8 Easy Ways to Live Healthier in 2018

If you're like most people, you've entered the new year with the intention of making healthier choices. Maybe you made a resolution to eat less fast food, or take a walk a couple times a week... Whatever you've decided on, it's likely to be a challenge. But life is challenging enough on its own, so why

make things more difficult? Luckily for you, we've come up with 8 easy ways to make this year your healthiest year yet!

1. Get enough sleep.

The first tip seems like a no-brainer. But according to the CDC, 35% of Americans aren't sleeping the recommended amount (7 hours a night). Lack of sleep can lead to things like: stroke, impaired concentration, heart attack, high blood pressure, poor mental health and more.

2. Drink more water.

Our bodies are composed of 60% water. H2O is essential for the functioning of our organs, cells, and body functions. In short: it's extremely important. Recommended daily intake for the average adult is eight 8 oz. glasses. This is called the 8x8 rule. Pretty easy to remember, right?

3. Eat breakfast.

Just like grandma always said, breakfast really is the most important meal of the day! Studies have shown people who eat breakfast report higher levels of focus and memory during the day. Also, people who eat breakfast are usually thinner! So start your day with a balanced meal packed with protein and fiber. Your body will thank you.

4. Learn how to manage your stress in a healthy way.

Stress is something that we all have, but the majority of us don't know how to deal with it. Stressors can be anything... a difficult boss, or financial issues. It doesn't matter what's stressing you out, what matters is how you manage those stressors. Healthy ways to manage stress can include: meditation, talking to someone you trust, avoiding your stressors, or journaling. Find what works for you and make it a priority.

5. Eat more snacks.

Healthy snacks, that is. By allowing yourself a small snack in between meals you are boosting your metabolism while also curbing your appetite so you won't be as tempted to overeat at meal time.

6. Take a walk.

It doesn't have to be a long walk, or even up a steep hill. I'm recommending the kind of walk where you let your feet and mind wander. Hear me out. Taking a walk isn't only good for your body, it's also good for your mental health. Making time for a daily walk can improve your self-esteem, help your body relax, and reduce stress.

7. Schedule a check-up.

No one likes going to the doctor, but keeping an eye on your body and scheduling regular check-ups is essential to staying healthy! Getting into a clinic in town is now easier than ever. Your local health dept. offers a clinic with our Family Nurse Practitioner, Diana Boyle, weekly. Now accepting new patients.

8. Wear sunscreen.

Protecting your skin from the sun is one of the most important tips I can give you. You probably already know to wear sunscreen on a sunny day in the summer; but the truth is, you should be wearing sunscreen every day you spend time outside. The sun’s rays can penetrate our skin even on cloudy days.

I hope these easy tips help you make 2018 your healthiest year yet! If you'd like more information on living a healthy lifestyle, contact our nutritional specialist Susan Jarrett at 304-265-1288, or visit our website at www.GTCHDWV.org.

#healthyliving #newyear

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