Eat, Move, Sleep: Physical Well-being

Eat, Move, Sleep: Physical Well-being

For more than 30 years, physical activity has been a main focus of worksite health promotion. Step challenges and on-site yoga have gone hand-in-hand with weight-loss initiatives. Together, they have been pretty standard when it comes to “wellness at work.”

With the evolution into total well-being, more employers are broadening their services into other important parts of their employees work-life balance. By studying 98 percent of the world’s population, Gallup leaving site icon has defined the common elements of well-being: physical, career, social, financial and community.

By Gallup’s definition, physical well-being means having good health and enough energy to do the things you need and want to do. What’s more, having adequate energy includes keeping an eye on what you eat, how you move, and how well you sleep.

What You Eat

Many believe in the Blue Zones leaving site icon philosophy to eat real food. Cooking a meal yourself is fun and a good family activity. It also helps you keep an eye on what you and your family are eating. Meals are meant to be enjoyed. When you cook meals yourself, you don’t have worry so much about what’s on the plate because you know what went in the pot.

How You Move

Not too long ago, research started coming out about the dangers of sitting all day. The news was and still is alarming since many, if not most, of us spend hours and hours sitting while we are at work. Now we know it’s important to find ways to insert natural movement back into our day – every day.

How Well You Sleep

Sleep is rejuvenation. It is vital for many areas of well-being. Our emotions, stress levels, mental stability are all affected by the amount of sleep we get and the quality of that sleep.

Sleep is also the time our body heals itself. Did you know your heart and blood vessels repair themselves while you sleep? Short-change yourself on sleep and your body pays a dangerous price. In fact, ongoing sleep deprivation is linked to several diseases – including diabetes, obesity, heart disease and stroke.

Sleep supports a healthy immune system, along with growth and development. Hormones released during deep sleep boost muscle mass and repair cells and tissues in children, teens and adults.

So how can you improve your sleep? For starters, prioritize sleep. Create a calm, soothing space for slumber. Develop a bedtime routine that includes quiet time, soothing music or reading. Avoid eating and drinking, staring at a screen leaving site icon and late-night exercise close to bedtime.

Be good to yourself. By eating healthy foods, moving your body more and making good sleep a priority, you nurture important aspects of your overall well-being.

Sources: What Wellbeing Means in the Coronavirus Era, leaving site icon Gallup, 2020; Live Longer, Better, leaving site icon Blue Zones, 2020; Blue Light Has a Dark Side, leaving site icon Harvard Health Publishing, Harvard Medical School, 2020.

Originally published 7/22/2016; Revised 2021

Anonymous