The month of January rushed in, thrusting 2023 into full swing. For many, this first month of the new year prompts renewed focus on health. Impractical and unattainable New Year resolutions aside, here are four straightforward ways to help stay fit in the new year:
- See your doctor – this is one of the most important steps to physical wellbeing. A licensed health professional performs many tasks to help patients. They will review your medical history, provide physical evaluations, diagnose illnesses or injuries, administer treatment, counsel patients, and offer sound advice on a plethora of health topics. Not only are they fountains of medical knowledge, but they can set patients up for achieving individualized health success.
- Watch for added salt and sugar – Too often what we eat, especially processed foods, contain large quantities of salt and sugar. Per the FDA, a whopping ninety percent of American adults are eating more sodium than is recommended. This is contributing to high blood pressure and other medical conditions. The CDC points out that Americans are also eating and drinking too many added sugars which are contributing to problems such as weight gain, obesity, and heart disease. Understand suitable amount for your body and stay within those guidelines. Read food labels and limit your intake of added salt and sugar as needed to maximize your health benefits.
- Sleep well – Getting a good night’s sleep is very important to one’s overall health and performance. Per NIH News in Health, good sleep improves brain performance, mood, and health. On the flip side, not getting enough regular quality sleep raises the risk of some diseases and disorders, ranging from heart disease and stroke to obesity and dementia. People who get adequate rest tend to be sick less often, are more likely to maintain a healthy weight, and are able to think more clearly, as examples of positive benefits. Thus, it’s important to talk to your doctor if you are lacking adequate sleep each night.
- Exercise – Bodies are meant for motion, and regular physical exercise is key to good health. Being physically active can strengthen bones and muscles, help manage weight, reduces risk of disease, boosts energy, and lowers stress levels. To learn which exercises are best for your body type, age, and physical conditions, talk to your doctor. Brain exercises should also be part of one’s overall wellness plan. Activities like doing puzzles, problem solving, reading, doing math, playing games and so forth challenge the brain to increase processing speed and improve memory.
These are four examples of ways in which better health can be enjoyed and achieved in the new year. Other common-sense approaches, such as not smoking, limiting alcohol, and eating a healthful diet abundant in nutritious fruit and vegetables, are other healthy lifestyle changes we can wisely incorporate into our routines to benefit our bodies as we grow and mature.