BMW (Body-Mind Wellness) Behavior & Attitude Assessment

DIRECTIONS: Before you begin, please print the BMW Behavior & Attitude “Scoring Worksheet” to record your responses.

This assessment is designed to help you evaluate your personal attitudes and behaviors that affect your overall Body-Mind Wellness. The assessment is divided into 4 parts:
Part 1: Nutrition & Eating Behaviors
Part 2: Body Acceptance & Non-Dieting Attitudes & Behaviors 
Part 3: Exercise & Physical Activity Behaviors
Part 4: Emotional & Mental Health Attitudes & Behaviors
Each of the 4 parts consists of a series of positive, healthy statements. On your “Scoring Worksheet,” please rate your level of agreement with each statement as follows:

always or almost always” (i.e. “I always do this or feel this way”) Worth 2 points

sometimes” (i.e. “I sometimes do this or feel this way”) Worth 1 point

rarely or never” ( i.e. “I rarely do this or feel this way”) Worth 0 points

When you’re done, please add up your total points for each part on your “Scoring Worksheet.”
The goal is to move towards the highest possible number of final points in each of the 4 parts. In other words, you’re trying to attain all the positive, healthy attitudes and behaviors listed in the assessment in order to attain optimal Body-Mind Wellness. By completing this assessment at the beginning and end of the semester, you can evaluate your personal progress towards this goal.
Keep in mind that lasting, meaningful changes take time! This semester will simply “jump-start” your journey toward optimal Body-Mind Wellness by giving you the education, support, and motivation to start making positive, healthy changes.
Disclaimer: This assessment was created by Sheri Barke, MPH, RD (Registered Dietitian) and Frances Willson, PhD (Clinical Psychologist) of the COC Student Health Center. It has not been scientifically validated and is only intended to be used for educational purposes.

