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Healthy New Year’s Resolutions You Will Keep

The most common resolutions made year after year are: Lose weight, exercise more, quit smoking and get organized.  These are excellent goals, particularly if you are a smoker or are at an unhealthy weight.  Sometimes, goals can be achieved by breaking them into small bites instead.   You may have heard these called SMART goals:  SMART stands for Specific • Measurable • Achievable • Relevant • Time Driven.  A goal to live a more healthful life, while definitely something we all want to achieve, is not a SMART goal for a few reasons.  For starters, is not specific.

Here are a few specific health related goals that nearly anyone can easily achieve, written in a way that makes them SMART.

Increase Water Intake to 8 or More Glasses Per Day by February 1st

This is specific, it is achievable and can easily be measured by marking off a chart on your refrigerator, or jotting it into an app on your phone such as Waterlogged each day. It is relevant to anyone who may not be getting enough fluids each day.  And it is time driven because of the February 1st goal date.  

Our bodies need water to function properly. Fluids help to flush out toxins, lubricate our joints and muscles, keep our skin moisturized, boost our immunity and keep us full (and so will help with that number one New Year’s resolution of losing weight!) 

If you don’t like the taste of plain water or if your tap water is not great, filtering and then adding lemon or other citrus can give it a more pleasing taste.  

If you prefer not to count glasses of water at all, simply check your urine for pale yellow color. Many foods, such as fruits, vegetables and soups have a high water content and our bodies also get water from all of our beverages (yes, even the ones with caffeine).

Schedule Preventative Screenings by March 1st

Insurance covers many preventative screenings such as well woman visits, mammogram, colonoscopy, and many more that are specific to high risk and age groups.  

You can make a SMART plan to have these screenings set up in 2019 if they apply to you. Refer to your insurance or healthcare.gov for information on what’s covered.  

Use a Bicycle Helmet When Riding

If you ride a bicycle or scooter without a helmet, pick a date and make it a goal to purchase one and wear it on every ride. 

According to the CDC:

Bicycle helmets reduce the risk of head and brain injuries in the event of a crash. All bicyclists, regardless of age, can help protect themselves by wearing properly fitted bicycle helmets every time they ride.

Buy Sanitizing Wipes or Hand Sanitizer Gel and Carry it With You

Dr. Ferrara talks about this one and swears by these products to help keep ourselves safe from germs.  

The main ingredient in both the wipes and the gel is isopropyl alcohol, which kills the germs. If you have avoided these products for fear of causing resistant bacteria (Superbugs) there is currently no evidence that these alcohol based products are harmful in that way.  

This one is easy. These products can be picked up at any drugstore or supermarket for as little as a dollar. Add it to your list to help keep your family safe from flu and other illnesses.  

Incorporating these small goals into your life and making them happen will give you the confidence and the momentum to keep going on your quest for better health.  

We wish you a healthy new year!