Enjoy a More Healthful Summer Break

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Quincy L. Cheek

Summertime is here and kids in Central Louisiana are sure to be enjoying the break from school and rigorous schedules.  Summer is a time for family vacations, rest, and fun in the sun.  We don’t even have to worry about school for at least a couple of months, but don’t let the welcome break get you off track with your healthy habits!  Here are a few tips to keep you healthy and happy this summer:

  • Continue to get 6 to 8 hours of sleep per night to promote renewal, well-being and mental health. 
  • 3,500 calories equal 1 pound.  Fight weight gain during summer break by balancing calories consumed with walking, swimming, hiking, or riding bikes.
  • For youth, 60 minutes of daily physical activity is the minimum requirement for a healthy body.  Adults should aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity most (5 to 6) days of the week.  Keep in mind that if you are trying to lose weight or maintain weight loss – you will need to be active at least 60 to 90 minutes most days of the week. 
  • The best beverage for hydration on hot, summer days is, without a doubt – water!  Drink plenty of water this summer and avoid sugary sodas and sports drinks when you get hot & thirsty.
  • Make healthy choices when it comes to summer snacking – nosh on edamame or almonds for a filling snack instead of chips.  Choose sorbet, a fruit-flavored ice treat that is cool and refreshing and low in fat instead of ice cream.  Have fresh fruit prepped and ready for a cool & quick healthful snack. 

 

Remember, you deserve a break from all of the stresses of school, work, and everything else life throws at you, but your health and well-being should remain top priority – even when you’re trying to “chill out”.  Don’t throw in the “healthy living towel” this summer.  Use this time to rejuvenate and fine-tune your health and wellness strategies!