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For Your Health: 23 attainable tips for a healthier 2023

by Cole County Health Department | January 24, 2023 at 4:00 a.m.

A new year often means a fresh start for many people. For some, this means setting health goals, such as losing weight, following a healthier diet, and starting an exercise routine.

But new year's resolutions are many times not realistic when they are too extreme to be long lasting and tend to be unsustainable. We have good intentions. The gyms are full and your spouse just swore off sugar, but before long the gym parking lot will have plenty of empty spaces and sugar is back on the table.

Making your health a priority could impact every area of your life. It's also something only you have the ability to strongly influence. Even if you have a genetic predisposition to a certain disease, you can take preventative action that could help reduce your chances of being impacted by that risk.

However, research shows people who have a family history of a disease often don't believe their own susceptibility to developing the disease is any higher than average.

Regardless of our genetics, as we age, we are all susceptible to declining health and well-being. Our immune systems aren't quite as good as they once were, and we may be more tired and on edge due to the many physical and mental demands and stresses of life.

There are many things you can do to improve your health and quality of life, and when you put them all together, they can really add up to helping you get the most out of life and to be the healthiest version of you.

Here are 23 tips and habits for 2023 that you can actually keep:

1. Plan and prep some of your meals.

2. Cook more meals at home.

3. Eat more meals at the table with your family.

4. Spend more time outside.

5. Find a physical activity you enjoy.

6. Eat more fruits and vegetables.

7. Eat less fast food and processed convenience foods.

8. Cut back on sweetened beverages.

9. Limit screen time.

10. Cut back smoking and/or vaping.

11. Cut back on alcohol consumption.

12. Reduce time spent on social media and/or electronics.

13. Get more quality sleep.

14. Take time for self-care. Maintain a positive mind-set.

15. Stop negative body talk.

16. Go grocery shopping regularly.

17. Reduce your caffeine intake.

18. Walk more by parking farther away from entrances.

19. Take the stairs.

20. Get involved with a supportive community or church family.

21. Pray and/or meditate.

22. Educate and empower yourself with health information.

23. Know your health history and risks.

Taking the initiative to being proactive in your health is one of the most important things you do for yourself.

When we are in a health crisis, it's much more difficult to do the things we need to do for ourselves to improve our health. That's why it's important to continually be identifying simple and effective health habits that impact your overall health in a positive way.

By applying small changes consistently over time, big results are possible.

Melinda Ridenhour has been with the Cole County Health Department for more than 24 years. She is a registered dietitian and international board certified lactation consultant and is the director of nutrition services, WIC Clinic manager and Central Missouri Mother's Milk Depot coordinator.

Print Headline: For Your Health: 23 attainable tips for a healthier 2023

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