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While we promote wellness every day in our clinics, classrooms and research, it is also critically important for our own team members. We can only care for others well if we also tend to our own well-being.

Our department wellness team plans regular wellness-focused events and compiles tips and resources around topics including nutrition, mental health, exercise, battling burnout and much more.

Wellness Tips

Each week, our wellness team publishes tips and resources in our department's weekly newsletter, distributed to faculty and staff. You can view previously published tips below.

  • My Health Rewards

    My Health Rewards

    It's 2023! As we all become accustomed to writing and typing "23" instead of "22," the wellness team wants you to take steps towards a healthier new year.

    The team urges everyone to participate in Employee Wellness by signing up for My Health Rewards. My Health Rewards Benefits include:

    • Up to $350 for healthy behaviors throughout the year if you are an employee enrolled in a 2022 medical plan
    • Discounted fitness trackers and other discounted wellness products, like juicers, steamers, smart scales and fitness equipment
    • Points for steps and exercise tracked through the My Health Rewards mobile app
    • Up to 15 points per week for completing a daily UAB Healthcheck-- mandated for all campus employees
  • Changing Habits

    Changing Habits

    This is a list of tools, courtesy Gretchen Rubin and our Wellness Team, to help you change your habits for good:

    • Create "SMART" goals: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time structured
      • Creating small, attainable goals allows you to celebrate modest progress at each interval
      • Set goals that can be prioritized and measured by impact. Your best chances of adhering to a new habit or achieving a goal involves rewarding progress positively impacting your lifestyle, like weight loss, meditation or exercise. This way, your goals don't become overwhelming or lost in follow-through
    • Don't Break the Chain: Try to maintain your streak. Keep in mind, what one does most days matters more than what one does once in a while
    • Track Your Total/ Number Trackers: People like to keep logs of their steps, minutes and more; it is a way to give ourselves credit.
      People are more likely to manage what they monitor
    • Journals/ One-Sentence Journals: Sometimes, when folks are incorporating a new habit, they want to record the details of their journey.
      • Regardless of how easy or difficult their experience, journaling gives people a moment to mindfully reflect on their habit.
      • It's an effective in assessing how much has changed since you began your journey!
    • Photo Log: Create a visual record over time! It's also a great way to help you keep your streak!
    • Accountability Partners: Notifying a friend, family member, coach, group or social media helps you stay accountable.
      • Make the goal fun to increase your chances of adhering to it
    • Notifications: Use notifications on your phone to remind you to follow a habit. This also keeps your habit in the forefront of your mind
      Reinforce: Reward yourself for the small milestones and try to be patient-- slow and steady wins the race!
  • Mindful Eating

    Mindful Eating

    Now halfway through January, you may still be re-evaluating some of your wellness routines, including healthful eating and that includes considering the setting of your meals.

    Are you usually doing something else while eating, like reading e-mails, charting, shopping online or talking on the phone? It may seem efficient, but these habits could be preventing you from reaching your health goals.

    Distracted eating can cause a disconnect with your hunger and satiety cues, which can prevent you from feeling satisfied. Conversely, mindful eating is shown to lead to greater psychological wellbeing and body satisfaction!

    A realistic goal to jumpstart new, healthier eating habits is to eat one meal a day mindfully.

    Check out these tips to get you started:

    Eliminate all screens and distractions from the environment and focus on what's on your plate. Creating a peaceful environment facilitates food enjoyment.
    Check in with your emotions. When you sit down to a meal, take a moment to register how you're feeling-- are you anxious, angry, stressed? Take a minute to reset before you eat.
    Slow down your eating. Aim to spend at least 15 minutes to eat your meal. This allows your body to tune into satiety cues. Try putting your utensil down between bites, or eating with your non-dominant hand to slow your pace.
    Engage your senses. Appreciate the smells, flavors, and textures of the food you eat, and appreciate its nourishing properties.

    For more information and/ or support, visit these helpful sites-- Wiley Online Library, ScienceDirect, Savor-- and/ or touch base with one of our friendly FCM dieticians!

Meet the Wellness Team

Halie Biggs

Halie Biggs

Program Manager

Caroline Cohen, Ph.D., R.D., L.D.

Caroline Cohen, Ph.D., R.D., L.D.

Clinical Dietitian

Kala Dixon, Ph.D.

Kala Dixon, Ph.D.

Director, Office of Interprofessional and Continuing Education