The new year is a great time to take a step back, reassess and make improvements in your life. It’s a time of celebration and renewal. You can do small things that will dramatically improve your health and quality of life.
If you don’t exercise, consider starting!
Regular exercise lowers blood pressure, improves depression symptoms, helps you sleep, improves heart health and whittles your waist line. Waist size can predict heart attacks better than BMI, especially in women. If you’re a woman with a waist larger than 35” or a man with a waist bigger than 40”, you are at a higher risk for type 2 diabetes and heart disease according to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.
If you smoke, please stop.
Cigarette smoking causes lung cancer, and other diseases of the lung like COPD, chronic bronchitis and emphysema. Smokers are more likely to die from COPD than non smokers. If you have asthma, smoking can cause an attack. Smoking also damages the people around you. Family exposed to cigarette smoke can develop lung disease including cancer.
Putting a small amount away each month really adds up. It’s good for your wallet, well being and financial future. Have a fixed amount taken directly out of your account into savings. Not having to “touch” it, makes it easier to save. Having a little bit of money in the bank can help you sleep well at night!
Lack of sleep accounts for car accidents, workplace accidents, fatigue, weight gain or weight loss. It can also effect the brain. Sleep deprivation causes cognitive dysfunction. Turn off the tv or computer one hour before bed, limit alcohol and caffeine, drop the temperature a few degrees and curl up for a restful night’s sleep. Melatonin can help you fall asleep. 3mg will help dramatically for most people.
Improve your diet.
Try to limit processed foods, sugar, sodium, deli meats and cheese. If you stay on the perimeter of the grocery store, you’re usually in pretty safe territory. Fresh fruits, veggies, eggs, raw nuts, and lean meats can be found here.
Limit alcohol consumption.
Try to limit yourself to 3 drinks a week. Any more and you undo the good that alcohol can do. Red wine contains resveratrol which helps with aging and longevity.
Get your flu shot.
Over 80,000 people died last year from the flu and its complications.
Staying positive can do wonders! Be nice, smile, help others when you’re able and enjoy life. You only get one so make it really count.
The awesome docs at I & O Medical Centers have got your back. We’re here when you need to feel better fast!