This January, you’re probably like many Americans looking for a New Year’s resolution. Well, if achieving those washboard abs or climbing Mount Everest isn’t anything new to you, then maybe getting a new hobby is the thing to do! Someone once said to “find three hobbies you love: one to make you money, one to keep you in shape, and one to be creative.”
Three hobbies might sound like a lot to take on right now, but gaining just one fun hobby is much better than none. A hobby can have both physical and mental benefits to your body (obviously, if your chosen activity is running or crossword puzzles), but the mere act of engaging in a hobby can be beneficial as well.
In one 13-year study, scientists found that taking up a hobby reduced one’s risk of developing depressive symptoms by about a third, and, if they had depressive symptoms upon starting, were three times as likely to recover! Additionally, a hobby can help reduce our stress levels. Having a consistent activity to turn to is a great way to combat stress and take your mind off the more pressing concerns of daily life like work or paying bills. Helping reduce stress has many benefits on our bodies, like lowering blood pressure and boosting our immune system.
Can’t wait to get started on your new hobby, but just can’t decide which ones to try? Start with what sounds fun, and keep looking if one doesn’t interest you – there’s no shortage of potential activities to take up. Love to challenge your mind? Try doing Sudoku or play chess online. Love to challenge your body? Try some yoga, or get yourself that new bike you’ve secretly been eyeing. Have a creative eye? Try painting or learn an instrument, or even try getting a little creative with your home-cooked meals. There are millions of healthy, delicious recipes online! Here, we’ll give you your first one now (see recipe of the month below).
Sources: 1. Corbley, A (2020). Taking up Hobbies can Prevent – or Reduce Symptoms of – Depression by One-Third. Good News Network. https://www.goodnewsnetwork.org/hobbies-can-prevent-or-reduce-depression-by-a-third/ 2. Kettering (2019). Why Hobbies are Important. Kettering Global. https://online.kettering.edu/news/2019/04/15/why-hobbies-are-important
Check out these online resources and smartphone apps!
- Looking for a place to go out and hike and get in nature? Try All Trails or Komoot!
- Can’t get out of the house to stay fit? Don’t worry, we’ve got you here with Down Dog.
- Check out this list of hobby ideas and see what sparks excitement in you.
- Need help around the kitchen? Use Big Oven for help with your meal prep, grocery lists, finding recipes, and more!
Curious about more tips to protect your identity? Watch this video from the Federal Trade Commission!
QUITTING TOBACCO — Healthy New Year and a Healthy New You!
Benefits for a Healthy Life
Quitting tobacco is the single most important thing you can do for your health. That’s why we’ve put together some tobacco cessation resources to support your efforts and help you kick the habit.
Programs available to the general public:
- 1-800-QUIT-NOW — Calling this toll-free number will connect you directly to your states quitline. All states have quitlines in place with trained coaches who provide information and help with quitting.
- SmokeFree Gov— This website provides information and professional assistance that can help to support both your immediate and long-term needs as you become, and remain, tobacco free.
- FreedomFromSmoking.org — The American Lung Association’s Freedom From Smoking program is a proven way to quit smoking—and stay quit—even if you’ve tried before and went back to smoking.
- Kaiser Members: Freedom from Tobacco – Online classes and resources, No fee required, No referral required.
Do you want to have more energy, save money, and improve your health? Quit tobacco! Get support from your peers as you set a quit date and discuss successful, easy techniques to stay quit in this workshop. Kaiser Permanente members can register for this program online in our appointment center. Please check with your local area to see whether this workshop is currently being offered.
Log on to your carrier’s website for additional health and wellness resources..
- Log on to www.anthem.com/ca
- Click Health & Wellness
- Log on to www.kp.org
- Click Health & Wellness
Smokeless tobacco products are NOT a safe alternative.
Smokeless tobacco products can contain about 30 cancer-causing substances that can cause serious health problems. And like cigarettes, smokeless tobacco also contains nicotine, which can cause you to become addicted.
10 Tips for Quitting Tobacco
- Set a quit date. Mark it on a calendar.
- Use over-the-counter nicotine patches, gum, or lozenges as directed.
- Ask your doctor about prescribed medicines that can help you quit.
- Get rid of all your cigarettes, cigars, matches, lighters, ashtrays, and tobacco triggers.
- Take part in a tobacco cessation program.
- Rely on programs that have helped people quit using tobacco.
- When you get the urge to smoke or dip/chew tobacco, breathe deeply through your mouth. Hold your breath for three seconds. Slowly exhale through pursed lips to make a whisper sound.
- Try sugarless gum or mints and toothpicks to keep your mouth busy. Hold a paper clip or stress ball in your hand.
- Talk to nonsmoking family members and friends for support.
- Put the money you used to spend on tobacco in a “ciggy’’ bank. See how much money you save!
Quitting tobacco will benefit your health, your life and your loved ones. Deciding to quit is a big step, but following through is just as important.
Fitness and Exercise
Fitness Tips and Resources from Kaiser
- Health Classes and Programs – to learn more, click here
- Class Pass – Fitness industry leader ClassPass makes it easier for you to work out from anywhere. ClassPass partners with 40,000 gyms and studios around the world, offering a range of classes including yoga, dance, cardio, boxing, Pilates, boot camp, and more. With this ClassPass offer, Kaiser Permanente members can get:
- Unlimited on-demand video workouts at no cost
- Reduced rates on livestream and in-person fitness classes
Fitness Tips and Resources from Anthem
Welcome to Principal, Covenant Care’s new financial wellbeing and 401K partner
Free Webinar Series – Webinars are held the third Wednesday of every month.
