Because we spend more than nine hours a day at work, on average, (excluding long commutes), it’s crucial to adopt new strategies to reduce stress and keep the mind thriving. Here are three health changes can improve your wellness at work and really make a difference in your week.

Start Mornings With a Smoothie

That first sip of coffee can never come quick enough as you try to read the first email of the day. You might as well be trying to make sense of hieroglyphics. Once you guzzle cup of joe number one, the eyelids open a little wider and words start to form sentences that make sense when read from left to right. Although coffee is known to lower risks of depression and prevent disease, the addictive beverage can also cause heart irregularities, anxiety and insomnia. Replace the black caffeinated morning starter with fresh green juice or green smoothies.

photo by joyosity

Juicing is blending fresh, organic vegetables and fruits into an energizing and rejuvenating breakfast beverage. Rather than superficially awakening the body with creamer, caffeine, artificial sweeteners or sugar, you’ll fuel up with nutrients and vitamins. Mind Body Green encourages clean eating with a green smoothie because it supercharges the body with essential minerals, antioxidants and fiber, which hydrates the body and aids digestion. Nourish your body at the start of each day, and you’ll naturally activate your mind and boost your body into work mode.

Breathe Mindfully

As long as we’re alive and our heart’s beating, we’re breathing. Among email chains, client meetings and project proposals, who thinks about breathing deeply and acknowledging each inhale and exhale? ”Paying attention to your breathing is one of the fastest ways to become calm, centered, and energized,” notes MindBodyGreen.com. Your breathing becomes shallow and choppy during stressful and anxious moments. Recognize when you’re feeling edgy and commit to mindful inhaling and exhaling. Breathing “fully, deeply and slowly” — when your stomach expands and your lungs contract — creates mental composure and reinvigorating energy. If even for a moment, you’ll achieve a sense of balance, which can help release tension and obtain mental clarity for that next task.

If you don’t trust yourself to engage in conscious breathing when you need it most, download the Breathe & Relax 2.0 app onto your iPhone. Set up your app so that you receive breathing reminders throughout the day. During a breathing break, you can lessen constricted breathing by focusing on basic breath awareness as well as deep, pleasure and belly breathing. Once you get used to this tool, you’ll look forward to meditative breathing as a pleasurable break to refocus and feel relaxed.

Snack on Avocado

To cure those mid-morning hunger pangs or 2:30 p.m. afternoon blues, reach for an avocado. Los Angeles nutritionist Jonny Bowden, author of “Living Low Carb: Controlled-Carbohydrate Eating for Long Term Weight Loss,” told Forbes.com the avocado is “the unsung hero of snack kingdom,” The tasty green fruit has nine to 11 grams of fiber, which means it’s a creamy, fat-burning treat. You’ll also nourish your body with an array of vitamins and antioxidants. If scooping avocado out of its skin doesn’t sound appealing, top an avocado half with tuna, lemon and sunflower seeds or scoop sliced veggies into homemade guacamole made with diced tomatoes, onions and fresh cilantro. Maximize your snack break by stepping away from your desk. Catch up on social media on your new Blackberry 10 or use this as an opportunity to practice your breathing using the Breath & Relax iPhone app.

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