Your perception matters more than you think.
Plus: Surgeon General says social media is hurting our kids.
"Believe you can, and you're halfway there." - Theodore Roosevelt
The Daily Tonic is a two to five-minute read sharing science-backed health news and tips, all while getting you to crack a smile or even lol on occasion.
Wednesday. The dreaded day has finally arrived. Netflix announced that it’s cracking down on password sharing in the U.S., meaning you can no longer mooch off your friend’s Netflix account for free. Don’t worry, though — the Daily Tonic will always be free. So share this email with all your friends that are about to lose access to your Netflix account. That’s a pretty good consolation prize if you ask me. Plus, they can read about how powerful your mindset can be when adopting a new healthy habit. Let’s dive in.
Mindset Makes A Difference
We’ve all been there — we start a new workout plan or diet, and from the start, we aren’t entirely sure how things are going to work out. Is this going to work? Am I actually going to feel better? Will I be able to stick to the plan? Well, recent research now suggests that our outlook and mindset when adopting a new habit might be just as important as the habit itself.
In a recent study, researchers delved into the effects of individuals perceiving difficulties in maintaining healthy behaviors. Participants, all adults, were equipped with step counters to monitor their physical activity. Researchers then split everyone into two groups: one had watches that artificially inflated their step counts, and the other was equipped with counters that significantly underestimated their steps.
You would assume that the actual amount of physical activity would directly impact the participants' outcomes, but that wasn’t exactly the case. Despite the deliberately faulty step counters, individuals who believed they had taken more steps experienced a tangible boost in self-esteem, mood, and overall well-being. Not only that, but they also exhibited improved dietary habits.
On the other hand, those who perceived a lower step count reported diminished self-esteem, negative mood states, elevated heart rate and blood pressure, and poorer eating habits. This connection between the mind and body underscores the importance of psychological factors in shaping health outcomes.
The implications of this study are profound, highlighting the significance of confidence and resilience as potent tools for enhancing one's health. It is important to note that the "low step count" participants actually engaged in the same level of physical activity as their counterparts with higher step counts. However, their beliefs regarding their performance influenced their motivation and self-perception and ultimately impacted their overall well-being in detrimental ways.
For anyone striving to lead a healthier lifestyle, shifting the focus away from unattainable notions of perfection is crucial. Rather than fixating on arbitrary numerical goals like the number on the scale or a specific pants size, it can be more useful to redirect some of that attention toward cultivating small, sustainable habits that contribute to personal growth.
The key takeaway? In a world where diet and fitness culture is often viewed as all or nothing, we could all use a fundamental mindset shift — instead of striving for 100% adherence each week, we should all aim for consistency. That might look different for everyone, and that is ok. The key is to adopt healthy habits that we can feel confident about and never aim so high that we feel like we are falling short of our own expectations.
As long as you are doing something to improve your health and you genuinely feel like you are making progress, then that progress will manifest itself in all sorts of positive ways. Stay positive — that is the key.
Together with OLLY
Try OLLY Kids Multi!
Complete multi with a blend of Vitamins A, C, D, E, Bs & Zinc - It's a win win. This bite-sized multi is packed with all the good stuff kiddos need in a delicious gummy they'll actually enjoy, plus a boost of the good guy bacteria to help little bodies thrive.
The Surgeon General Says No More TikTok
In a bold public statement, U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek H. Murthy shed light on the alarming risks that social media poses to young people's mental health. With nearly every teenager in America using social media, Murthy emphasized the lack of sufficient evidence to deem it safe for them, stating that they have unwittingly become participants in a long-term experiment.
The report focuses on social media's positive and negative impacts on teens and children, along with the associated health risks. It identifies two categories of dangers: content-related issues like negative self-image and bullying and use-related problems such as sleep disturbances and addiction.
The statistics paint a grim picture of America's youth grappling with a mental health crisis. Clinical depression among teens and young adults doubled from 2011 to 2021. The CDC also found that nearly a quarter of teenage girls had made a suicide plan in 2021. Experts don’t think it is a coincidence that these trends align with the rise of social media over the same time frame.
As researchers continue their quest for answers, some lawmakers are taking proactive steps to limit teens' social media usage. Utah recently became the first state to impose a curfew on social media apps for teens and require parents to have access to their children's accounts. Other states are considering similar measures.
In the face of this complex issue, raising awareness, promoting healthy habits, and maintaining an open dialogue is essential. By acknowledging the potential risks and benefits of social media, we can take the first step toward helping our kids manage these apps in the digital age we live in today.
Looking for a delicious alternative to the traditional BLT? Here is a turkey bacon spinach wrap perfect for a little Memorial Day Weekend outing with the family. Read more.
Bring this Greek salad to any social outings you have coming up this weekend. Read more.
How was today's newsletter?