What's your favorite vice? Alcohol, coffee, cigarettes, or maybe the container of chocolate chip cookies beckoning from the kitchen? We know they're bad for us, but oh, the cravings.
We love our vices because they often make us feel good and they are part of our daily routine. Curbing just two -- such as coffee and cigarettes -- will garner you healthy benefits. Here's what you can expect from curbing caffeine and nicotine:
- The National Coffee Association reports that an average American consumes more than three cups of coffee every day. While caffeine hasn't been linked to cancer risk, drinking more than four cups of caffeinated beverages a day may raise your risk of heart problems. Caffeine addicts are also at risk for osteoporosis, high blood pressure, digestive problems and, to no one's surprise, sleep problems. Kick the habit and kick these potential problems to the curb.
- Becoming a former smoker makes a difference. By stopping smoking, former smokers reduce their risk of heart and lung diseases, gum disease and dental problems (including tooth loss), impotence and fertility problems as well as their incidence of cancer. Women who quit smoking lower their risk of dying from coronary heart disease by 47 percent within five years of cessation.
Of course, if you don't smoke or drink caffeinated beverages, you're bound to have a few other vices to curb. Maybe you have a sweet tooth, overspend, sleep too much or exercise too little. Whatever they are, try curbing a couple for a healthier new year.