After the big question is popped and loving partners decide to spend their lives together as a married couple, a whirlwind of activity will ensue. Although wedding planning is exciting, some couples may feel overwhelmed with all the decisions that need to be made before they can tie the knot. In this state of increased pressure, stress may build and health could falter. According to a Cornell University study, more than 70 percent of brides-to-be have weight loss on the brain, but shedding pounds shouldn't be the only health factor to consider. Here are some easy ways to stay mentally and physically fit in advance of a happy wedding day.
• Get daily exercise. Exercise is important for maintaining a healthy body weight and keeping stress levels in check. Exercise also can boost mood. The Department of Health and Human Services recommends getting at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity each week. Strength training exercises performed at least twice a week complete a well-balanced exercise regimen.
• Slow down and relax. Those who go full-throttle with all of their responsibilities — including wedding planning — may burn out. Stress can weaken the immune system and make people vulnerable to illness. Schedule some time for date nights with your fiancé, and don't overlook the benefits of hanging out with friends and getting away from wedding planning for a bit.
• Eat body-boosting foods. The foods we eat can impact everything from energy levels to skin radiance. Foods like berries, sweet potatoes, broccoli, greens, green tea, and dark chocolate all contain antioxidants that boost the immune system, states The Food Network. Avoid drastic diets that can do more harm than good. Simply cutting 500 calories a day can help the average person lose a pound per week if weight loss is a goal. Simple ways to trim calories are to choose skim milk over whole milk and choose low-calorie snacks.
• Cut down on alcohol consumption. Toasting to the future with a glass of wine may become rote in the months leading up to the wedding, but alcohol is a diuretic and a source of liquid calories. Alcoholic beverages dehydrate the body and cause it to hold onto water. When imbibing, stick to low-calorie cocktails like a vodka spritzer (60 to 80 calories) instead of a calorie-laden frozen margarita (300 calories).
Feeling and looking one's best starts long before the wedding day. By making health a priority, couples can start their new lives together on healthy footing.