YEAR-END plans

STEPS FOR BETTER FINANCIAL AND PHYSICAL HEALTH IN 2022

BY DAVID BUICE

Another challenging year is winding down, and while the concerns of the pandemic aren’t over, we’ve at least managed to return to a degree of normality. With hopes for a healthier New Year ahead, this is a great time to think about things you might do now and in the coming months to promote and safeguard your personal health in 2022.


HEALTH INSURANCE


If you have health insurance through your employer, spend time examining your plan’s benefits during open enrollment to determine if an alternate plan might better serve your needs. Also, check with your human resources department about any wellness incentives your company may offer. About 75% of employers offer wellness programs, and once you know the incentives offered, you can make plans to earn some cash rewards in 2022.


SPECIAL SAVINGS ACCOUNTS


If you haven’t done so, consider establishing a health savings account (HSA) or a flexible spending account to help meet medical expenses in 2022. Both reduce your taxable income, but unlike an HSA, funds in an FSA don’t roll over into the next year. So, if you currently have unspent funds in an FSA, order some new glasses or contact lenses, or you might schedule that dental appointment you’ve been putting off.


HEALTH ADVICE FROM THE CDC


Beyond these health-related financial steps, here are some recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to promote your good health in 2022 and beyond.


FLU SHOT


There’s still time to get your annual flu shot which is the best way to protect against this perennial threat.


SLEEP


Adults need at least seven hours of sleep a night, and for healthier sleep, be consistent. Try to go to bed and get up at the same time, even on weekends. Unfortunately, about one in three adults don’t get enough sleep, which is linked to several serious diseases and conditions. These include type 2 diabetes, heart disease, obesity, and depression. One tip for better sleep: Stop using your electronic devices for an hour before going to bed.


EAT HEALTHILY


Try to improve your diet by eating more healthy fats like olive oil, nuts, seeds, certain types of fish, and avocado. Limit daily salt consumption to 2,300 mg (one teaspoon), and consume more fiber, including fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, and peas.


MOVE MORE


Adults need 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise weekly. That’s 30 minutes, five days a week. You can break the 30 minutes into shorter daily segments, always remembering that some movement is better than none at all.


With these words, we wish you a prosperous and healthy 2022.



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