it.
  5. Get your body back in balance. With the amount of toxicity in our environments and processed foods in our diets, it’s easy for our bodies to get out of whack. If you find yourself tired often or easily gaining weight, this is usually due to blood sugar imbalances. Learning how to bring your blood sugar back into balance so your body can optimize the sugars you’re consuming is something you’ve really gotta know in order to be the healthiest version of yourself.

These are just a few of the components of living a healthy life, but they’re up there on the list of the best things you can do for yourself and your health.