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How to Keep You and Your Family on Track in 2018

By Sandy Schroeder

Everybody talks about resolutions, but finding good ones that actually become healthy family habits can be tricky.

As we roll back into our regular schedules, Harvard Health’s Clare McCarthy, MD, recommends three simple steps to bring families together and make them healthier.

Exercise as a family – Adults need 150 minutes of moderate activity or 75 minutes of vigorous activity each week. Kids need to be active an hour a day. Families can make that fitness a reality with regular walks around the neighborhood with the dog, or weekend biking, skating, sledding, and shooting hoops. Or you might sign up for community classes to learn a new sport.  If the weather is hopeless, turn on the music and dance or exercise indoors. Post a calendar and put family fitness times on it.

Cook up some great family suppers - Getting kids to help with the baking or cooking, and shutting down electronics, can go a long way to making evening meals a whole new experience. Making the effort to add more fruits and vegetables, and subtract sodas and juices, works too. Try baking with fruits for dessert, making zucchini bread or apricot tarts. Shred or chop onions, peppers, and carrots and mix them into soups, meatloaves, and casseroles. Keep looking for more healthy recipes that your family may enjoy.

Create more family connections – Think about what your family enjoys most, and then look for more ways to spend time together. Reserving every Saturday for a special outing, movies or hiking, and setting aside Sunday afternoons for biking and ice cream could be a good start. Taking classes together, volunteering in the community, or starting new projects at home can all work to expand family time.

Share a special time each day – Sometimes exercise and family dinners can be hard to pull together as work and schedules get in the way, but doing a “family huddle” every day could be a good way to keep everybody in touch. A little family time could be reserved for after dinner, or later as a quiet time before bedtime for reading and talking. As kids come to depend on this time, you may find they are eager to share their day, looking for answers to daily problems, or just want to hear their favorite stories read one more time.

Every family is different. Finding the best family connections at your house may take awhile, but be well worth the effort.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Atlanta, Ga.

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