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5 Healthy Resolutions for the New Year

Vague resolutions to get healthy or eat better rarely survive past January 15. To really make your health a priority in 2017, choose a few specific things, set goals, and identify what success looks like.

Prevention and healthy habits are the foundation of good health, so they’re a good place to start. Try these healthy resolutions for 2017. And remember—if the resolution doesn’t stick the first time out, don’t lose heart; it often takes several tries to make a new habit stick. Just don’t wait until 2018 to try again.

Take a health selfie

Screenings can give a snapshot of how you are doing and help you and your doctor identify health issues you may need to pay closer attention to. And they can save lives. Most health plans are required to cover preventive exams at no cost, so don’t be shy—talk to your doctor about what health screenings are right for you.

Give yourself a shot in the arm

Not literally. Have a professional do it. Flu shots are probably the easiest way to avoid getting sick this winter. Think you’re in the clear because you’ve made it through the holidays? Think again. Flu activity is at its peak between December and February. Preventive medicine is not just something to address on your home turf. If you’re lucky enough to travel to other parts of the world, be sure to check out which shots or treatments you should get before leaving.

Make time to play

With your friends, your family—heck, even with your food. Think of it as a happy stress-reduction tool. Whatever makes you giggle. So, queue up the silly cat videos, blow some bubbles, use a hula hoop, or break out a board game for medicinal reasons. Because laughter really is good medicine.

Step up your game

Regular exercise promotes good health, good moods, and it can help prevent a number of diseases. Whether it’s dancing in the kitchen while you’re making dinner, jumping jacks during commercial breaks, or taking an after-dinner stroll, pick something you enjoy and do it. About 20 minutes a day is enough to make a difference. And 10 minutes at a time is fine according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Be a quitter

Kick the habit in 2017. You don’t have to do it alone. Smokers who receive assistance from a clinician are twice as likely to quit successfully. The Cedars-Sinai Pulmonary Rehabilitation Program can help you stop smoking. If you want support, but prefer it from the convenience of your own home, there are a host of online and phone resources as well.