New Year, new you: health and vitality in 2014
(NC) Setting goals for the New Year is easy – it's sticking to them that becomes tricky when the days get shorter and life gets in the way. If nothing else, focusing on ways to implement a healthy lifestyle as well as incorporating wellness and balance could improve your quality of life in 2014 – and beyond.
Here are five simple ways to live and feel better in the New Year:
• Eat well: Make healthy food choices and consume a well-balanced diet. Be sure to eat foods that nourish your body; the appropriate servings of whole grains, vegetables, fruit, milk and alternatives, protein and healthy fats each day, to provide the body with the energy, vitamins and minerals it requires.
• Be active: According to the Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines, being active for at least 150 minutes per week can help reduce the risks of heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, Type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis, obesity, premature death and certain types of cancer. Exercise also promotes improved fitness, strength and mental health.
• Get checked: Feeling sluggish, irritable, unusually weak or fatigued could be attributed to more than just a busy schedule. It's important to pay special attention to the body and address symptoms that could point to a problem. For men over the age of 45, a decrease in energy, body changes and mood changes could be a sign of health related issues and in some cases, the culprit may be a condition known as hypogonadism or Testosterone Deficiency Syndrome, also referred to as Low Testosterone (Low T). Low T is an abnormally low level of testosterone that is estimated to affect up to 40 per cent of men in Canada over the age of 45 and often goes misdiagnosed. To rule out any potential health issues, it's important for both men and women to talk to a doctor about any health concerns that affect their lifestyle and day-to-day activities. For more information on Low T, visit www.lowt.ca.
• Sleep Well: Sleep plays an integral role in our day to day lives, and getting enough is as vital for fueling the body as food. Sleep deprivation can lead to fatigue, learning and concentration difficulties and even increased risk of accidents. Though sleep requirements vary from one person to the next, it's extremely important to get the appropriate amount of sleep for the body to function optimally.
• Laugh more: Research shows laughter is a great medicine. Humour produces psychological and physiological effects on the body that are similar to the health benefits of aerobic exercise.
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