Financial education in under 30 minutes
Your financial goals are unique and so is your path to get there. Our award-winning* webinar series is here to help along the way. In less than 30 minutes, you can learn more about a financial topic that matters to you.
Register for an upcoming webinar or catch up on your time with a library of replays.
This month’s Webinar
Wednesday, January 19, 2022
11:00 – 11:30 p.m. PST
Saving and spending strategies nearing retirement
You’ve been building your financial foundation for years. So when it’s finally time to retire, replacing your work paycheck with a retirement income paycheck—and maintaining a sense of security—requires a solid strategy. Which accounts will you draw from first? How much will you need each month? And how could taxes impact your withdrawals? Join us for the January webinar to learn distribution options and put together a smart withdrawal plan.
Cost: Free, Language: English, Webinar ID: 3f37e18ad99f , Dial-in Info: Dial-in Number: +1 (312) 248-9348, Dial-in ID: 302884, Dial-in Passcode: 4182
Winner of the 2020 IMEA Star Awards, Participant Webinars, Experiential Education category, large asset level.
Topics and dates are subject to change.
Insurance products and plan administrative services are provided through Principal Life Insurance Company, a member of the Principal Financial Group®, Des Moines, Iowa 50392.
PT436A-09 | © 2020 Principal Financial Services, Inc. | 12/2020 | 1435367-122020
Recipe of the Month
No-Bake Sweet and Salty Trail Mix Granola Bars
- ½ cup brown rice syrup
- 2 tbsp sunflower seed butter
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- ¾ cup old-fashioned oats
- ½ cup crispy rice cereal
- ½ cup pretzels, crushed*
- ¼ tsp salt
- ½ cup dried fruit (raisins, cranberries, etc.)
- ½ cup pumpkin seeds
- 1/3 cup chocolate chips
*Use gluten-free pretzels to make this snack gluten free!
- Line an 8×8 in (20×20 cm) baking pan with a sheet of aluminum foil or parchment paper, leaving a few inches of overhang on the sides to allow for easy removal. Generously spray the foil with cooking spray and set aside.
- Add brown rice syrup, sunflower seed butter, and coconut oil to a microwave-safe bowl and microwave on high until ingredients are fully melted and combined, about one minute. Remove ingredients and allow to cool and thicken.
- Combine remaining ingredients in a large mixing bowl, stirring until evenly distributed. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and mix until fully incorporated.
- Transfer mixture to prepared pan and use a spatula or your hands to spread it evenly, making sure to press down firmly. Cover pan with a sheet of foil and place into the fridge and set at least two hours but preferably overnight. When bars have set, remove from pan using the foil overhang, and use a sharp knife to cut into individual bars. Store bars in the fridge or freezer for best results.
- Calm Meditation App
Free section for all, to access, click here
- Employee Assistance Program (EAP)- from UNUM & Health Advocate. We are here for you 24/7 – 1-800-854-1446; www.unum.com/lifebalance – The EAP can help provide COVID-19 support, grief counseling, stress/anxiety relief, and more, and is available to all employees
- Medical Bill Saver Advantage via your EAP – 1-800-854-1446; www.unum.com/lifebalance and is available to all employees
- For the latest on COVID 19– CDC website at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus
- Financial Education Webinars from your 401K provider. View what’s coming up or watch a replay anytime at Principal.com LearnNowOnDemand
- Kp.org is a valuable resource for information and member communications, as well as a link to any telehealth services. If you have already done so, please register on kp.org. https://healthy.kaiserpermanente.org/register
- Calm Meditation App
Full access free for Kaiser Members click here
Free to Kaiser Permanente members
to help support their emotional well-being.
Members can simply go to kp.org/selfcareapps and click ‘Get Started’ to register and use myStrength on their desktop, tablet or smartphone.
- Class Pass – Learn More
- Kaiser Coronavirus Hotline (available 24/7) – (877) 813-7297. After speaking with a Kaiser Permanente representative, you will be directed to the appropriate care options.
- Kaiser Members- Getting Care: It’s important to contact KP before coming in. Members should call the Appointment and Advice Call Center if they are feeling sick. They will be guided through a specific screening protocol over the phone. Depending on the answers provided, the member will be directed to the most appropriate care, while protecting other members, patients and employees.
- Kaiser Virtual Care – Manage your care with kp.org
No matter what life throws your way, you can connect to care where and when you want it. E-visits, telephone, and video appointments are simple and secure ways to get care and save yourself an office visit. They even be tracked in your electronic health record. All you need is a computer, smartphone, or mobile device. Click here to get access to care.
- Kaiser Members- access to E-visits- Log in at kp.org/appointments or go to Get Care on the KP mobile app
- Member Login
- Anthem Coronavirus Information – www.anthem.com/ca/coronavirus
- Anthem Sydney Care mobile app. Download the Sydney Care mobile app from the App Store or Google Play click here to learn more
- Prevent Diabetes Virtual health coaching through Sydney Health – click here
- Anthem/Aunt Bertha social support services
Our partnership with Aunt Bertha provides you with a solution to help connect you and your family to social services in your communities if you need it. You can find services such as help with food, housing, job training, and transportation by visiting Aunt Bertha and entering your ZIP code.
- Anthem Skill – Ask Alexa for your health plan info.
Get quick, hands-free help with the Anthem Skill. Whether you need a new ID card or get curious if you’re about to reach your deductible, just say the words, “Alexa, ask Anthem…” to get quick answers about your health plan. The Anthem Skill works through Alexa-ready devices, like an Amazon Echo or on your mobile device using the Amazon Alexa app.
Enable the Anthem Skill today!
Live your best life!
Senior Director, Human Resources and Benefits
Covenant Care California, LLC