A: Barry, sounds like you’re ready to make changes — that’s a big first step. The next step? We think you’ll have good luck making things stick if you have fun while pursuing new experiences, and you’ll be surprised at how that changes your outlook and your health!
First, find a buddy who wants to join you in your pursuit of new experiences and better health: Hardly anyone (including the two of us) can sustain important changes by him- or herself. But if you can’t recruit a buddy right away, get started by yourself. Sign up your pal later, after setting an example.
New tastes: Discovering new flavors is a major step toward a healthier diet (that works best for long-term, permanent weight loss). Fatty, sweet, processed foods dull your taste buds and make you crave more of those same old, same old. Just what you want to stop doing!
You can learn to enjoy new foods (look, I’m eating an artichoke!) one adventurous bite at a time. Try a new food experience at least once a week.
New activities: Enjoy activities that you haven’t tried before. Go to Sharecare.com and build a walking program! If you’re already a walker, sign up for ballroom dancing lessons, snow-shoeing treks or a new gym (you’ll meet new people there, too).
New sights: Discovering new sights brings new energy to your life. Try a photo field-trip of local architecture or explore a museum. Traveling to another city could be part of this adventure.
And remember, as you pursue your goal of new experiences and better health, there’s pleasure in the journey and building shared memories with a buddy.
Dr. Mehmet Oz is host of “The Dr. Oz Show,” and Dr. Michael Roizen is chief medical officer at the Cleveland Clinic Wellness Institute.