Thursday, May 29, 2008

Want A Healthy Summer? Act Like You're 5!

All the things that made you feel great when you were a kid still work now.
  • MAKE A PLAYDATE - Call or invite your funniest friend to brunch-laughter can make you healthier, says Dr. Lee Berk. How? It can lower your blood pressure, cut stress hormone levels, reduce pain, relax muscles, boost immunity and pump you full of endorphins! Whew!
  • HAVE A TREAT - Remember morning and afternoon snack time? You might want to pencil it in again. Waiting too long to eat between meals can cause blood sugar to drop, setting off cravings and causing you to overindulge later. The biggest cause of overeating is undereating.
  • GROW YOUR BRAIN - Kids do it every day, and should we: Learning something new (or wrestling with a tough Sudoku) is like mental cardio. After just 2 weeks of memory exercises and puzzles, participants in a study performed significantly better on oral exams-and get this, their brains actually used less energy while thinking.
  • GO ON VACATION - No matter how busy you are, research shows you've got to get away at least once a year. A large study found that women who rarely vacation were seven times more likely to have a heart attack than those who took 2 or more breaks a year. Stress control is crucial to heart health, say experts.