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Prioritizing your health can feel like an uphill battle, especially with pie-filled holidays and hibernation weather looming. But you don’t need to overhaul your whole life or spend a fortune to make positive changes. Here are seven things you can do right now.
Aim for an extra three glasses of water each day, including one first thing in the morning (yes, before coffee). Carry around a water bottle and you’ll be surprised how often you reach for it.
Step outside for 15 minutes to get your daily dose of vitamin D, which may protect against heart disease and osteoporosis. (Sitting by a window doesn’t cut it, since glass blocks the UVB rays that trigger your skin’s response.)
Make a point of moving around for a few minutes every hour, instead of, say, checking Instagram. Do 20 jumping jacks, walk around the block, practice your “Sorry” moves—just get off your butt.
It may seem pointless if you’re not a dancer, but keeping your muscles limber can protect against injuries, particularly those of the repetitive-use variety (i.e., the ones you get just going about your day). Bonus: It’s really relaxing if you do it before bed.
Laughing counteracts the effects of stress and boosts your immune system. So yukking it up with your friends is just as important as taking your daily multivitamin (not to mention a whole lot more fun).
Or ten. A few slow, mindful breaths go a long way toward managing everything from anxiety to headaches. Focus your breath at least once a day or anytime you’re feeling overwhelmed.
Here’s a simple trick for preventing strain on your eyes: For every 20 minutes of staring at a screen (computer, phone, TV), look away and focus on something in the distance—at least 20 feet away—for 20 seconds. Ahh, much better.
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