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New Year’s Resolutions

Some suggestions for a healthy 2023!

Lose ten pounds this year: Please don’t make a resolution to be the same weight as you were in college. If you set an unrealistic expectation, it’s going to get you very discouraged. My advice is to set a goal of losing a pound per month.

It’s hard enough to prevent gaining weight. You can easily gain five pounds in a weekend visiting your sister and her family. Food is a celebration and hard to resist.

After studying so many diets over the last 30 years, a simple truth is apparent. You simply have to eat less. Duh. Eat the cake at your sister’s house, but ask for a very tiny slice.

Listen to your hunger. Don’t just eat because it’s meal time or because you feel obliged to clean your plate. When you go out to eat, try to take half home in a doggy bag. When everyone is ordering dessert, try a cup of hot tea instead. Try to eat less anytime you can.

Take supplements: Here is a basic list.

Fiber- Psyllium husk in the morning and Benefiber in the afternoon.

Follow the directions on the package and be sure to drink a lot of water to wash this down. I also chew on a couple of fiber gummies during the day. This keeps hunger away and lowers your blood sugar.

Multivitamin- like Centrum.

Fish oil- 2 or 3 capsules per day.

Flaxseed oil- 1 or 2 per day.

Vitamin D3- at least 2,000 units per day.

Exercise: Recently, I had a terrible cold and I couldn’t eat. A week later, I weighed myself. I was shocked to see that after eating so little, I had gained a pound.

I had been sitting and lying down most of the week. It was surprising to realize how many calories are burned by just walking around the office or at home during the day. Moral of the story- get up and walk around. Go outside and take a walk. Putter around the kitchen chopping up fruits and vegetables for later. Try not to sit for more than 15 minutes at a time. Even standing is better than sitting.

Try to have some organized exercise, but make sure you are having fun. Join a community garden and go there at least once a week. There are a lot of Meet Up groups that do outdoor walks, Tai Chi, yoga, and dance classes. I think you are more likely to exercise if you do it with other people and pick something that you really like.

I try to ride my bike every weekend. My balance and strength have really improved. I take a yoga class once a week, as well. In the summer, I swim every day. Too bad summer in the Northeast is about 8 weeks long. I also recommend that you have a little stretching routine that you do each morning for 5 minutes or so.

Meet with Family and Friends: My last suggestion for 2023 is to dedicate time for family and friends. We are all so busy and time slips by so quickly.

Time is your most valuable asset. I recommend that you mark down in your calendar a weekly or biweekly time to meet with a family member or friend. This doesn’t have to be a complicated affair. Meet in a park with a sandwich, at Starbucks for a cup of coffee, at the bookstore, or at an event. Feeling connected to other people is vital to your health and well being. This is the fuel you need to take care of yourself this year.

Good luck to you and I hope you found some of these tips helpful. I am wishing you a wonderful new year of health and happiness.

Kristina Janson, DPM