1. Tea off in the morning
Hot tea can slash your risk of kidney cancer by 15 percent, according to a review in the International Journal of Cancer. Try pu-erh tea, which is better than green or black tea at preventing DNA damage.
2. Sleep smarter
Too much sleep, or not enough of it, can kill you. A British study found that getting more than 9 hours of sack time a night, or less than 6, doubles your risk of an early death from any cause. Aim for 7 to 8 hours a night.
3. Pop in your lenses post-shower
Soaping up while wearing your contacts can expose your eyes to infection-causing waterborne microbes, say University of Illinois at Chicago researchers.
4. Drink wine, stay lean
Polyphenols, the compounds found in red wine, help your body block fat absorption, an Israeli study found. Red-wine marinades work, too.
5. Lose the lint
Taking 2 seconds to empty the lint trap in your clothes dryer can prevent you from being one of the 315 dryer-fire victims each year in the United States.
6. Check your neck
An American Journal of Medicine study found that a mildly underactive thyroid can boost your heart-disease risk by 65 percent. A quick blood test can assess your level of thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH).
7. Lean back
Parking your torso at a 90-degree angle strains your spine, say Scottish and Canadian researchers. Instead, give your chair the La-Z-Boy treatment and recline the seat back slightly. The ideal angle is 45 degrees off vertical.
8. Scent your air safely
Some air fresheners contain phthalates, compounds that may disrupt hormone processes, Natural Resources Defense Council testing reveals. Stick with Febreze Air Effects and Renuzit Subtle Effects.
9. Boost your defenses
An Archives of Internal Medicine review reports that 400 IU of vitamin D a day reduces your risk of an early death by 7 percent. Try Carlson’s vitamin D (carlsonlabs.com).
10. Skip the spray
Using household spray cleaners just once a week increases your risk of an asthma attack by 76 percent, say Spanish researchers. Use wipes instead.
11. Steam your broccoli
Italian researchers recently discovered that steaming broccoli increases its concentration of glucosinolates (compounds found to fight cancer) by 30 percent. Boiling actually lowers the levels.
12. Stretch it out
Genes in your body linked to heart disease, diabetes, and obesity can be “turned on” if you sit for hours on end, reports a study in Diabetes. Hit the “off” button by taking hourly laps during TV, book, and Web sessions.