Heart-Healthy New Year’s Resolutions
5…4…3…2…1…It's time for healthy and happy New Year’s resolutions.
If you make the right New Year’s resolution this year, you’ll improve your heart health. Make resolutions you can stick to that will really make a difference. Heart disease and stroke are among the top killers of Americans. You can reduce your risk for a heart-related illness by making changes to your lifestyle and sticking with them.
Quit smoking: Within one year of quitting, your risk for heart problems related to smoking will be 50% lower. There are no good reasons to keep smoking, so make this the year you stick with quitting.
Eat right: A diet rich in fruit, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, and low-fat dairy will make you look and feel better. Cut out the sugars, salts, and fat, but not the flavor by using spices and herbs to make your meals delicious.
Exercise: Starting a work-out routine can be daunting. Start simple by taking a walk each day. Park at the back of the lot, take the stairs, and walk around the office to communicate with co-workers. You’ll feel the difference with these small changes. Work your way up to biking, dancing, playing sports, swimming, or any other exercise for at least 30 minutes a day.
Manage your weight: Diet and exercise are the best ways to manage your weight. Be sure to set manageable health goals with your doctor.
De-stress: Relaxing can often be easier said than done. Make it a priority by working down time into your schedule and sticking to it. Read a book, watch the sunset, or listen to your favorite music in a comfortable chair to take a break from the stress of work, family, finances, and life.
Be informed: Get your cholesterol and blood pressure levels checked regularly. Also update your family medical history so you can get screened for any potential health problems.
Visit our online health library to learn more about heart healthy exercise, nutrition, and family risk factors. If you have any questions or need help finding a physician, call our free Consult-A-Nurse® service at 1-800-447-8206.
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