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New Year, Better Health


Mihailo K/Bigstock.com

The start of a new year may have you resolving to make positive changes to your lifestyle. The first step toward change is awareness and once you are aware of behaviors that can have a big impact, you’re on the road to success. Try following these four simple tips to improve your health this year.

Get Moving. There is good reason why doctors say “sitting is the new smoking.” Being sedentary can increase the risk of certain cancers and cardiovascular diseases and even contribute to anxiety and depression. To reduce those dangers, try to exercise 3-4 times each week. Additionally, incorporate small changes into your routine such as parking at the far end of the lot, taking the stairs instead of the elevator, standing while talking on the phone, taking a walk during lunch breaks and investing in a stand-up desk.

Get Enough Sleep. How much sleep are you getting each night? If you are not getting at least 7 hours, you may be setting yourself up for a host of problems. Lack of sleep not only leaves you feeling fatigued but it can lead to depression, weight gain, high blood pressure and heart disease. To improve the quality of your sleep, go to bed at the same time every night. Be sure to avoid caffeinated drinks after 3:00 in the afternoon. And lastly, limit screen time in the hour leading up to bedtime.

Eat More Fruits and Vegetables. Make a point to increase the amount of healthy fruits and vegetables in your diet. Fresh produce is ideal, but frozen and canned offer a convenient and cost effective alternative. Replace as much of the processed foods in your meal with fruits and vegetables and your body will thank you!

Stay Hydrated. Drinking water is essential to staying healthy. Every cell, tissue and organ in your body depends on water to survive and work correctly. Your body uses water to maintain its temperature, lubricate joints, allow for proper circulation and remove waste. To maintain good health, the average person needs to get 30–50 ounces of water per day.

Remember that even small changes can yield results. By incorporating these tips into your everyday routine, you can improve your health for the long term.

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