Part 1. Nutrition & Eating Behaviors
  1. I eat at least 3 times every day to keep my body and mind well-fueled.
  2. I listen to my body and eat mostly to satisfy physical hunger. Rarely do I eat or keep eating for recreational or emotional reasons (i.e. eating when bored, sad, lonely, stressed, angry, just because food is there and it tastes good, etc.).
  3. My meals are generally well-balanced (i.e. each meal generally includes a vegetable/fruit + a grain/starch + a protein-rich food).
  4. I eat at least 2 different vegetables a day (totaling at least 2 cups).
  5. I eat at least 2 different fruits a day (totaling at least 2 cups).
    NOTE: No more than 1 cup of this comes from 100% fruit juice, unless I have very high energy needs and need the extra concentrated calories.
  6. I eat at least 3 ounces of 100% whole grains per day.
    NOTE: 1 oz. is about 1 slice of 100% whole wheat bread, ½-1 cup of 100% whole grain breakfast cereal, or ½ c. brown/wild rice, whole wheat pasta/cous cous, or cooked oats.
  7. I consume at least 3 servings of calcium-rich foods per day or take a calcium supplement to provide a total of 1000 mg calcium daily.
    NOTE: 1 serving provides about 300 mg calcium. Examples include…1 c. milk or fortified soy milk or OJ, 1 c. yogurt or pudding, 1.5 oz. cheese, 1.5 c. cottage cheese, frozen yogurt, or tofu, 1.5 c. bok choy or turnip greens, 3 c. broccoli, or 1 fortified bar, beverage, or cereal that provides ~30% DV calcium per serving.
  8. Most of the protein-rich foods that I choose are very low in saturated fats. Specifically, I choose…
    • Fat free or 1% low fat milk products (I limit whole fat cheese to < 1 oz. per day).
    • Skinless poultry and fish (I limit red meat - including beef, pork, and lamb - to < 3 meals total per week).
    • Tofu and other soy products, beans, nuts and nut butters.
  9. Most of the fat I consume comes from oily fish, nuts, avocados, and canola or olive oils (rich in monounsaturated or omega 3 fats). I limit solid fats like butter, margarine, shortening, lard, and partially hydrogenated oils (and foods that contain them) since these are high in saturated/trans fat.
  10. I limit sodium by avoiding the salt shaker, focusing on more fresh (as opposed to canned, boxed, frozen, or “fast” foods), and reading food labels.
  11. I am sensible with “fun foods & beverages” – I eat or drink no more than 1 small serving per day, if that. 
    NOTE: A “fun food or beverage” is something that tastes good but doesn’t deliver a lot of nutrients, just “empty calories.” Examples include sugary or greasy refined foods (candy, cookies, chips, French fries, sugary cereals/bars, frozen desserts) OR high calorie drinks (sodas, fruit punch, gourmet coffee/tea drinks, alcoholic beverages).
  12. I stay well-hydrated (urine is pale yellow like lemonade, not dark like apple juice) by drinking plenty of water.
  13. I am sensible with caffeine (no more than 100-300 mg a day, depending on personal tolerance).
    NOTE: 16 oz. Starbucks coffee = 300 mg, 1 NoDoz/Vivarin = 200 mg, 16 oz. Starbuck’s café latte/mocha/cappuccino/frappuccino/2 shots espresso = 130 -180 mg, 8 oz. coffee = 100 mg, 8 oz. Red Bull/“energy drink” = 80 mg, 8 oz. green/black tea = 40 mg, 12 oz. cola = 40 mg, 8 oz. hot chocolate = 10 mg.
  14. If I drink alcohol, I am sensible about it. Specifically, I drink no more than 1 drink per day (or occasion) for a woman; no more than 2 drinks per day (or occasion) for a man.
    NOTE: 1 drink = 12 oz. beer, 5 oz. wine, or 1.5 oz. shot hard liquor
  15. I take one daily multiple vitamin/mineral supplement per day (or regularly consume fortified food/beverage products as part of my balanced eating plan).
    NOTE: If I’m a man or post-menopausal women, I choose a supplement without iron or no more than 10 mg iron. If I am a pre-menopausal woman, I choose a supplement with 100% DV iron (18 mg).
Part 2. Body Acceptance & Non-Dieting Attitudes & Behaviors
  1. I pay attention to my body and my appearance, but these thoughts only occupy a small part of my day. I am not overly preoccupied with my body weight, shape, or appearance.
  2. I value being healthy and fit at every shape and size, rather than being thin or muscular at any cost. The health and strength of my body are more important to me than how much I weigh or what my body fat percentage is.
  3. I challenge unrealistic body ideals in the media and strive for my personal best based on my genetic body type. I am realistic with my goals for my body.
  4. I trust that my weight will settle into the right number for me when I focus on eating well, staying active, and taking care of myself.
  5. I realize that it’s normal for weight to fluctuate 1-2 lbs. from day to day or from week to week due to normal fluid shifts, so these minor weight fluctuations don’t affect my eating or exercise patterns or my mood.
  6. I weigh or measure my body no more than once or twice a week, if at all.
  7. I realize that weight and body composition say very little about my health status without taking into consideration my lifestyle behaviors (i.e. eating and activity patterns, use of tobacco, alcohol, and other drugs, etc.) and metabolic indicators of fitness (i.e. resting heart rate, blood pressure, blood lipids, blood glucose levels, etc.).
  8. My self-image is based on who I am (my personality traits, achievements, and relationships), not just on what I look like (my body image).
  9. I avoid engaging in negative “food-body talk” with my friends, co-workers, and family members since I realize this hurts me as well as the people around me.
