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Seems like eve​ry year we make the same New Year’s resolutions to exercise regularly, eat healthier, lose unwanted pounds and give up tobacco along with some other bad habits.


This year, let’s try to keep the promises we ​make to ourselves. It’ll be worth it. Following some basic rules can help reduce your risk for developing heart disease, Type-2 diabetes and some forms of cancer.

Here are 10 practical, easy-to-follow health tips for a healthier you in the New Year.

1. Start walking. Try for at least 30 minutes of walking each day. This can help lower blood pressure, control weight gain and, in general, raise your spirits. As you become more accustomed, try walking more briskly and then try adding an extra 10 minutes – and then another.

2. Forage for fiber. A high-fiber diet can help keep your internal engine running smoothly. Fiber, also called roughage, includes parts of plant foods your body can’t digest or absorb. Examples include oatmeal, bran, whole-grain cereals, beans, peas, apples, raspberries, blackberries, citrus fruits, carrots, brown rice and barley. In fact, you can find fiber in most fruits and vegetables .

3. Get fishy. Compelling research strongly suggests that oils found in darker types of fish, such as salmon, tuna, mackerel and herring, are beneficial for the heart and brain and may even lower risk of cancer.

4. Water, water every where. Water should be the first thing you reach for when you’re thirsty. Drink six to eight glasses a day – it’s truly essential for your health.

5. Catch those Z-Z-Z-Z-Zs. Sleep is important to your overall health. Recent studies confirm that adults need at least seven hours a night. Adequate sleep increases alertness, boosts memory and reduces the likelihood of causing a car accident. 

6. Put a lid on sugar. Decreasing sugar can actually increase your energy by minimizing the highs and lows that sweets trigger. “Sugar highs” have even been known to contribute to road rage. “Sugar lows” can cause blackouts among people with diabetes.

7. Quit smoking. Why do I even have to mention this? You know it’s not good for you. If you’re having trouble quitting, get professional guidance.

8. Don't drink “hidden” calories. That coffee-latte with the mixed-in goodies has nearly as many calories as a Big Mac. Consider it a meal, not a drink.

9. Go green – with salads, that is. Eating a salad before lunch or dinner can help keep you from overeating by curbing your appetite and giving you a sense of “being full” sooner than expected. And the fiber (there’s that word again) in the veggies can do wonders for your digestive tract.

10. Choose a primary care physician. Primary care physicians are trained in a number of different medical specialties and focus on preventive medicine. They educate patients about healthy diet and exercise habits, and monitor their health through yearly checkups and preventive screenings. Research shows that people who have a primary care physician are more likely to have their cholesterol checked, get tested for diabetes and be screened for certain types of cancers.