Five Tips for a Healthy New Year

veggie_heart As the feeling of newness to the year starts to fade, so too does our motivation to maintain those New Year’s resolutions you made a month ago. Sometimes we need some ideas to keep us working towards those aspirations, so we’ve compiled a list of 5 quick tips to stay healthy this year.

1. Drink Plenty of Water

Water is essential to the body, but we often take it for granted. The American diet replaces water with sugary beverages and caffeinated drinks that actually remove water from your body rather than adding to it. Drinking water is the best way to restore lost hydration, and plays a crucial role in removing excess fat and toxins from your body. Experts recommend between 2-3 liters of water daily.

2. Try A Second Lunch

Some experts recommend eating an extra meal in the mid-afternoon to keep up energy levels and decrease appetite during the evening hours. This allows your body to fully digest your food before bed and will help reduce cravings during the day.

3. Get 8 Hours of Sleep

Many studies show that your body needs at least 8 hours of sleep each night. Getting a full night’s will make you feel more energized and may decrease the risk of certain chronic diseases.

4. Avoid Vitamins & Enriched Foods

Vitamins and minerals are extremely important to the human diet, however many of us still believe that supplements will do the trick. Recent studies show proof of the contrary: vitamins and mineral supplements are only beneficial to a point, and the advantages aren’t clear. Experts recommend eating a healthy, nutrient rich diet and supplementing nutrients contained in foods you can’t eat. Dietitian Karen Ansel sums it up nicely: “Food contains thousands of phytochemicals, fiber, and more that work together to promote good health that cannot be duplicated with a pill or a cocktail of supplements.”

5. If You Smoke Cigarettes, Quit

Smoking cigarettes has been proven in study after study to lead to a plethora of nasty diseases, cancers, and deficiencies that no one should have to live with. It also effects those around you – second hand smoke is not filtered and lingers in clothing and upholstery, causing a health hazard to everyone around you. If you have trouble quitting, seek guidance – you’re worth it, and you’re friends and family will appreciate it.