Make Your New Year Resolution to Be a Healthier You!

It seems like every year we all make a great start to the new year. How soon we run out of steam and those new walking shoes gather dust, the healthy produce wilts, and we end up on the couch once again. Follow the tips below for ways to follow a healthier routine without changing your lifestyle too much. Continue reading “Make Your New Year Resolution to Be a Healthier You!” »

Maintaining a Gluten-Free Lifestyle

Almost everyone is overwhelmed by the challenge of eating gluten-free. At first, it feels like the diet eliminates all the food you love or have emotional connections with. You might even feel paranoid — like you’re surrounded by gluten and nothing is safe. It takes awhile to begin to feel comfortable with the diet and confident about your food choices. Continue reading “Maintaining a Gluten-Free Lifestyle” »

How an Overactive or Underactive Thyroid Affects You

Do you feel inexplicably energized, even at the end of a long, tiring day? Or, perhaps you feel lethargic and fatigued, but you can’t pinpoint why you should constantly be feeling that way. If you answered yes to either question, then you may be experiencing problems with an overactive thyroid or an underactive thryoid. It’s a problem that is more common than you might think.

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4 Essential Lab Tests for Women of All Ages

No one enjoys having their blood drawn, but blood testing provides essential information. By looking at the results of blood testing, experienced technicians or your doctor can understand how well your body is performing, and make recommendations for further screenings. Regardless of their age, every woman should undergo four blood tests. Continue reading “4 Essential Lab Tests for Women of All Ages” »

How a Daily Walk Could Improve Your Health (Strenuous Exercise Not Required!)

Think you don’t have time to get healthy?

Contrary to popular belief, a strenuous workout isn’t necessary for good health. A daily walk may be all you need to lose weight and even live longer.

Here’s how a quick journey around the block might help you get healthier!

Continue reading “How a Daily Walk Could Improve Your Health (Strenuous Exercise Not Required!)” »

How Packing Your Own Lunch Improves Your Health

If you work, then you know how hectic life is. Lunch is frequently an afterthought, a hasty bite picked up at a fast food place.

However, those greasy burgers are not good for your health. That’s why there’s a growing movement toward bringing a lunch to work. It’s not just a trend that employers should embrace — although lower healthcare costs are nothing to balk at — it’s also something that individuals should consider to improve their health.

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Methods of Getting “Healthy” Aren’t Always so Healthy

The average person puts a lot of emphasis on weight when it comes to being healthy and fit. However, weight is not a one-size-fits-all solution. Rather, the idea of an individual’s healthy weight tends to be a much better measure. When people focus on being healthy, they have better results in the long run that those who focus on attaining a certain weight at any cost. Tomorrow is Women’s Healthy Weight Day, which makes it the perfect time to discuss the different between being healthy and simply losing weight.

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How to Keep Your New Year’s Health Resolutions

Another new year means another round of New Year’s resolutions. On January first each year, millions of people vow to lose weight or watch less TV or call Grandma once a week. However, how many of us actually succeed in committing to these resolutions for the next 365 days? In fact, statistics have shown that only about 8% of people who make New Year’s resolutions actually achieve those resolutions. These tips will help you stay on track with your New Year’s health resolutions.

Choose a Clear, Simple Goal

Many people make the mistake of making a long list of New Year’s resolutions. The problem is that a long to-do list can be daunting, and the longer the list is the less likely you are to stick to it. Rather than choosing a bunch of different goals, focus on one simple goal that you will actually be able to keep. For example, you might have the goal to lose weight, exercise more, or eat healthier. With your one goal in mind, you can then create a plan to incorporate healthy changes into your everyday life.

Make a Realistic Plan

Once you have your goal set, it’s essential to create a realistic plan for how to achieve that goal. For example, if your goal is to exercise more, set a weekly exercise schedule involving group classes, taking a run around your neighborhood, or even completing at-home exercise videos. Creating a schedule of weekly workouts will give you a viable plan for actually achieving your goal. Unhealthy behaviors develop over time, but so do healthy behaviors. The key is implementing small changes into your everyday life that won’t be too difficult or daunting to keep.

Have a Support System

Having a support system around while you are working on keeping a New Year’s resolution is extremely helpful. One idea is to find a friend or family member who wants to take on the same goal. That way you can support each other and keep each other accountable for keeping up with the plan. It’s also important to have a support system who will encourage you to keep up with your resolution even when it’s hard or you feel like giving up. Just because you messed up by skipping your exercise routine for a few days or ate a few too many cookies yesterday, that doesn’t mean you can’t get back on track and reach your health goals for the new year. Having a good support system will help remind you of that.

Healthy Lifestyle Help with Test Smartly Labs

A key step in improving your health is understanding your current health and tracking progress. Test Smartly Labs provides basic health testing, including cholesterol, diabetes, and heart health testing to help you stay on track. To get started, find your nearest location today!

Sit Down Restaurants Can be Just as Bad as Fast Food

Think you’re cutting calories by avoiding fast food and eating a sit-down dinner? Not so fast.
According to recent research, people eat more salt and cholesterol in sit-down settings than fastfood restaurants.
While fast food is certainly not a healthy option, people should be careful not to assume sit-downs are much better.

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What You Should Know About the FDA Trans Fat Ban

Last week the U.S. Food and Drug Administration made a move to ban trans fats from processed foods. Wondering what this ban means for you and the future of the food industry? We have all the information you need:

What are trans fats?Fast Food

First of all, some may be wondering what trans fats are, and why they even matter. Trans fats often come from hydrogenated oils, which are the primary source for artificial trans fats in processed foods. These are used in processed food to improve taste, hold artificial coloring, and help foods last longer on the shelf. Trans fats are considered a major health concern in America as they have been found to be linked to heart disease. In fact, the Center for Science in the Public Interest says they cause 50,000 fatal heart attacks every year. They also raise the levels of harmful LDL cholesterol, which can build up in people’s arteries, leading to even more health concerns.

What does the FDA’s trans fat ban mean for the food industry and the consumer?

This ban is not a sudden decision; on the contrary, it has been coming on gradually for several years. In 2006, New York became the first major U.S. city to ban the use of trans fats in restaurants and bakeries. That same year the FDA started to require food companies to include trans fat information in their nutrition labels. More recently in 2013, the FDA declared that partially hydrogenated oils were not thought to be safe for human health. Over the years, many major food manufacturers have voluntarily removed trans fats from products, which has helped to reduce their overall consumption by about 80% from 2003 to 2012, according to the FDA.

Last week’s decision by the FDA give food companies even more time to comply with the new regulations to eliminate the use of trans fats in common foods, such as popcorn, baked goods, and margarine. Over the next few years, consumers can expect to see some changes in the food labels, and probably in the taste, of these common items. The elimination of trans fats from many of America’s most popular foods has the potential to have huge positive effects on public health. Dr. Georges Benjamin, the executive director of the American Public Health Association, estimated that over 20 years the economic benefits of banning partially hydrogenated oils could be between $117 billion and $242 billion.

How can you keep your heart healthy?

If you are worried about your heart health or cholesterol levels, a good first step is to get cholesterol and heart health testing. Test Smartly Labs is experienced in this type of testing and has many locations across the country. To schedule a test, find your nearest Test Smartly Labs location here. Making good choices for your health is one of the most important things you can do for yourself.