For Less than $ 100
Changes cost not only efforts, but also, in many cases, money.
Fortunately, this is not the case of changing some life habits.
Experts on heart problems, exercise, and family health are
convinced that there are dozens of strategies that can help improve
Here are five original proposals for the professionals at LipoScience, Inc. and Novant Heart & Wellness, Raleigh, to lead a healthy lifestyle with little money:
1. Lipid test:“This diagnostic test might be your heart’s best friend, now and in the future,” explains William C. Cromwell, MD, Medical Director of Heart & Wellness/Raleigh. The test analyzes the amount and size of lipoproteins that carry cholesterol in the blood, and specifies the amount of cholesterol. This way, the chance of suffering a heart disease, or even a heart attack, can be predicted. Cost: Around $100. Some insurance companies include it in their plans.
2. Pedometer:For those that have the goal of walking, experts suggest using a pedometer, which will help them quantify how much they’re walking and therefore increase progressively. In addition, it has been demonstrated that when a person uses a pedometer, he/she has an incentive to struggle a little more each day. Cost: between $15 and $45, depending on the style.
3. Exercise with what you have at home.Who hasn’t used money as an excuse for not going to the gym. But the solution is much closer than many think: “Most of us don’t realize that exercise equipment can be as near as our kitchen,” says Mirabai Holland, a renowned fitness instructor specialized in prevention and rehabilitation. “Water bottles, cans of soup, even flour containers can become weights to tone and tighten arms and legs.” Another exercise can be performed using a towel: “Take a towel a put it on your back, rolling it up and down to increase flexibility,” explained the coach. Cost: $10 – 30.
4. Smoking cessation program.In the U.S. more than 46 million adults are active smokers. Each year, 440,000 Americans die because of smoking consequences; it has become the first “preventable” cause of death. Some states offer free or minimum-cost programs for smoking cessation. Nicotine replacement therapy has given good results, same as group therapies. Cost: $40 - $400.
5. A magnifying glass.It may seem like a joke, but how many times do we ignore the calories and fat in a meal because we can’t read an extremely small font size? With a magnifying glass, you’ll be able to read all food labels. It wouldn’t be the first time someone chooses a meal thinking it has 250 calories per serving, finding out later that those 250 calories corresponded 100 grams of the package. Experts recommend carefully reading the “calories per serving.” “Some healthy ingredients mentioned in large font sizes are then actually found in small amounts. There are blueberry waffles with no blueberries, and strawberry yogurts with only strawberry essence. A magnifying glass will help you see the truth in food labels, usually found in smaller fonts.” Cost: $7 - $15.
Finally, the MyDiet team suggests:
1. A personalized weight loss plan.Sometimes we’d like to find healthier alternatives to our diet, but don’t know where to start. Visiting a dietitian can be expensive and complicated, because we never find the right time. Therefore, a customized plan can be the solution. The MyDiet 2010™ Plan provides a food and exercise program tailored to each person’s habits and preferences. It provides the opportunity of consulting a team of nutrition counselors by phone or e-mail, in English or Spanish. Cost: $60 per month. More information.
These are only some suggestions for a healthier lifestyle. Being creative, you’ll find many more. The important thing is to realize that healthy habits are within your reach. Always.
Source: LipoScience Inc.; Novant Heart & Wellness of Raleigh
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