If you are looking to make a change in the new year, DR VASILIOS SILIVISTRIS looks at some of the most common
Now the Christmas festivities are over, we are back to the harsh reality of daily life, however the New Year gives us the chance for a fresh start, the opportunity to make a few changes to our lives and a greater sense of wellbeing:
Control calories to stop weight gain.
Eat more whole grains.
Consume five to seven servings of vegetables and fruit per day.
Do not avoid fat entirely; instead, consume healthy fats in moderation.
Pick protein and dairy sources based on their low-fat content.
Find alternatives to calorie-laden beverages, and rein in the sweet tooth.
Decide on a date to quit and stick to it.
Draw up a plan of action, think about what methods are available for you and have them ready before the quit date.
Keep busy to take your mind off cigarettes.
Throw away all your ashtrays, lighters, and tobacco.
Drink plenty of fluids, and keep a glass of water, a sugar-free drink and sip it steadily, trying different flavours.
Get more active, walk instead of using the car and try the stairs instead of the lift.
Change your routine, and try to avoid the shops where you usually buy cigarettes, and avoid smoking areas.
Treat yourself; use the money you are saving by not smoking to buy something special that you would not usually have.
Be careful what you eat, try not to snack on fatty, sugary foods, and try raw vegetables or sugar-free gum.
Take one day at a time, each day without a cigarette is good news for your heart, health, your family and your pocket.
Anxiety and depression
If you are feeling worried, anxious or down, there are many things you can do to help yourself.
Be more active.
Do not withdraw from life, socialise more.
Do not drink too much alcohol. Alcohol is a depressant, drinking will not help you solve your problems, and it could exacerbate your depression.
Have a routine, when people feel down they can get into poor sleeping patterns by staying up late and/or sleeping during the day.
Try to get up at your normal time and stick to your routine.
Not having a routine can affect your eating, try to eat regularly and have a balanced diet.
Talk with each other, take time, and genuinely listen.
Listen with your ears and your heart, ask questions, and share information.
Keep expectations realistic.
Be dependable, healthy relationships requiring trust and respect.
Argue fairly, do not criticise, do not assume things, and make time to talk.
Be prepared to admit you are wrong and to say sorry.
Show your warmth and ‘emotional understanding’.
Keep your relationship balanced, work, rest and play.
Be prepared to ask for help when you need it.
New Year’s resolution
Pick one main resolution and focus on that.
Changing habits and behaviours take a lot of energy, so concentrate all your efforts on the one thing that matters the most.
Keep it up! Research shows it takes three weeks to form a good habit.
Set yourself a goal to keep track of progress; one that is achievable and measurable. For instance, ‘losing weight’ is not enough, put a target on it, how much and by when.
Tell people, sharing your goal with others increases the chances of you keeping your promise.
Happy New Year