We are healthy
Make a difference where you...
- Turn off the TV and play outside.
- Keep fruit, vegetables, nuts and other healthy snacks readily available in your home. Make the healthy choice the easy choice. Texas A&M Ag Extension has some great ideas.
- Shop at a farmers market and check out grocery services that deliver fresh and locally produced food to your home or workplace. Supporting local agriculture puts money into the local economy, cuts pollution, and is healthier.
- Be aware of signs of depression and mental illness in yourself and members of your family. The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) has good resources and Austin Travis County Integral Care provides services.
- Drive less; walk more. Take the bus, bike or walk to your destinations. Visit the Movability Austin website for more ideas.
- Ditch soft drinks, sweets and chips. High calorie foods with little or no nutritional value should not be welcome in your home.
- Drink water. Zero calories and so necessary for a healthy body.
- Limit TV and video games and take a walk, ride a bike, or play outside.
- Make healthy choices at restaurants. Order water instead of sodas and split a meal to save money and unnecessary calories.
- Make meal preparation a family affair. Your children can learn important lessons when they are involved in shopping, preparing and selecting meals. Invite them to select a healthy “Recipe of the Week.” HEB has a free catalogue of "Healthier Cooking" recipes.
- Grow food or herbs in a container or in a garden. Children enjoy eating what they grow. Visit the Texas A & M AgriLife Extension "Central Texas Horticulture" page. Another resource for home gardening tips was sent by wecanatx.org visitor (and Janelle's granddaughter) Lauren. Check out homeadvisor.com/r/home-gardening-guide-for-your-family/ (Thanks, Lauren!).
- Get moving. Regular, daily exercise is important for all ages and will not only make you feel and look better, but will improve your overall health and mental health.
- Take care of your physical, dental and mental health. All are related and all are important.
- Be trained in Mental Health First Aid. Know how to respond to a mental health emergency.
- Volunteer to help plant and care for a garden at your neighborhood school. These resources can help: Let's Move Gardening Guide and Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service.
- Ask for Mental Health First Aid and crisis management classes for parents, teachers, staff, and students on the importance of good mental health, tools for identifying risk factors, suggestions of how to discuss mental health issues, and resources for access to mental health care in the community.
- Walk or ride a bike to school.
- Celebrate Energy Awareness month in March by highlighting energy conservation tips in the classroom. The Department of Energy has lesson plans for K-12.
- Avoid driving your children or yourself to school. Take the bus, walk, or ride a bike.
- Promote healthy snacks at your school. Provide healthy ideas for birthdays and other celebrations. List only healthy items on the class party sign-up sheet. The Center for Science in the Public Interest offers a resource for Healthy School Celebrations.
- Promote walkability and biking to school. These resources can help: Walk Bike To School, Partnership for a Walkable America, Bicycle Austin, and The Austin Yellow Bike Project.
- Pack a healthy snack and lunch for work. You’ll save money and time and eat healthier.
- Have a walking meeting and get your blood and creative ideas flowing.
- Start an on-site yoga class or exercise program with co-workers.
- Be active at work. Bike, walk or take the bus to work and to appointments. Skip the elevator and take the stairs. Consider a stand up desk or replace your chair with a stability ball. Schedule a walk and talk meeting with a co-worker. It’s a great way to wake up the brain and to get creative ideas flowing.
- Bring healthy treats to meetings such as fresh fruit, nut or veggies and humus. These resources can help: The American Cancer Society "Meeting Well" tool for Planning Healthy Meetings and Events and the National Institute on Aging Go4Life® Everyday Fitness Ideas.
- Bring a refillable water container to work and stay hydrated.
- Learn what other workplaces are doing. Visit the Mayor’s Health and Fitness Council website to find out what other employers are doing to promote a healthier workplace.
- Reduce the stigma. Let employees and colleagues know that mental health treatment is now included in all health insurance plans. Encourage your Human Resources Department to highlight these changes.
- Start exercise, health and wellness classes at work. Ask your employer to allow space for exercise classes, nutrition classes, or brown-bag luncheons on health and mental health topics.
- Provide healthy snacks for meetings such as fresh fruit, nut or veggies and humus. These resources can help: The American Cancer Society "Meeting Well" tool for Planning Healthy Meetings and Events and the National Institute on Aging Go4Life® Everyday Fitness Ideas.
- Open your facility for exercise and other health and wellness classes.
- Train staff and volunteers in Mental Health First Aid and crisis management.
- Use your space to create a healthier community. Plant a community garden and provide space for low-cost exercise or wellness programs.
- Seek out active volunteer activities, such as community gardening, community walks, or repairing houses.
- Provide crisis management and mental health first aid training for members of your place of worship, service organization or non-profit. Learn to identify people in times of crisis and help them navigate the path to accessible care.