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New Year, New You

We’re counting down to the New Year with many new year's resolutions on our minds. The biggest one being a healthier lifestyle. Being healthier for 2017 doesn't have to mean revamping your entire routine. Sometimes, all it takes are a few simple changes. It’s all about the small moves you make that reap huge health benefits down the road. That being said, here are some small moves you can make to make 2017 your best year yet!

Lemon water is easy to prepare and has a couple of health benefits. It’s as simple as waking up and squeezing some lemon into a tall glass of water. The mixture helps improve your immunity because of the vitamin C and encourages digestion. Many people feel tired because they are dehydrated, so this is an easy way to make you drink more water. But remember, lemon has citric acid, which can erode tooth enamel. Try drinking lemon water with a straw and rinse your mouth afterwards to avoid the citric acid effects.

Organize your refrigerator

When you’re hungry, you’re more likely to grab a quick and easy snack, which often isn’t the healthiest. Try putting the healthier foods front and center in your fridge, keeping the indulgent foods out of sight, and doing some prep work. The technical term for this is “choice architecture.” Instead of keeping the fresh fruits and veggies in the crisper, put them in clear containers at eye-level, those will grab your attention when you open the door. It’s also helpful to do a weekly inventory check.

Workout at work

There have been so many exercises developed in the last couple of years that are work friendly and easy to knock out while you’re working away. For example:

Chair squats: To work out those glutes, stand about 6 inches in front of your chair and lower yourself down until your butt hits the edge, then pop back up. Repeat.

Book lifts/presses: To tone those triceps, grab the heaviest book you can find around the office. With your elbows overhead, hold the book behind your head. Slowly lower the book down by your neck and then extend your arms up. Remember to keep elbows close to your ears. Repeat.

Posture: be sure you’re always sitting with your feet flat on the ground knees bent at a 90 degree angle and shoulders rolled back. Keeping good posture is a workout in itself.

Indulge in chocolate

Sounds too good to be true, right? Research shows you can increase your alertness by eating dark chocolate. Thanks to flavanols, which are key components in dark chocolates. They work in dilating blood vessels, which allows more oxygen and blood to reach important parts of the brain. You also feel happier and more content. Flavanols are also found naturally in tea leaves and in certain fruits and vegetables, but the amounts vary.

Grab a massage

Let go of 2016 stress and treat yourself. The healing touch actually has some scientific backing. Studies of the benefits of massage demonstrate it’s an effective treatment for reducing stress, pain and muscle tension. Massage is generally considered part of complementary and alternative medicine. It’s even used in physical therapy.

*These tips are starting places. Don’t jump into them all at once. If some of these tips don’t work for you, move on and try something that does.


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