Happy New Year: What Bad Habit Will You Kick In 2016?

kick a bad habit

The following article is a guest post.

Happy New Year to all! With 2016 officially underway, it is time for the time-honored tradition of making New Year’s Resolutions. Plenty of people will be packing the gyms in order to get into shape and trim weight. How long they stay in that gym is the question. Another common resolution is kicking a bad habit. So whether you want to stop biting your nails or drinking soda, the new year is the perfect catalyst to do so.

For those needing inspiration, here are some ideas.

In 2016, what will be the bad habit you kick?

Phone Use Before Bed.

Phone use right before bed is a pretty common and seemingly harmless act. Just before or even after you switch out the lights, you find yourself making one last run through emails, scrolling through Facebook, or playing a candy related mobile game. The one good thing about this habit, is that it really does not hurt anyone else, except potentially your partner if they would rather not hear the clicking of phone keys before bed.

Despite the harmlessness of this habit, it actually can really affect you in a negative way. The light from your screen can actually hurt your sleep cycle. The light actually creates a biological cue that it is morning. So while you know it is nighttime, your body starts preparing for the morning.

Your body produces a chemical known as melatonin which essentially makes you sleepy. The light from your screen can trick your body, causing it to affect how it produces that melatonin. Thus, you aren’t as sleepy or you may not have as deep of a sleep.

Tip: Charge your phone someplace out of reach of the bed. Instead of leaving it on the nightstand, leave your phone on a dresser that actually makes you get out of bed to reach. That way you are less likely to use it while in bed. You should also leave it screen side down to avoid the light from incoming texts and emails, from disturbing your sleep.

Drinking a Soda/Eating a Dessert with Every Meal.

Another seemingly harmless habit is having a soda or a dessert with every meal. While everyone generally knows that this isn’t the healthiest of habits, it can’t be all bad right? Well, let’s start with the soda. Pop such as Coca-Cola, Pepsi, root beer, Mountain Dew, and other are absolutely loaded with sugar. Many of them contain more sugar than desserts. The sweetness is just masked by other flavors and carbonation.

For example, in a single can of Coca-Cola there are 9.33 teaspoons of sugar. Teaspoons are small right? Well, do a trial run. Go to your sugar jar and measure our 9.33 teaspoons of sugar. Now, drink it. Stop! Don’t really drink it. But you get the point.

Desserts on the other hand might actually be less harmful to you than soda, depending on what you are eating for dessert. Triple fudge brownies? Not good. Mixed berries with a dollop of whip cream? Much better.

The point is that desserts can be okay in moderation and with respect to what type of dessert it is. You should not be eating a dessert after every meal.

Holding On To Grudges.

Moving on to a little more serious note, another bad habit you should kick is holding on to grudges. Almost everyone does it at some point. You had an argument with a family member or close friend and you refuse to move past it. Whether this was your fault or the other party wronged you, it is still a bad habit to hold on to a grudge. The reason being is that there simply is not enough time in your life to harbor negative feelings towards someone.

You hear a lot about how a daughter may not have spoken to her mother in ten year or a son has refused to talk to his father in five years. Whatever the situation is, the result tends to be the same. The two parties in question hold on to their grudges until it is too late. The parent passes away or the child has an abrupt death. Now, the living family members are left with lost time with a loved one and no way to apologize.

It is best to apologize and move on if possible. You don’t want to be that person that hasn’t talked to a loved in ten years only to learn that they have passed away. Even without the event of a death, you still lose all those years and potential experiences with that individual. If the issue between family members is severe, seek professional counseling help to mediate the situation. The sooner you are able to move past issues, the happier you will be.

[tweetthis]Staying mad at someone takes a lot more effort than being happy.[/tweetthis]

Netflix and Chill.

