Healthy New Year’s Resolutions – Here Are 7 Great Suggestions
It’s 2014 – Happy New Year from the Keenan Blog! This is a great time of year to use as a “spring board” for making healthy lifestyle changes. If you are out of ideas, we have provided 7 great suggestions for healthy New Year’s Resolutions to help promote a new you!
- Quit Smoking – There is no single lifestyle decision an individual can make to promote their own health that even comes close to quitting smoking. Your first step in quitting smoking should be to get support in going tobacco free by utilizing Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT). Individuals who utilize Nicotine Replacement Therapy (gum, lozenges, and patches) are twice as likely to succeed in quitting smoking. For tips on how to quit smoking, please visit the American Cancer Society’s website at www.cancer.org.
- Reach a Healthy BMI – The recommended healthy BMI (Body Mass Index), which is based on your height and weight, is below 25. Always remember that healthy, sustainable weight loss usually happens at about ½ -2 lbs per week.
- Increase Cardiovascular Activity – American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) recommends at least 150 minutes of cardiovascular activity per week (30 minutes of combined activity at least 5 days per week). Cardiovascular activity helps maintain a healthy weight, promotes a healthy heart, increases HDL (the “good” cholesterol, and is a great stress relieving technique.
- Consume more Fruits and Vegetables – The latest dietary guidelines call for anywhere between 4.5-13 servings of fruits and vegetables a day depending on calorie consumption. Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables can help you ward off heart disease and stroke, control blood pressure, prevent some types of cancer, and guard against cataract and macular degeneration which are two common causes of vision loss.
- Use Effective Stress Relieving Techniques – 77% of people in the US report having physical symptoms as the result of stress. These symptoms range from weight issues to high blood pressure. There are some basic ways you can actively relieve stress, such as: exercising regularly, getting at least 8 hours of sleep each night, eating a balanced diet, limiting alcohol intake, using breathing techniques, and finding support.
- Drink Plenty of Fluids – The Institute of Medicine recommends general daily fluid intake of 91 ounces for women (11 cups) and 125 ounces (15 cups) for men. Please keep in mind that this is a general fluid intake which encompasses all fluids ingested on a daily basis. A majority of this fluid intake should be water. To help increase water intake drink a glass before and a glass right after meal consumption.
- Get Adequate Sleep – It is recommended that the average adult get 7-9 hours of sleep per night. If you are having trouble achieving that amount of sleep, try cutting back on caffeine after lunch, turn off electronics one hour before bed, and participate in regular physical activity.