BUST STRESS, INSTANTLY! — You know that a long walk or a soak in the tub helps ease stress, but what to do when you’re in a super-hurry? Take a whiff of citrus. Peeling that orange on your desk releases linalool, a compound that studies show lowers stress. Eating it won’t hurt either: Other research shows that vitamin C helps protect your body from the effects of stress.
BURN MORE FAT IN LESS TIME — That’s right—it’s possible with fat-burning, metabolism-boosting intervals, says Gregory Florez, American Council on Exercise spokesperson and health/fitness coach with Fitadvisor.com. “Intersperse your daily walk with one to three minutes of amping up, meaning it’s a little harder and faster. Then dial back for a one-minute recovery phase. Repeat this as many times as you have time for and you will dramatically increase your calorie burn.”
GET GREAT SKIN IN EVERY BITE — All that exfoliating and creaming and dreaming about Botox? Speed up the process by eating whole-grain bread, a good source of B-vitamin biotin, which helps keep skin moist. Breads that contain buckwheat have extra benefits; they include an anti-inflammatory antioxidant called rutin, which can help soothe or combat adult acne.
CLEAN HANDS, QUICK! — You’ve heard that rule about singing “Happy Birthday” twice while you wash your hands to make sure they’re clean. But you can cut that routine short and still stay germ-free—even in flu season! The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends washing with soap and warm water, rubbing hands together for at least 20 seconds and using a paper towel to turn off the faucet in public restrooms.
GET YOUR 5 A DAY AN EASIER WAY — On days when there’s simply no time to eat right, try these shortcuts to fulfilling your quota of fruits and veggies:
Drink low-sodium vegetable juice. Some products contain two servings of veggies.
COOK UP SOME PASTA — fortified with tomato powder or textured veggie protein, like Ronzoni’s Garden Delight Enriched Tomato, Carrot, & Spinach Pasta Blend.
DRESS UP A FROZEN MEAL — Today’s "TV dinners" can be low on the green stuff. If you’re eating a prepared meal, throw in another handful of steamed frozen or fresh veggies.
DRINK YOUR MILK — That daily run can help you lose weight, but so can regularly drinking milk, suggests a new study from Israel. Regardless of what else they ate, study participants who consumed the amount of calcium in about 12 ounces of milk every day for two years lost around 12 pounds. Those those who ate or drank only a half-cup of milk’s worth of calcium only lost five pounds. Experts think calcium may help the body break down fat—just make sure you opt for low-fat instead of full-fat milk.
JUMP YOUR WAY TO BETTER BONES — You know you’re supposed to hit the gym a few times a week for that weight-bearing exercise that’s good for your bones. But here’s a shortcut when a workout’s not in the cards: Simply jump up and down (in your office or while watching TV) 10 to 20 times each day to keep your bones strong. Better bones: done!