Finally, to end on a later note, stop binge watching Netflix. From one Netflix user to another, the addiction is real. It is really hard to hit the pause button when “Making a Murderer” is all that anyone talks about and Netflix autoplays the next episode as soon as one finishes. Try to fight the urge to keep watching. Sitting for ten straight hours watching a TV show is very unhealthy physically, psychologically, and socially. Go outside and enjoy 2016!

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How Supplements Can Improve Your Overall Health

How Supplements Can Improve Your Overall Health

Dietary requirements, allergies, intolerances, illnesses and other factors can prevent us from getting optimum nutrients and vitamins from food alone. That’s why millions of people all over the world take supplements each day, whether they are recommended by a doctor to treat a deficiency, or just to ensure people get enough of what their diet lacks.

In this article, we’ll give a list of popular recommended supplements to top up your diet and ensure you’re getting the correct dosage of some important nutrients.

Most supplements can be taken harmlessly with no side effects, but you should always thoroughly check labels and get proper medical advice if you’re unsure. For instance, St John’s Wort is widely considered an herbal remedy for depression but can actually decrease the effectivity of contraceptive pills.

For insight into your personal needs, consult with a doctor or nutritionist. Especially if you have a condition that restricts your diet, or you simply want to check that a particular supplement won’t affect any medication you take.

Popular Supplements

Probiotics

Probiotics are live bacteria usually taken in tablet or powder form as supplements for a healthy digestion and immune system. It helps ‘good’ gut bacteria flourish, which in turn helps your immune system to kill bad bacteria that could make you sick.

Prebiotics

Prebiotics basically enable the full effect of probiotics to take hold – think of it like a fertilizer enabling garden plants to properly grow. Find the best prebiotic supplement by visiting chemists, health stores or online.

Multivitamins

Multivitamins are a great solution for busy people. Simply pop one tablet that contains a cocktail of essential vitamins and nutrients! Most multivitamins contain things necessary for everybody, like vitamins A, E, C, K; folic acid; calcium; phosphorous; magnesium; iron; iodine; and plenty more.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is necessary to get through food sources or supplements each day because it can’t be stored in the human body. It’s an antioxidant which increases the volume of iron we can absorb from foods – therefore those with iron deficiency or anaemia should get lots of vitamin C too. It is easily found in fresh vegetables, citrus fruits or supplements, which you can buy cheaply in supermarkets.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is necessary for the body to absorb calcium and phosphate for healthy bones. Supplements help to ensure you get enough daily vitamin D, but you can get it in your diet by eating lots of fatty fish, red meat and eggs. (Vegetarians and vegans therefore should invest in supplements.)

Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 facilitates the proper functioning of the nervous system and is involved in the creation of blood cells. It’s vital that everyone gets enough B12.

Though it is usually found in meat and animal products like chicken, milk and eggs – this is another essential supplement for those following a vegetarian or vegan diet.

Iron

Iron is especially vital for women and pregnant women. It is involved in the transportation of oxygen around the body in the blood, which is needed to create energy.

If you experience fatigue, you could be lacking iron or suffering from anaemia. Iron supplements are helpful to top up your blood iron, but you could also eat a diet full of spinach, broccoli, nuts, seeds, brown rice, dried fruit and red meat.

Zinc

Zinc is said to regulate immune function, have effects on memory and learning ability, and help wounds heal quickly. It’s possible to get too much zinc, so it is mostly included in multivitamins rather than a supplement on its own.

Calcium

Calcium is important for healthy bones. Since it is most prevalent in dairy products, vegans or just those who don’t eat much dairy should consider taking a supplement, or a multivitamin containing calcium.

Cod liver oil

Cod liver oil contains plenty of omega-3, vitamin A and vitamin D. It can help with skin diseases, like eczema and rashes, and can help reduce inflammation of the joints and arthritis.

Eating a diet full of fresh foods is essential for good overall health. Though if your diet restricts you from getting some of these necessary vitamins, supplements are a helpful and convenient way to replace them. Ask a doctor’s advice for help with balancing your diet, or you’re experiencing any symptoms associated with lack of vitamins.