10 Best resolutions for your health
Want to feel great in 2010? Follow these 10 easy resolutions for optimal health and wellness in the new year.
Go ahead and "wine!"
One of the best resolutions you can make for your body is to take good care of your heart, and wine can help you do just that. Resveratrol, a substance found in red wine, helps prevent damage to blood vessels, reduces bad cholesterol and reduces the risks of inflammation and blood clotting. Elderberry wine, which the British began making in the 17th century, has been found to nip the flu in the bud. Used since Egyptian times as a healing aid, studies show the elderberry smoothes out spikes on the outside of a virus -- spikes that are used to pierce cell walls.
Happy HDL levels -- Salut!
We all know about good and bad cholesterol, but remembering which is which, and even more importantly, knowing how to keep the good cholesterol happy (i.e. on the rise) is the key to a healthy heart. You can increase good cholesterol with such well known tactics as exercising regularly, maintaining an ideal weight and stopping smoking, but another easy way is enjoying one or two drinks of alcohol per day (the equivalent of 1 to 1-1/2 ounces. More than this amount is unhealthy for the heart.)
Laugh your ass off (LYAO)
Here's one of those health tips that's easy to follow. They say laughter is the best medicine, so go ahead and LYAO at least once a day. One good dose of LYAO can relax the muscles for up to 45 minutes, protect against infectious diseases by boosting the immune system and reduce pain by releasing endorphins into the bloodstream. So go ahead... LYAO!
While you're laughing your ass off, go ahead and move it, too! Physical activity is imperative for a healthy, slim physique and well... a tight booty! The type of exercise is not as important as the fact that you just move it. Pick exercises you love and MYAO at least five days per week. It's a fun resolution to keep.
Oh, oh, oh, ooooo
Speaking of fun resolutions, a little more sex could be just what the doctor ordered. Sex burns calories, reduces stress, boosts immunity, burns calories, improves cardio health, boosts self-esteem, reduces pain and much more. What are you waiting for? Go get your groove on!
Be a social butterfly
Want to live long and prosper? Resolve to be a good friend. Friendships provide a community of support for motivation, accountability and, most importantly, a safe and welcome "space" for giving and receiving love and kindness -- essential components of a healthy life.
Find your Zen place
Meditation offers many benefits: It increases oxygen flow throughout the body, decreases respiratory rate, provides a deep level of relaxation, builds self-confidence, boosts the immune system and much more. Meditation is the easiest way to optimize your health because you don't have to do a thing -- just sit quietly and motionless for 30 minutes a day. Need a little help? Try this online finger labyrinth. Choose your icon and follow the path to serenity.
Make relaxation a resolution. The benefits of aromatherapy have long been recognized. Even Mary Magdalene practiced the healing art of aromatherapy. For instance, lavender essential oil provides many healing benefits: It reduces stress and tension, reduces scarring, reduces inflammation and serves as a topical antibiotic. Dab a few drops on your wrist or apply during a massage for deeper relaxation. Be sure to add it to a carrier oil such as almond or jojoba, because pure essential oils alone may irritate the skin.
Bask in the rays
Sunshine is the best source of vitamin D, which is essential for maintaining a healthy weight, a healthy mood and a healthy immune system. Plus, it helps protect against cancer. Get at least 15 minutes of sunshine a day, and your body will thank you for it (and of course, resolve to always wear sunscreen)!
Fetch, Fido! Fetch!
Pet owners and doctors agree that having a family pet is good for your health. Pets bring unconditional love and companionship to those who embrace them in their lives. This camaraderie can decrease blood pressure, cholesterol, triglyceride levels and feelings of loneliness all while increasing opportunities for exercise, sunshine and socializing.