Which is Worse?

CN Digital StudioCN Digital StudioSarah-Jane Bedwell
SELF


Life's little health dilemmas, solved

Missing a workout and not making up for it VS. Pushing myself extra hard the next time I hit the gym


Your body needs time off, so don't sweat it: Chill days let muscles repair, a crucial step in the strength-building process, explains Natalie Wessel, a personal trainer in Portland, Oregon. Plus, pushing yourself too hard can lead to injury. "Overdoing it abuses muscles, ligaments and tendons, which can result in sprains, tears and strains," Wessel says. Obviously it's good to be consistent-but if you miss one session, you won't gain weight or lose strength. Look, enjoy the hooky day, and do your next workout as planned.

See more: 20 Superfoods for Weight Loss

Not eating veggies (hate the taste!) VS. Drowning them in butter and cheese

Adding fat to your greens actually enhances your body's ability to soak up fat-soluble nutrients, such as lycopene and beta-carotene, a study from Purdue University notes. But a vat o' butter? Still can't justify that. Go for 2 tablespoons of goat cheese; 1 tbsp pine nuts or pesto; or marinara with a sprinkle of Parm, says Rachel Beller, R.D., author of Eat to Lose, Eat to Win. You'll get the health benefits of veggies (and big flavor) without turning them into a calorie bomb.

See more: Lose 2 Pounds a Week!

Being lazy about washing VS. Abusing hand sanitizer

You may have heard some bad stuff about the antibacterial chemical triclosan, but it's found in antibacterial soaps, not your hand sanitizer. And although the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says soap and water is the best way to fight germs, it does recommend sanitizer as a close second-good news if there's no sink nearby. "In general, keeping your hands clean is really how to prevent the spread of illness to yourself and others," says Shira Doron, M.D., an infectious-disease specialist at Tufts Medical Center in Boston. In fact, the worst side effect is probably dry hands, so stash a travel-sized moisturizer in your bag, stat!

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