7 Quick Fixes to Keep You Healthier

By Sandy Schroeder

If you feel like you are lagging a little when it comes to protecting your health, these five-minute health fixes may get you back in step, and motivate you to do more.

Harvard Health suggests some shortcuts.

Do some new brain work - Break out of your regular groove for five minutes. Use a free app on your smartphone that broadens your vocabulary or introduces a new language. Research a new work or home topic online that could be valuable. Look for upcoming conferences that relate to your field or broaden it.

Keep your connections going - Take five minutes to talk to someone in your neighborhood or call a favorite relative. Make ongoing lunch, movie or walk dates with friends to stay in touch. Or reach out to someone new in your community.

Ramp up exercises - Even though you sit for long periods at work, it is possible to keep moving throughout your day. Take five-minute breaks to do leg lifts, or march in place. Pull in your stomach while you fix breakfast, brush your teeth or watch the morning news. When you stand up at work or at home, sit back down, and then stand up again. Every extra movement exercises arms, legs and abdomen.

Protect your skin barrier - The skin is the largest organ in the body. Infection, wounds or tears in the skin can gain entry to the body if we let the skin become rough and dried out. Use a thick oil-based cream after showering and apply moisturizers regularly to arms, body and legs.

Rest well - Get seven to nine hours of sleep every night to cover key health bases. Reduce fall risk, boost clear thinking, and avoid irritability. Harvard doctors say sleep deprivation also raises the risk for high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, obesity and premature death. Fix sleep with regular bedtimes seven days a week. Kick phones, laptops and TVs out of the bedroom, and develop a sleep ritual with soft music or a warm bath.

Keep your balance up to par - Wherever you are, on the green or the courts, out biking with your kids, or hurrying around work, good balance skills are a must. Use mat exercises, one-legged balance stands, and other yoga poses to stay balance perfect. If you have seniors in the home, take extra steps, eliminating loose rugs, slick floors and poorly lit paths at night.

Pause to meditate - Five minutes just sitting quietly and focusing on your breath can ease depression, soothe pain and lower blood pressure. Use those brief meditations whenever you need them to collect your thoughts and regain your balance after intense moments at work or at home.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Chula Vista, Calif.

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