ResolutionsHave you already given up on your resolutions for 2024?

There is good news and bad news when it comes to New Year’s resolutions. The good news? More than half of all New Year’s resolutions are health-related. The bad news? By February, as many as 80% of all people have already failed to keep their resolutions, and only 8% of people stick with them for the entire year.

There are a few different reasons that people don’t keep resolutions. One thing to keep in mind is that all change is best when you break it down into baby steps. If you try to cut all sugar and carbs “cold turkey” when you are used to having dessert and wine every night, it’s going to be a hard resolution to keep. Likewise, you may find it difficult to exercise daily when you are used to being totally sedentary.

If your resolution was related in any to getting healthier (eating better, drinking more water, exercising more, sleeping better), it’s important to note that most health-related habits are intertwined. If you eat better, you will sleep better. If you eat well and exercise more, you will tend to drink more water. If you drink more water, you will tend to eat better.

You may be wondering why, as a chiropractor, I care about diet. The reality is that there are several things in your diet that actually can cause inflammation. As we seek to reduce inflammation through chiropractic care, it makes sense that we focus on the diet as part of that overall care.

With that in mind, here are some basic rules for eating better:

Don’t drink calories

Soda and many fruit juices contain high-fructose corn syrup. While it’s true that fructose is a naturally occurring sugar that you find in fruit, if we have too much of it, our bodies cannot process it correctly. Fructose is processed by the liver, which turns it into either glucose or stored fat, resulting in toxic levels of inflammation in your body.

You may also find that the more you drink beverages with a high sugar content, the less you will drink water.

Most importantly, drinking calories is not satisfying. When we chew, several things happen which begin digestion and help us to feel more full. We can’t get that feeling of satiety from drinks, and even so-called “healthy” drinks, tend to have a much higher calorie content than real, unprocessed foods.

Minimize your intake of wheat and processed grains in your diet

Many recent studies indicate that refined grains lead to inflammation. As you digest grains, your body converts them to sugar, and, as we mentioned in the first point, the body’s method of processing sugar can cause inflammation.

Avoid artificial sweeteners

Artificial sweeteners are an attempt to trick your brain into thinking that you are eating sugar. The end result? They wreak havoc on your blood sugar levels (which, yes, causes inflammation), can cause gastric distress, and can result in weight gain instead of weight loss.

Avoid highly processed foods

Foods containing 5 or more ingredients are considered highly processed. These foods tend to be more calorie-dense (they have more calories in less food), and are higher in fat (particularly saturated fats, salt, and sugar.

By focusing on shifting your diet over time to cut back and ultimately eliminate these inflammation-causing foods and additives, you are shifting what your body gets used to. Just like water may not taste good when you are drinking soda all of the time, your body may crave processed foods instead of vegetables when you are eating those all of the time. 

It’s not too late to pick up on healthy habits, and make 2024 the year of change!

About Keystone Chiropractic

As an engineer, Dr. Schurger looks at the whole body as a system to determine what is best for each patient. He performs custom spinal imaging for each patient in order to create a custom correction. Dr. Schurger has transformed himself through the ketogenic diet. As part of his practice, he offers nutritional advice to help patients improve their overall health (weight loss being a side effect). His practice, Keystone Chiropractic, focuses on upper cervical chiropractic care, and is located at 450 S. Durkin Drive, Ste. B, Springfield. Call 217-698-7900 to set up a complimentary consultation to see if he can help you!