Health and nutrition are huge trending topics in 2020. This is fantastic news, however, some of the information out there can seem a little…extreme.

You don’t need a warrior-like diet, magical detox potions, or a personal trainer just to get healthier. In fact, it can be as easy as enjoying the things that you do now, just in a more mindful and moderate manner. 

After all, enjoyment may be the important, and all too often forgotten, part of a healthy lifestyle. 

Let’s take a look at three things we enjoy; bread, beer, and coffee. 

OMG CARBS. Yes, bread can be unhealthy for those who suffer from celiac disease or other wheat sensitivities. But, for the majority of the population, whole grains can be part of a healthy diet. A massive meta-analysis in 2016 showed that whole grains can protect us from heart disease, cancer, and almost all other natural causes of death. This doesn’t mean you should go binge eat an entire loaf, but the science is very clear; whole grains are part of a healthy diet.

Tall and Black. Coffee has had its share of bad press since the 1970s. However, in a systematic look at the coffee consumption of over 1.2 million people by the American Heart Association, the data shows moderate coffee drinkers (3-5 cups per day) had the lowest risk of heart-related problems. There is also evidence that the almighty beans can lower the risk of stroke. 

The (occasional) beer. It’s no secret that drinking alcohol in excess is not healthy. Studies from around the world have produced mixed results on moderate drinking, but a meta-analysis out of Harvard found that “moderate drinkers” had a 25 to 40 percent reduction in risk of heart-related problems compared with those who never drank. To be fair, there are conflicting studies to this, but the idea that you can never enjoy a beer or wine with dinner is simply scientifically unfounded. 

The point is that, for some of us, these “vices” make us happy. And although the link between happiness and health is still unclear, you don’t need scientific studies to realize that happiness is worth pursuing. 

So, meet that friend for coffee (or a beer) and take a bite out of that freshly baked (whole grain) loaf. 

Happiness and enjoyment may be just what the doctor ordered. 

Know someone who likes coffee or bread? I think we all know someone who likes beer. Share this with them!