By Mike Robinson
As a Harlemite, you may love the city’s high-energy environment, the great job opportunities, access to some of the best restaurants in the country, exceptional culture and more. Harlem, for example, is home to the famous Dinosaur BBQ restaurant as well as the Apollo Theater and other hot spots that you may frequent regularly. However, as much as you may love living in the city, a considerable drawback may be the impact city life can have on your health. Whether you are concerned about your weight, your stress level or other aspects of your health, there are a few steps that you can take to improve your health and well-being.
Get More Exercise
Many Harlemites regularly use the subway, taxis and buses to get around town. They often have sedentary jobs, and they may spend a considerable amount of time relaxing at home after work. This type of lifestyle provides you with minimal exercise each day. There are various strategies you can talk to work more physical activity into your day, such as taking the stairs over the elevator, walking to work and other destinations, and taking an evening walk rather than watching TV. You can also join a gym for more pronounced physical activity. On the weekends, head to the park for outdoor recreation to enjoy even more activity.
Get a Good Night’s Sleep
New York City is known as the city that never sleeps, and newcomers to the area often complain about how noisy the city is. Even those who have lived in the city for years, however, may have trouble sleeping because of the noise. Lack of sleep can lead to weight gain, increased stress levels, poor mood and a wide range of other issues that you may need to deal with. In general, if you are not waking up feeling rested, you are not getting enough sleep. Consider using blackout curtains and white noise machines to create an environment that fosters a good night’s sleep. You also may need to get in the habit of going to bed earlier so that you have enough hours of rest each night.
Make Better Meal Decisions
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If you are like most Harlemites, you likely enjoy at least one or two meals out of your house each day. You can always pack a lunch to enjoy at work, but you may still have trouble finding healthy meal options at restaurants. First, consider visiting healthy restaurants in Harlem, such as Healthier Choices, Dig Inn or Azuri Café. Then, pay attention to how meals are prepared. Avoid fried foods and foods drenched in sauces. Choose fresh vegetables over French fries and mac and cheese. Opt for water or unsweet tea rather than soda.
Improving your level of health and well-being in the city is not always easy to do. Initially, it may require you to consciously make healthy decisions in all aspects of your life. Over time, however, these can become permanent lifestyle changes that require no thought or effort.
Any choices in Harlem you have?