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There’s nothing like living in New York, but it can also take a toll on your well-being. The Shops at Columbus Circle understands — and is here to help with 360 Wellness, a four-month program starting in June with free events focusing on movement, beauty, food, and fashion. To get you inspired, we caught up with one of New York’s top wellness experts: Lisa Hayim, founder of The Well Necessities Nutrition. Hayim has mastered the skills to live a healthy life and shares some of that goodness here.

Why does movement matter?

Exercise has been positioned as this thing “we have to do” for so long that it has become a chore for many people. In reality, exercise is the key for allowing us to live out our greater purpose. In the short term, it stimulates the production of endorphins in the brain, making it good for mental health. It improves flexibility and helps us release toxins. The important part is to find what works and feels good and to also value rest or days with less intensity to reset your stress hormones and give your body time to repair.

Your mantra is “Eat Real and Be Mindful.” What is “eating real” and how can we incorporate it easily into our lives?

Eating real refers to eating foods that are nutritionally intact — before man, technology, and factories get in the way. While it applies to most foods that don’t come in a package, there are some packaged foods that are still “real,” like quinoa or brown rice. The best way to incorporate it into your life: Eat one-ingredient foods, avoid artificial colors and preservatives, and don’t add sugar and flavoring.

You say that “being mindful” refers to the importance of listening to your body and responding to what it asks for. What if my body is asking for wine and fries?

It may surprise you, but I am A-OK with that. While most people think of hunger as needing food for energy, there are other reasons we eat: emotions, stress, boredom, procrastination. So if a client is about to dive deep into fries and wine, I want them to pause and ask, “What am I really hungry for?” Sometimes the answer is “fries and wine,” while other times it’s something like loneliness. At that point, calling a friend may be a better idea.

Can you talk about your Easy Recipes (never more than 5 ingredients)?

When I was getting started in the kitchen, my biggest obstacle was recipes that called for 15+ ingredients. It wasn’t a joyful experience — it was stressful! So I decided if I was going to create recipes for my clients and readers, I would make sure they were easy. I streamline them — keeping to five or less ingredients — because that’s really all it takes to create a delicious meal.

How can we stay healthy this summer?

No drastic changes — that means no restrictions or over exercising just to look good in a bikini. And drink more water. It’s also a perfect time for making water tastier and more nutritious — add in lime, lemon, or even antioxidant-packed berries.

Any other advice?

Life’s too short to stress and obsess about food and exercise. When you learn what feels good for you, you can lean into that. For most of my clients, having greens daily is just as important as having a glass of wine and fries when that desire hits. I believe true wellness goes beyond nutrition or exercise — it extends into what we put on our body and our skin, how we talk to ourselves and others, and even how we vote with our dollar.


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