alt text here

Health Awareness and You


Personal health awareness begins with small steps. Below are examples of how you can personally start shifting gears to better health. These easy-to-use tips can help you make small changes in your health and fitness that can have a significant, positive impact on your overall health and wellness.

Physical Activity

  • Walk the talk. When chatting on the phone, walk around.
  • The bicycle maneuver is one of the best ways to tone abs. Lie on your back, hands gently resting behind head. Using the bicycle pedaling motion, crunch left knee to right elbow and right knee to left elbow.
  • New to exercise? Begin with 10 minutes of activity, and add 10 minutes a week for the next five weeks.
  • Create a motivator. Form a fitness group. Everyone donate $5 to a jar. Decide what, where and when people must show up. At the end of three months, whoever shows up the most gets the money .
  • The Moving Walkway. When traveling through the airport, bypass the traveling walkway and count it as exercise.
  • Take the shopping cart back into the store. You will increase your "accumulated activity" for the day.
  • Old Faithful. Jumping jacks make a good workout or warm up. They improve cardiovascular fitness and strengthen bones. Do 50 three times a day.
  • Strong legs at your desk. Extend your right let out in front and point your toe. Write the letters of the alphabet with your foot. Change legs and repeat.
  • Desk Abs. Sitting up tall, place your hands on your abdominal muscles, squeeze muscles where your hands are placed. Move hands in different spots and squeeze. Exhale as you pull in.
  • Take one minute three times a day to squeeze and release the glute muscles. It may also reduce hip and lower back pain.
  • Boogie Nights. Make family fitness fun. Play music and get everyone moving around the family room.
  • The Wall Sit. Stand against a sturdy wall with back flat to the wall, feet shoulder-width apart, slide down until hips are even with knees. Hold until you fatigue.
  • Keep a pair of 5 lb. dumbbells around. In 10 minutes you can do some bicep curls, triceps extensions, and the reverse fly and overhead press. Try 2 sets.
  • Pace yourself. Get a pedometer and walk up to 10,000 steps a day.
  • Childish behavior. Kids build 50% of their bone mass between ages 11-19. It is imperative kids 9 years and over get a minimum of 4 servings of calcium-rich foods or milk products each day.

Balanced Diet

  • Count colors not calories. Have at least one fruit and one vegetable that is green, red, purple, orange, and yellow each day.
  • Control yourself. The amount of food that fills a salad plate is all we really need for meals - without seconds!
  • Switch Hands. If you snack with your non-dominant hand you will eat less. Try it!
  • Stick a fork in it. With dressing on the side, dip your fork into the dressing first before stabbing the greens and save hundreds of calories and avoid unwanted fat.
  • To resist temptation to snack after dinner, brush your teeth immediately after your meal.
  • Make a promise to never, ever supersize again.
  • Not all yogurts are created equal! Sugar content per serving can range between a low of 9 grams to a high of 56 grams. Check Nutrition Facts labels.
  • A serving of pasta is ½ cup - about the size of a tennis ball cut in half. That's it!

  • A Lean Machine. Trimming visible fat from meat before cooking can reduce fat intake by as much as 50%.

  • Read all about it. Protect yourself by checking the Nutrition Facts labels.
  • Don't eat until you are full; eat until you are no longer hungry.
  • Hungry after dinner? Sip a hot drink. It can definitely put a damper on a lingering appetite.
  • Popeye would agree. Spinach is the best of the best. If your meal calls for "lettuce" use fresh spinach instead.
  • The amount of salt we need is found naturally in the foods we eat. Cut back by slowly reducing daily intake.
  • Let-us help. When it comes to lettuce greens, the darker is better. While romaine is heads above iceberg, arugula, watercress and spinach are loaded with even more cancer-fighting nutrients.

Stress Reduction

  • Stress Buster. Sit up tall, clasp fingers behind neck. Stretch elbows back, pressing shoulder blades together. Hold for 5-15 seconds.
  • Make your list and stick to it. Write down the 3-5 things that are most important to you each morning. Decide to focus on them more and everything else less.
  • Take a "minute" vacation. Close your eyes and imagine a place where you feel relaxed. Completely focus on your visual destination and let your thoughts ease your mind.
  • Blow it out. When you get irritated, try this to calm down. Sit up tall in your chair, take a big deep breath in through your nose (feel your abdomen rise) and slowly count to five as you exhale through your mouth. Repeat four more times.
  • Laugh, laugh out loud. Science shows that laughter is often the best medicine; it instantly puts your body and mind in a state of ease. Tell someone a joke today.
  • Connect with others. Volunteer in the community, schedule an outing with a loved one, or take up a group activity you enjoy.
  • Get write to it. Write down your thoughts for five minutes each morning or night. Research shows writing that analyzes your problems and expresses your emotions is stress-relieving.

Other Helpful Tips

  • Cold Front. Avoid spreading and catching germs. Sneeze into your elbow!
  • Wear 99-100% UVA/UVB protection all year long when going out in the sun.
  • Smile at someone new today; the joy you bring is good for their heart and yours!

These tips provided by Health-E-tips, Inc.
For more health tips, visit www.healthetips.com