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9 health resolutions for the new year

At the start of the year, this is an opportunity to adopt health resolutions that will benefit you all year round.

1: train "in strength"
In just 10 minutes a day, you could gain energy, have stronger bones and a faster metabolism

2: control your portions
Want to reduce your waistline? Start by reducing your portions. Studies show that reduced portions promote weight loss because they help curb overeating.

3: cut the salt
Studies show that many North Americans consume almost twice the recommended amount of salt, set at 1 tsp. or 6 grams, per day. In addition to contributing to water retention (therefore bloating), salt increases blood pressure. Processed foods contain a lot, so read the labels carefully. A low salt diet lowers the risk of heart disease but also hypertension and helps in healthy weight management.

4: increase antioxidants
When your body breaks down food, it produces molecules called free radicals. Cigarette smoke and radiation also produce it. Over time, the damage caused by these molecules can lead to infections, cancer, inflammation, and heart disease. This is where antioxidants come in. Here's how the American Dietetic Association sums it up: When you cut an apple, it quickly browns. But if you dip it in orange juice, which contains vitamin C (an antioxidant), it stays white. You can defend your body against free radicals in various ways, including through your diet. Pomegranate, coffee, and even chocolate contain antioxidants.

5: quit smoking
For smokers, this resolution could be painful because quitting smoking is a daunting challenge. If you think about the benefits and take advantage of the resources at your fingertips now, this could be the year you become smoke-free.

6: floss
Like many of our contemporaries, you may not be aware that bacteria in your mouth can cause serious problems if you neglect your oral health. You may also be surprised to learn that during routine checkups, your dentist may spot signs of diabetes and heart disease. The simple way to stop bacteria is to floss.

7: wear sunscreen ... all year round
Sun exposure affects everyone. According to the Canadian Dermatology Association, skin cancer usually develops after the age of 50, well after sun damage from an early age. The sun's rays are also responsible for dark spots and cause early wrinkles to appear. Wear broad-spectrum sunscreen, even in winter, on skin exposed to the elements.

8: have expectations of yourself
Having healthy expectations for yourself is important for your physical and mental health. Obviously, this is easier said than done. An inner critical mind can ruin your efforts, prevent you from achieving your personal goals, and decrease your ability to be an active participant in your life.

9: practice an activity
The ability to stay in motion is a common trait of many thin people. Add physical activity to your daily schedule (adults should do 30 minutes of activity a day). Once you develop this habit, you will see, the possibilities will be endless.

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