4 ways to be a healthier online student in 2017

Posted at 1:20 PM, Jan 19, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-19 15:20:49-05

In honor of Denver7’s New Year New You Expo, sponsored by Colorado State University-Global Campus, we’re giving you four tips for making 2017 the healthiest and happiest. Get exactly what you need to look, feel, and live better at the free New Year New You Expo on January 28 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Colorado Mills. CSU-Global will be onsite providing free 10 minute career coaching sessions where you can get one-on-one advice on your best path for success.

Whether you’re an online student, working professional, parent, or looking for your next big break, 2017 is the year you can accomplish your goals. Read on for tips to be healthier and happier in the new year.

1: Eat every 2-3 hours

It’s easy to get caught up in daily responsibilities and forget to eat. Other people skip meals trying to lose weight. Not only is skipping meals not beneficial for weight loss, but it can result in a variety of negative consequences including fatigue, lack of concentration, increased stress, low blood sugar, and weight gain.

Instead, eat regular meals and snacks and enjoy the following benefits:

?     Increased energy

?     Improved mood

?     Focused concentration

?     Increased metabolism

2017 takeaways:

?     Eat three meals and two snacks every day.

?     Eat a combination of healthy fats (avocado, butter, coconut oil), natural carbohydrates. (fruits, vegetables, legumes), and protein (meat, poultry, seafood, eggs, nuts).

?     Prepare meals and snacks ahead of time and in bulk.

?     Set alarms reminding you to eat throughout the day.

2: Practice good eye health

In our digital age, the average American adult spends ten hours a day on the computer. If you’re an online student or work long hours you might blame the screen for strained sight, neck and shoulder pain, and eye irritation.

In fact, a recent study found that just two hours on a computer caused a significant increase in eye-related pain and tiredness, blurred vision, and gritty, dry and tearing eyes.

2017 takeaways:

?     Take a 20-20-20 break: For every 20 minutes you’re on the computer, focus on an object 20 feet away for 20 seconds.

?     Work in a well-lit room.

?     Adjust your computer’s brightness settings to be the brightest glowing thing in the room.

?     Sit a full arm’s length away from your computer screen.



3: Take breaks

There are a variety of studies touting the best times to take breaks from your school or professional work. There are also a range of activities recommended, from walking or exercising, to meditating, daydreaming, or looking at photos of baby animals. Regardless of the specifics, the bottom line is the same: take breaks.

Not only does your body need a break from sitting, but your mind needs a break from concentrating. Stretch your muscles, take a short walk, roll your neck — or whatever you think your body needs. Stretch your mind by shifting gears; work on something personal, check social media, read an article, or watch the latest viral video.

2017 takeaways:

?     Change your environment during breaks to fully disconnect.

?     Determine your work threshold by taking note of how long you’re able to concentrate. Use this information to plan breaks in between tasks.

?     Set alarms reminding you to break throughout the day.

4: Get the sleep you need

Of course you’ve heard this recommendation before, but do you know how important sleep is to your overall goals? Whether you want to earn your degree, land your dream job, be super mom, or wake up every morning feeling awesome, sleep will help you get there.

Getting the right amount of rest each night, which is ideally seven to nine hours for adults 26 to 64 years old, can provide the following benefits:

?     Increased creativity

?     Heightened athleticism

?     Longer attention span

?     Weight loss

?     Reduced stress

2017 takeaways:

?     Create a bedtime routine that tells your body, “it’s time to rest.”

?     Stick to a sleep schedule by going to bed and waking up at the same time every day.

?     Turn off all screens at least one hour before going to sleep.

?     Stop drinking caffeine after 2 p.m.