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The 4 Pillars of Health

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We believe there are four main elements, or pillars, that contribute to overall wellness: Nutrition, Exercise, Sleep, and Stress Management. Balancing these four elements will help you achieve optimal health. Note that balance is an important and sometimes overlooked aspect of this approach. Someone might focus too much on exercise while eating poorly, or undo other efforts by failing to get enough sleep. Lack of balance can lead to unhealthy situations, and so can trying to do too much. It’s always important to think about your health goals and realize our limits as humans. Let’s take a closer look at these pillars.

Nutrition – Research keeps finding more connections among the gut, the brain, and the rest of the body. A healthy, well-balanced diet not only gives us energy, but it also helps to improve our mood. Tip: focus on veggies, fruits, nuts/seeds, lean protein and healthy oils (such as olive oil, coconut oil, avocado oil or even Omega 3 supplements).

Exercise– Working out is another great way to elevate your mood. You’ll also increase your energy and, according to scientists, improve neuroplasticity, which is the development of new neurons and connections in your brain. Some studies have even suggested that physical exercise can delay the onset of Alzheimer’s Disease. Tip: aim for 30 minutes of movement 5 days a week. Cardio, strength training and stretching are all important for optimal health.

Sleep – Getting sufficient sleep is critical for balancing hormones, many of which help you maintain a healthy weight. Sleep is a foundational function that helps you stay present and alert throughout the day. Tip: try and get a minimum of 7 hours per night. If you find that falling sleeping is difficult for you, consider turning off all electronics 2 hours before you go to bed, keep dinner on the light side and keep your bedroom dark and cool (68 to 72 degrees – whatever feels right to you).

Stress Management – Allow yourself time to unwind and break away from stress, life and rituals on a daily basis. You can clear your mind by connecting with friends and family, journaling, reading, creating art, or even by simply going for a walk. Tip: explore activities that provide the opportunity for your mind to relax.

This is a preview of our Pinnacle Health Management Wellness Program toolkit. Employers can obtain our Wellness Program as an add-on, which includes quarterly wellness challenges, wellness toolkits and other educational resources, newsletters on popular health topics, and customized reports at the end of all wellness challenges. If you’d like more information, contact us at 866.930.7264 or at quotes@pinnaclehealthmanagement.com.