HOBBIES ARE GOOD FOR YOUR HEALTH

Do you have a hobby? Hobbies can give meaning and purpose to your life in retirement. As Robert Putnam points out in his book, Bowling Alone, it’s easy to discount the importance of hobbies and social engagements. Putnam details the widespread decline in civic engagement, from PTA memberships to neighborhood potlucks and bowling leagues. Over a couple of generations, Americans have misplaced the concept of free time.

SPECIAL PLANS FOR YOUR SPECIAL PEOPLE

Lily is a beautiful, active and full of personality toddler who happens to have Down syndrome. Lily’s parents and I have been friends for years and I have the continuing pleasure of watching Lily and her siblings grow up. While Lily is becoming a physical therapy rock star and hitting all her milestones in a timely fashion, her parents have started planning for the future.

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WHY WE ENJOY OUR HOBBIES

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines a hobby as “a pursuit outside one’s regular occupation, engaged in especially for relaxation.” Hobbies include anything from playing a musical instrument to gardening, bird watching or sewing. A hobby is a way of focusing on something you enjoy just for the sake of that enjoyment. It may also be a way to clear your mental palette. You could be stressed out by a situation at work or the challenges of raising children and need an escape.

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STEPS TO LOSE WEIGHT AND KEEP IT OFF

Jenny Craig is yet another program that supplies the food and advocates use of a counselor for support. The South Beach Diet includes different four- week plans on a keto diet.


When selecting a diet program, the idea is to switch your meals to incorporate more healthy foods and portion your meals to limit you to a lower calorie count. Most effective weight-loss programs incorporate suggestions to modify lifestyle as well.


Some steps to lose weight include:


JEAN JEFFERS




Jean is an RN and a freelance writer. She is a staff writer for Living Well 60 Plus and Health & Wellness magazines. Her Web site is at

www.normajean.naiwe.com

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says 70 percent of U.S. adults are overweight or obese. According to people who have successfully maintained weight loss, creating a plan to modify eating habits and to increase activity, especially walking, is necessary. The National Institutes of Health says to reach and stay at a healthy weight over the long term, the focus must be on overall health and lifestyle habits as well as what you eat.


To lose weight and keep it off, you need to follow a program of physical activity and adjust your diet to reduce calories. When reducing your calorie count, the key is to eat healthy foods. Choose vegetables, fruits, whole grains, high-fiber foods and lean sources of protein, such as fish. Limit foods high in saturated and trans fats and foods with added sugar and sodium.


See a dietitian or nutritionist for help in designing a personalized plan and to answer your questions if you need more guidance and motivation. Some individuals benefit from a weight-loss program such as Weight Watchers (now WW), a point-based program scientifically proven to help change eating behaviors. Another popular weight- loss program is Nutri System, which supplies all the food, is easy to follow and produces good results. Noom is another popular, safe and effective weight-loss program. It uses psychology to help you build new eating and exercise habits.