1. It’s easy being green — Whether you are a vegetarian, vegan, carnivore or pescetarian, vegetables should be a central part of your diet. Often referred to as a “protective food,” dark green foods provide essential vitamins and nutrients to your body that protect you from many of life’s worst diseases.
The Food and Drug Administration recommends three to five servings a day for pristine health. This is not as hard to accomplish as it sounds. Examples of one serving include: two broccoli spears, three tablespoons of green beans or three sticks of celery.
2. Get on your feet — If you’re a biker or a swimmer, you may need to add an additional element to your workout regime. Dr. Warren Levy, Ph. D., of Unigene Laboratories reminds people that, “when it comes to the risk of thinning bones, it’s the weight bearing nature of exercise that signals bones to create more mass. Without such stress, bones do not get stronger, and become more prone to injury.”
There is still a lot to learn about bone health, but in the meantime, it is important for both men and women to partake in exercises that get you up on your feet. This is a fact. If you are a biker or a swimmer, squeeze in some walking or a run a couple of times a week.
3. Brush your teeth — We are all aware of the cosmetic benefits of keeping those pearly whites, well, pearly, but there are additional benefits hidden between the bristles of your brush.
Brushing and flossing your teeth not only prevents tooth decay, but it prevents gum disease, which has been linked to heart attacks and strokes. Healthy gums are one more way to keep that heart pumping strong.
4. Hear ye, hear ye — Pick up your local newspaper once in a while. There is more information out there than you can imagine. Sift through the bounty of news because when it comes to your health and healthcare, no one is more responsible for their management than you are.
Instead of following what your office mate or carpool buddy says, take the time to understand the healthcare debate and arm yourself with knowledge. A good place to start? www.whitehouse.gov/issues/health-care
5.Be a small fry — Don’t try to deny it. Everyone has something they can’t get enough of. Whether it’s ice cream, cheddar cheese or dinner out, take the opportunity to start the new decade off with a little less on your plate.
You don’t have to deprive yourself, just regulate. By ordering small fries from McDonald’s versus large, you save yourself from 270 calories and too much artery-clogging grease, but are still left with the sweet nectar of a delicious fried food.
6. Give yourself a break — Not only are vacations an important part of maintaining your sanity, but there are many other positives about sneaking away for a week or two. Studies have proven that employees come back to work post-vacation more creative and productive.
7. Scrub a dub dub — The easiest way to avoid infectious diseases such as a common cold, or the H1N1 virus, is by hand washing. According to the Mayo Clinic, it is important to lather up and wash for at least 20 seconds, but don’t use antibacterial products. Antibacterial soap is no more effective at killing germs than regular soap. Even worse, using antibacterial soap may even lead to the development of bacteria that are resistant to the product’s antimicrobial agents — making it harder to kill these germs in the future.
8. Lend a hand — A study at Vanderbilt University found that volunteer work was good for both mental and physical health. People of all ages who volunteered were happier and experienced better physical health and less depression. Other studies have found the volunteering has even helped alleviate chronic pain. Not to mention the benefits of volunteering to society.
Think about something you like to do in your spare time anyways — running, cooking, shopping — and there will be an easy way to incorporate volunteering into your lifestyle. Visit www.volunteermatch.org to find an appropriate match.
9. Treat yourself! — It’s just as important to help yourself, as it is to help others. Think about something you have always wanted and start the decade off with a plan in mind to have it in your grasp before year’s end. Whether It’s a nice bottle of wine, a new suit or a fresh hairdo, rewarding yourself with a treat shouldn’t be just for little kids.
10. Start with a clean state — Finally, position yourself to be on the upward climb at the beginning of the new decade. Rather than thinking about mishaps of the past 10 years, focus on your goals for the next 10. — Newswise