Many people find themselves thinking about bettering their physical health and well-being at the start of the new year. These resolutions can sometimes seem like they are unachievable, and it can be hard to decide where to start, and a new health journey can easily become discouraging and overwhelming. One thing to remember is that change doesn’t happen all at once. There are many small steps we can start to take to better our health that provide long-lasting benefits. Some good health habits may be even easier to implement than you think. Below, we will discuss some realistic New Year’s Resolutions when it comes to empowering ourselves and taking control of our health. Let’s focus on ideas as simple as scheduling yearly wellness exams and prioritizing everyday health habits.
Resolution #1: Get up to date on vaccines. During cold and flu season, germs can spread like wildfire. Stay up to date on recommended vaccines such as the Covid vaccine and the Flu vaccine. Talk with your healthcare provider to see what other vaccines may be recommended specifically for your needs.
Resolution #2: Stay active. The CDC recommends adults get 150 minutes (about 2 and a half hours) of moderate-intensity physical activity a week. This is not as much as it sounds like and can be accomplished by 30-minute brisk-paced walks 5 days a week. Exercise not only improves physical health but also mood, energy levels, sleep quality and mental well-being.
Resolution #3: Get an annual wellness exam. It is important to review your health concerns and current medications with a healthcare provider to ensure you are currently receiving the proper care for your body. At a wellness exam, any concerns can be discussed with a provider in addition to lifestyle and family history. Wellness exams can also include bloodwork or imaging to screen for certain health concerns. Make a list of questions to ask your provider, so nothing is missed at the appointment!
Resolution #4: Go to scheduled health screenings. This may seem redundant after a wellness exam, but certain screenings may require additional appointments. And not all medical offices are equipped to do in-house testing. Some health concerns to get screened for are certain types of cancer, high blood pressure or cholesterol, diabetes, osteoporosis, and mental health conditions. Diseases are better treated when detected early. Health screenings can identify if you are at risk or already have a disease you are unaware of. Early detection and treatment of diseases reduce risk factors and result in better health outcomes. Getting recommended health screenings is an uncomplicated way to protect future health.
Resolution #5: Drink more water. Our bodies are made up mostly of water, so it is no surprise that it is vital to our health. Water is essential for joint movement, kidney function, skin health, and other bodily functions. Some people may find it hard to drink water. Try carrying a water bottle and drinking from it throughout the day when bored. It is much more beneficial than reaching for a more sugary option. Getting in the habit of drinking water can also help with weight loss.
Resolution #6: Get More Sleep. Sleep is crucial for mental and physical wellbeing. Reduced sleep can result in mood swings, poor focus, and more susceptibility to illness. While it is recommended that adults get 7 hours of sleep each night, the quality of sleep is just as important as the amount of sleep. Try to fall asleep and wake up around the same time each day and focus on creating a comfortable environment to improve sleep. Maintaining a low light level and banning screentime before bed may seem difficult at first, but it will help enhance sleep therefore improving overall health.
Resolution #7: Eat more vegetables. Diets typically focus on foods you should cut out or avoid. It may be easier to find healthier options when adding something to your diet instead of taking it away. Vegetables are versatile and there are plenty of options to choose from. Vegetables can even be blended into delicious sauces that make it seem like you are not even eating something “healthy.” This makes them a great option to incorporate into snacks or meals any time of day.
Resolution #8: Spend time with loved ones. While focusing on diet and exercise are important to health, it is also important to spend time with the people you care about. It is important to have a support group and maintain social interaction to increase well-being and happiness while staving off feelings of loneliness.
As we enter the new year with a positive mindset, try implementing some of these resolutions to improve both mental and physical health as well as overall happiness. And remember that we are here to help you in any way we can on your wellness journey.
To schedule a wellness visit or vaccination appointment, call us today at 330-270-3660.