The start of a new year is a great time to make major changes to your life in the form of resolutions. For many people, the generic New Year’s resolution is to lose weight. This can take the form of promising to hit a specific weight or waist measurement or swearing off all sweets and counting portions.
However, there are several other healthy resolutions you can make that have nothing to do with cutting calories and which may be better for you in the long run. Weight and number related resolutions are concrete and in some ways easier to set as goals, but they often are not as helpful in promoting actual change in habit and lifestyle.
Of course, they still work well for many people. But if you are someone who struggles to keep your resolutions, consider some resolutions that revolve around lifestyle shifts instead.
Here are four of the top New Year’s resolutions you can make for the coming year that don’t involve losing weight.
Eat More Omega-3 Fatty Acids
As you may already know, the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish, nuts, seeds, and certain beans have a wide range of proven health benefits. From reducing inflammation to supporting cardiovascular health, omega-3s are an important component of a healthy diet.
To improve your overall wellness in the coming year, consider including more foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids in your diet or taking an omega-3 supplement. While this may seem like a simple ‘resolution’, remember the simpler they are, the easier they will be to sustain.
The best resolutions are those that require consistency and growth over the course of a year, not sudden changes. The name of the game is endurance, not speed. You could resolve to replace a certain amount of your daily intake with omega-3 fatty acids or resolve to buy less fatty snacks and replace them with seeds and nuts.
Simple ‘switches’ like these will help your body get used to the change. And since you’re not counting portions or cutting out entire food groups like on a diet, the change will be more sustainable.
Improve Your Strength
Instead of working out to lose weight, you may want to consider working out to build muscle and become stronger. Resistance training will make you feel better, enhance your physical abilities and help you achieve a higher level of overall health.
Recent studies have also shown that strength training may contribute to a longer life span, making it even more important to add weight training to your fitness routine.
When your focus is on improving health over losing weight, you can set better concrete goals, such as increasing your lifting weight or muscle mass.
Remember—muscle weighs more than fat, so doing this may, in fact, make you weigh more, even as you become healthier.
Take Better Care of Your Eyes
While you may never think about it, eye health is extremely important. Sitting hunched over at screens all day can take its toll. If you have an indoor job where you’re at a computer all day, consider looking up exercises and ways to rest your eyes.
One principle is to look away from your screen for twenty seconds every twenty minutes. It’s also a good idea to get your eyes checked regularly as you age, especially if you have trouble driving at night.
If you want to improve your health in the coming year, consider visiting an ophthalmology specialist to look into LASIK surgery to correct your blurry vision. Once you do, you’ll be amazed at how much better your overall quality of life is. Eye fatigue can cause headaches, dizziness, and nausea.
Improve Your Skin
If you’re concerned about how you will look as you age, one of the best resolutions you can make is to improve your skincare routine. By eating a more balanced diet, making sure you get plenty of water and washing with a moisturizing cleanser, you can keep your skin looking young and healthy as you get older.
You should also be sure to use a good sunscreen whenever you are outside in intense sunlight, as exposure to UV rays can cause your skin to age prematurely.
These are just a few of the many health-related resolutions you can make that don’t have anything to do with losing weight. By making one or more of these resolutions in the coming year, you can improve your overall physical health and enjoy the benefits of a healthier lifestyle.
Remember— New Year’s resolutions don’t have to dramatically change your life. In fact, the best ones help you make small shifts in the direction you want to go.