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10 Tips to Living a Happy and Healthy Life According to Registered Dietitian Nutritionists

Two girls enjoying LivBars at a picnic. Both girls are holding bars and are sitting on a blanket with a picnic basket behind them. It is a nice day with green grass and trees in the background.

Looking for ways to improve your health and happiness through food? For National Nutrition Month, LivBar, the leading ancient grain and seed nutrition bar, reached out to Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs) across the country to ask for their advice on how people can change their lives for the better in 2022. Here is the advice they gave:

1. Practice gratitude

A person holding up a sign that reads the word "grateful." The sign is blocking the persons face. The person is wearing an apron and is in the kitchen.

“Be grateful to connect and enjoy a meal together. Remember the company and the great food in your life that make it worth living.” - Lisa Jones, RDN, keynote speaker and contributing author of Communicating Nutrition: The Authoritative Guide

2. Have fun

A silhouette of three people with their arms up, most likely dancing. The background is a dark orange color.

“Recreation and play are not just for kids and research has shown that they positively impact overall health. Self care that includes taking time to engage in activities that bring joy can be an important addition to eating well, moving daily, and restorative rest.” - Wendy Bazilian, DrPH, MA, RDN, author of Eat Clean, Stay Lean and The SuperFoodsRx Diet

3. Listen to your body

A woman with glasses on looking up with her arms resting on her head. The camera is angled upward and the sun is behind her.

“Listen to your body, it knows best. Watch nature's patterns when considering your next step - nature never rushes. Find one thing to be grateful for every day.” - Lauren Morrison Burns, RDN

“Everyone is unique, especially when it comes to your gut! Take the time to listen to your body. Your body has so much to say, and when reconnecting with it, we can find clues on how to live our happiest and healthiest life.” - Amanda Sauceda, RDN, creator of The Mindful Gut™

“Take care of yourself, those around you, and the planet we call home.” - Manju Karkare, RDN

4. Let food support wellbeing

A heart shaped bowl is in center with blueberries, strawberries, and blackberries filling it. The background is light blue.

“Define, on paper or in some manner concretely, what health and happiness would look like for you. Take stock of your relationship with food and your life's priorities and think how food can help support an enhanced measure of being.” - Monica Auslander Moreno, MS, RDN, founder of Essence Nutrition

5. Remember to love yourself

A woman wearing a colorful dress has her arms wrapped around herself. Blurry in the foreground are a couple of plants.

“Eat when you're hungry and eat foods you enjoy. Move your body in a way that feels good to you. Remember you're deserving of love and compassion.” - Jen Haefele, RDN

6. Plant based is key

Close up of a person with hand tattoos cutting up veggies on a cutting board.

“Eat a more plant-based diet rich in a variety of whole plant foods and ingredients.” - Sharon Palmer, MSFS, RDN, The Plant-Powered Dietitian

7. Nourish yourself

A man bent over working in a garden. The plants are full grown and in planter boxes. The background is a wooden panel fence.

“Focus on eating food that truly nourishes you, get outside regularly to connect with nature and be present.” - Rima Kleiner, MS, RDN, LDN, founder of Smart Mouth Nutrition

8. Add, don’t restrict

A close up of a person with a cookbook in their lap. They are looking at a recipe.

I always tell people to think of the things they can add to their life rather than what they need or should eliminate. Add more fruits and vegetables rather than cutting out sugar. Including more plant-based proteins rather than focusing on eating less animal-based protein. And find a new thing to try, make, bake, or learn a new skill. Even if it isn't for a permanent change - trying something new is always on my list.” - Shelley Rael, MS, RDN

9. Enjoy life

An orange neon sign that hangs against a brick wall reads "eat what makes you happy."

“Eat the foods you enjoy. No need to cut out your cultural foods! Enjoy daily movement in any form, but [it] must be something that makes you feel better! Find time in the day for self care, whether it's reading, writing in your journal, listening to music or anything that is just for you. And get a good night's rest!” - Sarika Shah, RDN

10. Health over weight

A person is doing a cartwheel on the side walk. It is a bright day outside. There are cars parked on the street and a house.
“Focus on health rather than weight. Add more variety to your food choices. Move in some way each day- whether it's cleaning the bathroom, going to the beach with the kids, or a workout at the gym.” - Emily Oschmann, RDN, LDN, CDN

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