2020 is nearly here, and like every new year, with it comes a host of New Year’s resolutions for many people. Some of these are the standard, like going to the gym, drinking less coffee, quitting cigarettes, and sticking to a budget. Some of these are the unexpected, like beginning to meditate or spending less time on Facebook.
While we can’t help you kick your social media addiction, we can offer some valuable insight into health-based resolutions. After all, we are the largest urgent care network in Southern California. We’ve learned a thing or two about how to get and stay healthy over the years.
With that in mind, find our top seven New Year’s health resolutions below. Check them out and start incorporating them into your daily routine. Don’t forget to visit any of our eleven locations should you need quick and expert medical care!
Get a Full Night’s Sleep
Now, this doesn’t mean you have to sleep eight hours every night. Rather, you should get the right amount for you. According to the Sleep Foundation, children, adolescents, and teenagers need between eight and ten hours. Young adults need between seven and nine. Adults need the same. Seniors can get away with seven to eight hours.
If you can’t get your recommended hours of sleep at night, you may think about adding in a power nap during the day. Even fifteen or twenty minutes throughout the day will leave you feeling well-rested and ready to take on anything that life may throw at you.
Drink More Water
It’s estimated that as many as 75 percent of all Americans may suffer from dehydration. Not drinking enough water can lead to a whole host of potential issues, including fatigue, confusion, dizziness, irritability and more. It’s time to start drinking more water people!
Men should drink a minimum of 3.7 liters and women should drink a minimum of 2.7 liters daily. Our tips for staying hydrated? Carry a refillable water bottle with you throughout the day. Keep it topped off and handy. Take a few sips whenever you feel like grabbing a soda or coffee. Hydration, here you come!
Walk, Walk, and Walk Some More
Thanks to the miraculous devices we carry in our pockets at all times, measuring your walking has never been easier. This is good news because the benefits of getting your daily steps are numerous. Not only will this help you shed calories and keep the pounds off, but it also contributes to an overall healthier lifestyle.
Remember, being healthy isn’t about how many times you can work out in a given week. It isn’t about maintaining a strict paleo or organic diet. It isn’t about being skinny or well-toned. Being healthy is about creating a holistic lifestyle that you can maintain. Walking an extra couple hundred steps each day fits easily into even the busiest individual’s life.
Take a Daily Probiotic
Did you know that around 90 percent of your body’s serotonin is produced in the gut? The easiest way to a happier and healthier you is by taking care of your gut. The easiest way to a healthy gut? By taking a daily probiotic.
Probiotics are supplements that are rich in healthy gut bacteria. They help keep your intestines in balance and help your body absorb and utilize nutrients. They can even help improve your mood, as mentioned above. The best part? Most yogurts are rich in probiotics. Start eating a cup every morning!
Swap Your Coffee for Tea
We love caffeine and would never dream of saying you shouldn’t be as caffeinated as you want to. What we don’t love, though, is coffee. Coffee is good for an energy boost, but it just doesn’t have the same health benefits as tea.
Tea is rich in antioxidants (matcha is even richer!), has tons of polyphenols (micronutrients), helps reduce inflammation, and has been shown by multiple studies to help inhibit tumor cell growth. Tea also has other energy-producing compounds like l-theanine, theobromine, and more. The takeaway? Time to swap your coffee for tea.
Cut Back on Salt
We also love salt and know how it makes things taste great, but it’s important to watch your sodium intake because consuming too much can increase blood pressure, which in the long run can lead to stroke, kidney, disease, heart attack, or other serious conditions.
With that in mind, you might try using salt only during the cooking process, or at least make sure to taste the food before salting. Additionally, you can substitute with \with lemon or lime juice, garlic, red pepper flakes, herbs or a salt-free seasoning blend. Stock your fridge and pantry with your favorite fresh and dried herbs so you’ll always have them on hand to flavor your foods in place of salt.
Staying mindful can take on many different forms. For some people, it means meditation and yoga. For others, it means journaling and taking time to reflect on their day. Still, for others mindfulness means taking a few minutes to simply relax, to breathe, and to clear the mind of its daily clutter.
Whatever form mindfulness takes for you, it’s important to remember to practice it! According to the APA, the benefits of mindfulness include: decreased stress, increased mood, boosts to your working memory, less emotional reactivity, and more.
Set Realistic Goals
Last, but certainly not least, it’s incredibly important to set realistic goals for yourself in this upcoming year. Whatever your personal New Year’s resolutions are, make sure they’re something you can actually achieve. Setting lofty goals may seem like a good way to push yourself to better habits and health, but it’s incredibly impractical in real life.
Need Help With Your Resolutions? Come to UrgentMED
There you have it! The top seven New Year’s health resolutions. Start putting them into practice today and you’ll see a healthier, happier you. If you get sick or need expert medical care along the way, make sure to stop into one of UrgentMED’s walk-in clinics in Southern California. We have 18 locations around Los Angeles that are quick, convenient, and they all have free parking!