By: Jana L. Davidson, Education Content Specialist for the Progressive Agriculture Foundation
As we celebrate the beginning of 2017, many of us will embark on various New Year’s resolutions. From goals to achieve, bad habits to break and diets to start, some resolutions will be short lived with few that will be followed through until year’s end. Let’s ring in 2017 with resolutions that stick and keep safety and health in mind all the time!
Begin the year by making healthy choices when it comes to diet and exercise. Lead by example and promote an active lifestyle to children. Exercising as a family is a great way to keep all members healthy. Benefits of physical activity are improved mood, elevated energy levels, better sleep, and improved strength and coordination. Replace sugary drinks with water and be sure to drink water plenty of it throughout the day. Water helps your body regulate temperature, helps digest & absorb food, and transports oxygen and nutrients to cells. Getting adequate sleep is also very important to overall health. Adults need 7 to 8 hours of sleep per night & children need 9 to 10 hours of sleep per night.
Another healthy resolution is to follow good hand washing practices to keep germs at bay. Proper handwashing is a critical component in reducing the spread of germs. You should wash your hands frequently throughout the day especially after using the bathroom, sneezing or coughing, petting animals, and handling raw or spoiled foods. Always be sure to wash your hands before eating or preparing food. Hand sanitizers are great for use as a back-up plan if handwashing facilities are not available, but should not replace washing regularly with soap and water.
From helmets and hearing protection to sunscreen and wide brim hats, commit to wearing personal protective equipment all the time to prevent health issues not just today, but later on in life such as head or brain injuries, hearing loss and skin cancer. Also, be proactive as you start a new year by assuring your home, farm and equipment is equipped with working smoke detectors, fire extinguishers and first aid kits.
Finally, make your New Year’s resolution to be part of one of more than 400 Progressive Agriculture Safety Days® that will be offered throughout North America this year. Progressive Agriculture Safety Days® teach children in rural communities about a variety of safety and health topics. For more information on safety or for details about hosting, donating, volunteering or attending at a Progressive Agriculture Safety Day®, visit www.progressiveag.org or call us toll-free at 888-257-3529.
Photo: Many Progressive Agriculture Safety Days® throughout North America offer a healthy lifestyles component like this event held Iowa. With the use of Glo Germ and an ultraviolet light, participants identify the importance of proper hand washing.