By Doctor Seibel – HouseCall®

Everyone wants to develop new healthy habits. But for most people, changing old habits and creating new ones is hard work. But small changes can make a really big difference. Here are 5 simple steps you can start doing today to improve your health.

1.      Drink one less soda or sweetened drink per day.
Just drinking one less soda or sweetened drink each day will allow you to lose 10 pounds in one year. Its that simple. Most Americans are drinking nearly 60 gallons of soda yearly. Even the diet sodas arent ideal. The artificial sugar in those drinks fools your body into secreting more insulin, a hormone produced in the pancreas that is designed to transfer sugar from the bloodstream into your cells. Without the sugar to transfer, the extra insulin causes an increase in the amount of fat that is stored in your abdomen.

2.      Add one fruit or vegetable per day to your diet.
Both the American Cancer Society and the American Heart Association recommend eating at least 5 fruits and or vegetables daily. They help lower the risk of both cancer and heart disease. I know not everyone loves the taste of fruits and vegetables. But here is a trick. Try tasting the new one at least 12 times. Even if you only eat one bite, repeating the tasting allows almost everyone to learn to like a new taste. Try it. You may be surprised that youve found a new great dish that you really enjoy and is great for your health. Just adding one fruit or vegetable daily can make a difference. For a change, you can snack on a handful of walnuts. Theyre full of omega-3 fatty acids and really good for your heart, joints and brain.

3.      Move more.
You dont have to run a marathon to benefit from exercise. And getting started exercising can be tricky. So here is a trick to jump-start your exercise habit. Just park a little further from the door you plan to enter. Or walk up one flight of stairs or down two instead of taking an elevator. Try walking up the escalator. When youre on the phone, dont sit down. Stand and keep moving. At work, make your meetings walking meetings. Ask the other person to go for a walk and youll be amazed how pleasant the meeting will seem. Just move. It all ads up. Eventually, you can work your way up to 10,000 steps each day. To see how many steps you already are taking, buy a pedometer. It counts your steps and usually costs between $10 and $25.

4.      Find Quiet Time in your day.
Lets face it. We are all living hectic lives that never seem to slow down. Once or twice a day, find a quiet spot in a pleasant location. Take a slow deep breath through your nose, hold it for 5 seconds, and let it out slowly through your mouth. Doing that for even one minute will begin to relax you. Work your way up to 5 or 10 minutes once or twice daily. Youll be amazed at how relaxed you feel. If you are a smoker, inhale only air and leave out the cigarette. This is smoke free quiet time.

5.      Improve your sleep.
Starting 30 minutes before your bedtime, turn off all electronics. Find a quiet spot and either read a book, listen to relaxing music, or talk with friends or family. Its a great way to settle down and get ready for bed and it will likely help you drift off to sleep. Sleep not only keeps you rested, it also helps control your weight. While we are sleeping, hormones are produced that curb our appetites and keep us from feeling hungry. Ever think sleep was an important part of your weight control? It is.

These 5 tips are something everyone can do. Theyre simple and they will make a great difference in getting your health jump started toward improvement. For a free download of a relaxing bedtime song, go to Ive made one of my original songs, Sun Ra Lullaby, available for you to help you relax as you drift off to sleep. Its off my award winning Lullabies for Kids of All Ages CD. Its not just for kids. Enjoy!

Machelle  Seibel, MD


It is a real pleasure to contribute a regular article to Families Online Magazine. Over the past 30 years I’ve had the privilege of providing care to over 10,000 women. I’ve helped them face their challenges, answered their questions, and heard the frustrations they deal with as they transition from their reproductive years to and through menopause.

As a result, my goal is to share the wisdom I’ve gained that applies directly to women’s health and menopause, or provide insights that can be of help with their families. Some articles will be on things that are ongoing health and wellness topics, and others will be comments or perspectives on important issues you notice in the news.

You will find my two most recent books helpful. They are Eat to Defeat Menopause and Save Your Life: What to do in a Medical Emergency. Click their titles now to learn more.

My websites are & There are many FREE downloads, songs, videos, eBooks and other useful content that I hope will help you stay well. My comments here aren’t intended to take the place of your healthcare provider. If you have a medical problem, be sure to ask your doctor.

If you have a topic you want me to cover, drop me a note at [email protected] and I’ll do my best to cover it for you. Receive my content-rich FREE NEWSLETTER at


Editor’s Note: Do not consider medical editorial reviews, news items and other general information found in any Families Online Magazine medical or natural health columns as a prescription, medical advice or an endorsement for any treatment or procedure. Always seek any medical advice from your doctor. Medical editorial reviews and other news items that you read about may or may not be appropriate for your particular health problem or concern. Always refer these matters to your physician for clarification and determination. Any information provided in may be controversial, totally unrelated to your own situation, even harmful if taken merely at face value without appropriate evaluation of your specific condition, and therefore must be considered simply to be an editorial review, a news review or a general medical information review and not as relating to your specific condition or as information for diagnosis, evaluation or treatment of your specific condition.


Dr. Charles Glassman

Charles F. Glassman, MD, FACP - has practiced general internal medicine, for over 20 years.  Dr. Glassman specializes in personalized, patient focused care, with an emphasis on wellness and prevention. He approaches medicine in an integrative manner, looking carefully at all traditionally approved methods while recognizing the power of unconventional therapies. Dr. Glassman has repeatedly earned National and Regional Top Doctor and Patient Choice Awards. His new service, Coach MD blends the knowledge and experience of a caring medical doctor with the passion and guidance of a life coach.

He is the author of the critically acclaimed book Brain Drain, which helps explain and fix self-sabotage. It is the winner of the 2011 Independent Publisher's Award and 2011 Eric Hoffer Award as the best Self-Help and Health book, 2010 Pinnacle Book Award for best Self-Help Book, and 2009 LA Book Festival Best Spirituality Book.

To new subscribers on his website, he is now offering his free, new EBook, Destiny Diet. Weekly, Dr. Glassman hosts Medicine on the Cutting Edge, which gives a voice to pioneers in medical research and development. Dr. Glassman lives with his family in Rockland County, NY.
Dr. Charles GlassmanHouseCall® Medical Advice ColumnHealthBy Doctor Seibel - HouseCall® Everyone wants to develop new healthy habits. But for most people, changing old habits and creating new ones is hard work. But small changes can make a really big difference. Here are 5 simple steps you can start doing today to...Parenting Advice| Family Fun Activities for Kids