    NOTE: Negative “food-body talk” includes statements such as “I’m so fat,” “My body is so disgusting,” “I was so bad today by eating chocolate,” “Do you know how many calories/fat grams are in that?” “I lost/gained this much weight today,” etc.
  10. I avoid restrictive diets that exclude my favorite foods, forbid entire food groups, and/or rigidly dictate what and how much I’m allowed to eat regardless of my tastes and hunger level.
  11. I avoid “body shaping” dietary supplements and drugs that may harm my physical and mental health (e.g. stimulants, laxatives, diuretics, pro-hormones, steroids, most “fat burners,” and many “muscle builders,” etc.).
  12. If I eat more than I really need, or I overindulge in “fun foods” (foods that give my taste buds pleasure, but deliver little nutrition), I don’t feel extreme guilt or panic and I don’t engage in punishing behaviors to try to get rid of it (like purging, starvation, or exhaustive exercise).
  13. If I exercise less than usual, I don’t feel extreme guilt or panic and I don’t engage in punishing behaviors to try to make up for it (like restricting my food allowance or doing even more exercise later for longer and/or harder).
Part 3: Exercise & Physical Activity Behaviors
  1. Most days of the week, I accumulate at least 30-60 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity.
    NOTE: This includes both purposeful exercise (jogging, swimming, cycling, weight lifting, fitness class, dance class, sports, etc.) and/or lifestyle activities (like walking around campus, doing physical labor at work or home, playing actively with children, taking the stairs instead of the elevator, etc.)
  2. Most weeks, I participate in continuous cardiovascular exercises (brisk walking, jogging, swimming, cycling, dancing, basketball, racquetball, etc.) for 20-60 minutes per session, 3-5 days per week.
  3. I avoid over-use injuries by never doing continuous cardio exercises for longer than 1 hour per session and never doing cardio more than once a day or more than 6 days a week.
    NOTE: Endurance athletes may have to train for longer than 60 minutes per session or more than one cardio session per day for their sport, but they are at increased risk for over-use injuries and must still take at least one day off per week for complete rest.
  4. Most weeks, I participate in resistance/strength training workouts (i.e. weight lifting, body sculpting class, push ups/sit ups at home, yoga, pilates, etc.) 2-3 days per week.
  5. I avoid overtraining my muscles by separating resistance/strength training workouts (of the same muscle group) by at least 48 hours.
  6. Most weeks, I participate in flexibility/stretching exercises at least 3 days per week.
  7. To avoid injury, I stretch to a point of mild discomfort, but not pain.
  8. I choose physical activities that feel good to my body and that I enjoy doing. I don’t choose activities purely for their calorie-burning effect.
  9. I listen to my body by adjusting my exercise frequency, duration, and intensity when my body tells me I need to slow down or rest more (i.e. when I’m sick, injured, tired, stressed, etc.).
  10. I limit TV watching to no more than 2 hours per day.
Part 4: Emotional & Mental Health Attitudes & Behaviors
  1. Most of the time, I get 7-9 hours of restful sleep a night to repair and recover from daily physical and emotional stresses. I begin each new day feeling refreshed and renewed.
  2. I never use tobacco or (non-prescribed) drugs that hurt my physical and mental health.
  3. Most days, I spend at least 10-15 minutes outside during daylight hours to get some safe, mood-boosting sun exposure (weather permitting, of course).
    NOTE: In the absence of sunlight, too much serotonin (a “feel good” brain chemical) is converted to melatonin, which may contribute to a depressed mood. But, if you’ll be in the sun longer than 10-15 minutes, be sure to apply sunscreen.
  4. I regularly participate in some form of self-relaxation or self-reflection activity (meditation, prayer, journaling, massage, counseling, etc.) to help calm my body/mind and process my feelings.
  5. I have interests that I get involved in and enjoy, such as music, books, movies, and social events.
  6. I am able to communicate my feelings/wants to others in a way that is assertive, but not hostile, to them. Specifically, I use ‘I’ messages rather than ‘you’ messages. For example: “I was disappointed when you didn’t call. If you’re not sure you’re going to be able to call, please tell me and I’ll understand.”
  7. I regularly engage in positive “self-talk” which improves my confidence, self-esteem, and mood. For example, I tell myself “I can do this, I can cope with this set back, I am a likeable person, I have something to contribute here.”
  8. I am involved in meaningful, enjoyable, and supportive relationships (with family, friends, romantic partners, etc.). I feel socially connected to other people in the world around me.
  9. I generally feel safe in my world, and I don’t expect to be harmed or injured either emotionally or physically.
  10. I would describe myself as a happy person. I certainly am sad or depressed at times, but most of the time, I am happy/content.
  11. I am ‘realistically’ optimistic and expect most things will turn out O.K. I usually see the positive side of what life hands me.
  12. I feel calm and relaxed and am almost always worry free.
  13. I am confident. I believe I have the ability, judgment, and resources to make good decisions and succeed in life.
  14. I feel worthy and expect to be treated fairly and with respect.
  15. I am able to concentrate and focus when I need to.
  16. Except for responding to extreme events, my moods remain steady.