An ounce of prevention towards wellness -Learn the simple steps to living a healthier and happier life! Concern over health and how to improve your health has become a topic more and more of us think about and try to implement in our lives. Advances in medicine have helped us live longer lives and have allowed us to overcome some of the ills and infections that used to kill many people. Vaccines have helped prevent illness and death. They have eliminated diseases like smallpox and have helped against rabies, diphtheria and the plague.
However, we have started to incur a new host of health problems due to the length of our life, the processed foods we eat, the fast paced lives we live and the chemicals that pollute our world. Every day we see new commercials on TV about the next great drug that will make your life better or healthier. But do you actually listen to the list of possible side effects. Are these drugs really helping or just creating different problems. Remember, no pharmaceutical company ever made money by curing you quickly so you could stop taking their pills.
Why wait until you feel poorly before you see a doctor that will only work on alleviating your symptoms and not on fixing the underlying problem. Start achieving wellness and begin improving your health before you get to the point you need to see a doctor. Work on improving your overall wellness. As the old adage says “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Of the leading causes of death in the United States, many can be prevented. The likelihood of contracting heart disease, diabetes, and other health issues can be directly impacted by the choices we make every day. The choices about what we put into our bodies and the choices we make that affect our personal environment.
Here are some things you can do to increase your wellness and start down the path to improve your health: Diet and Nutrition – Your diet does a lot in determining your overall health and wellness. What you put into your body does make a difference. “It’s easy to buy into some pretty popular nutrition misconceptions — myths and half-truths that ultimately find us making far fewer healthier food choices than we realize,” says New York University nutritionist Samantha Heller, MS, RD.
Read labels, don’t trust all the advertising and always try to get whole foods and not processed substitutes. The same goes for your supplements. Get those that are made from natural ingredients and aren’t over processed. Every vitamin and mineral and phytochemical in our body works in concert with one another, and it’s easy to knock that balance off. Be sure the supplements you are taking are balanced and introduced to your body in a way that they are usable and work together as nature intended.
Some of the things you want to make sure you get enough of in your diet are fiber, antioxidants, soy, and water. These things along with a well balanced nutritional intake of whole foods and supplements can go a long way in improving health and increasing wellness. Weight – Maintaining a healthy weight is critical to improving health. You don’t have to be as thin as a rail – this is actually just as unhealthy as being overweight – you just need to keep the excess in check.
It all begins with attitude. Start by changing how you feel about yourself, your body and your eating habits. Change to a can do attitude where you start to do what’s right for you. Simple moderate exercise, eating a healthy breakfast (no skipping allowed), reducing your calorie intake by not taking just one more are all small things we can do to get in better health by being at a better weight. Don’t go for the fad diets that don’t work or at best get you to lose weight for a while but then just put it back on later. A slow and steady change will help you lose the weight and keep it off and it will be much healthier for you.
Get plenty of whole foods, protein (quite often a good soy protein can give you what you need without adding fat to your diet) and drink lots of water. Water is critical to the health and wellness of your body. It helps rid you of toxic build up and it is needed for normal cell processes to work. Another side effect of water is that it can make you feel full without adding the calories so you will eat less. Exercise – Aerobic exercise is very important to maintaining your wellness and improving your health. It has been linked to cancer prevention, reduction of osteoporosis, helping with depression, lowering the risk of heart disease and diabetes, and of course obesity and weight control. It can also help with cognitive functions – meaning you can think more clearly and work more efficiently.
Aerobic exercise makes most of us think of joining a gym or having to run several miles every day. This is just not the case. You can keep it very simple and still achieve benefits. Walking is one of the best exercises out there. It is simple, easy on the joints, doesn’t cost us a lot of money and it can be done pretty much anywhere. To get a benefit from walking, you just need to make sure that it is aerobic. That means you want to walk at a pace that leaves you feeling “warm and slightly out of breath”. One good way to start is the 5 out 5 back plan. Just walk 5 minutes away from the house and then you are force to walk 5 minutes back. Increase the time out as your health and fitness increase.
Stress Management – Most of us live with some type of stress every day. It has just become part of our lives. It has also become one reason we don’t always feel our best and why we are susceptible to feeling run down and ‘sick’. Reducing stress can help now and our long term health. Stress keeps our bodies from functioning at their best and slowly wears on us. Find way to relax, to have that ‘me’ time where the pressures of the day can be pushed aside.
Try to simplify your life. Our world has become so fast paced and ‘in your face’ – ‘do it now’ that we just don’t have time to sit and watch the clouds or the rain or…. One simple way to gain a little sanity is to disconnect from the fast pace, try just turning off the cell phone. Just leave it behind for an hour. But, no matter how much we work on getting rid of the stresses in our life there will always be something that causes us stress. Luckily, there are ways to help us overcome the stress nutritionally.
Avoiding Toxins – With all of our advances and science and technology, man has come up with many great things to improve our quality of life. However, we are learning that some of these things that are there to improve actually produce side effects that can hurt us and our health – now and in the future. The EPA has warned that indoor air pollution is more of a concern than the pollution we find outside. Many cleaners as well as skin and beauty products actually contain harmful toxins.
There are companies out there that do produce green cleaners that are safe for people and for the environment. Read labels and know what your beauty and cleaning products contain. of the best ways to maintain your health is to wash your hands. We touch so many different things with our hands things that might have been cleaned with toxins or touched by something unhealthy that by just washing, you can cut down on many unwanted health effects.
Adequate Sleep – Giving your body the sleep it requires is a great way to keep it healthy. During sleep your body regenerates and rejuvenates. It is absolutely imperative to get enough sleep, but getting more doesn’t always mean you are getting better quality sleep.
Quit Smoking – Despite the many warnings and the known health risks smoking is still prevalent around the world. Quitting this habit can not only improve your health drastically and improve your chances of preventing future disease; it can relieve you of a financial burden. Just think if you applied all the money you spend on cigarettes on healthy nutritional supplements how much you could increase your health and wellness.
Its not always the difficult path that is required for change. Quite often making a few simple changes in our lives can make dramatic results.
Think about it!