Living a well-rounded healthy lifestyle can improve your life. HOPE Healthcare Services has some great tips on how to live a healthy life, including mind and body!
What is a healthy lifestyle?
Most people know, or think they know, what constitutes a healthy lifestyle. The human body was designed to carry us through life, fight off disease, and even keep ourselves safe via human instincts. For all of those to happen, we need to fuel ourselves efficiently. Just as a high performance car cannot reach its full potential when filled with sub-standard gasoline, the human body cannot optimally carry out its duties when fueled with foods that are lacking the proper vitamins and minerals. In addition, we often put things into our bodies that “gum up the works” of our well-oiled machine.
Keeping yourself mentally healthy can make it much easier to eat right and exercise at regular intervals. Things like getting enough sleep can impact mental clarity, which in turn will help you to make better decisions regarding your meals and activities.
4 ways to stay (or start being) healthy
No. 1 – Eat right
Eating right means choosing the proper foods that our bodies are designed to use, with few superfluous calories, fat, salt, and sugars. Lean proteins, like skinless chicken, un-breaded fish, pork loin, and eggs should be a staple in a healthy diet. Proteins are used by the body to build (and repair) tissues such as bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, and blood.
Fruits and vegetables should also be plentiful in your daily diet. These foods are best eaten raw, after washing. Cooking can reduce some of the “good stuff” that is contained within these powerhouse nutrients. Using a variety of colors and textures can give you a variety of nutrition, and can make meals more appealing, mentally.
Healthy whole grains can add carbohydrates and fiber without having the negative effects of a “white flour” diet. Good healthy grain choices can be: quinoa, barley, oats, brown rice, and, while technically not a grain, flax. While fiber is essential in our diet, avoid excessive fiber which can cause constipation and gassiness.
If eating healthy is difficult for you, avoid trigger foods. Trigger foods are foods that, once you start eating them, you find it nearly impossible to stop. Think donuts, cookies, potato chips, etc.
And lastly, don’t forget to drink your water! Eight 8-ounce glasses of water per day is a good starting point. Another way to gauge sufficient water intake is to ingest about half your body weight in ounces of water. That means if you weigh 150 pounds, set your goal for water at 75 ounces per day.
No. 2 – Exercise
Exercise doesn’t have to mean going to the gym every morning. It can be as simple as taking a walk around the block. If you feel unmotivated, try a destination walk. Walk to the store for a few items instead of driving. Or even set a simple goal of “I’m going to walk to the water tower and back”. These can help you achieve your step count without cutting it short.
If it’s cold, you can use a home treadmill. They don’t have to be expensive, either. Goodwill often has treadmills for a fraction of the cost of a new one. You can walk on a treadmill during your favorite TV program. This will help you gauge your time.
Likewise, just staying active and avoiding the couch, chair, or bed monster can keep your body in better shape. Making that 14thtrip to from the laundry to a bedroom with a load keeps your body moving.
No. 3 – Regular checkups
Most of us will see our doctorwhen we’re sick, but not as many will go to the doctor when we are feeling fine. However, annual checkups can help us identify problems before we have symptoms. High blood pressure often has no symptoms at all. Early Type II Diabetes can also be hard to detect in the early stages. Your physician can also run diagnostic tests which can help discover conditions, both minor and life-threatening, at their earliest manifestations.
Annual and regular well-visits do two other things, too. For starters, your doctor gets to see you when you are feeling well. It’s difficult to judge the severity of illness when the doctor only sees you when you are sick. Secondly, well visits provide a baseline for your health. How can a physician know if your health has changed when you only visit sporadically? Changes in your health can be very gradual and occur over time.
No. 4 – Avoidance
Avoid behaviors that can be detrimental to your body, such as smoking (even vaping!), heavy drinking, smokeless tobacco, and heavily processed foods. Always remember to protect your body with protective gear such as helmets, pads, and guards when engaging in physical activities such as biking, climbing, skating, horseback riding, and ATV/ motorcycle riding.
Keeping ourselves healthy isn’t just good for us, it’s good for our loved-ones around us. We want to be good role models for them so they can live happy, healthy, and long lives. Set a goal today, and keep a log. In a few short months, you should see an improvement in how you feel. It’s never too late to become a healthier YOU!
Don’t let the lack of insurance be an obstacle in becoming a healthier you. The HOPE Healthcare Services Community Care Program is for people and families without insurance. Services are provided at an affordable cost and we assist our patients in obtaining labs and prescriptions at the lowest costs available.