More or Less: 8 Tips for a Healthy Lifestyle

You can’t control all of the factors that affect your health, and many illnesses, diseases, and chronic health conditions can’t be prevented. For example, being born a woman significantly increases your risk for breast cancer (more than 99% of breast cancer cases affect women). Your gender is not a factor you can control. 

This means that it’s especially important to focus on the factors that you can control.

Making healthy lifestyle choices helps you maintain a healthy weight, decreases your risk for heart disease, obesity, type 2 diabetes, and certain types of cancer, and helps improve your overall quality of life. Healthy living can also extend your life and reduce the amount of money that you have to spend on medical bills.

The sooner you make healthy changes, the sooner you start receiving health benefits, and the easier it is to establish lasting, healthy habits. Here are eight healthy lifestyle tips to help you get started.

Some health factors are beyond your control, so make the most of the factors that you can control. Here are some healthy lifestyle tips to promote good health and wellness! Click To Tweet

Move more

Physical activity is essential to good health. It strengthens muscles and bones, lowers your risk for certain chronic health issues, and helps you manage a healthy weight. According to the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, adults need at least this much movement each week:

  • 150 minutes to 300 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity,
  • 75 minutes to 150 minutes of vigorous-intensity physical activity, or
  • an equivalent combination of moderate and vigorous physical activity.

View these numbers as the minimum, rather than a maximum goal. The more you move, the greater the health benefits.

Sit less

Even if you meet the minimum recommendation for physical activity each day (about 30 minutes), you may still live a sedentary lifestyle the remaining 23 and a half hours of the day. Incorporate movement and physical activity throughout your day as part of a healthy lifestyle.

Eat more produce

Half of your plate should be filled with fruits and vegetables at each meal. Make sure you eat a variety of produce to get the different nutrients you need.

Eat less processed foods

Generally speaking, a shorter shelf life for food means a longer lifespan for you. Almost all of the food that you buy at the grocery store is processed to some extent. Processed foods aren’t always unhealthy, but highly processed foods usually are.

Eat fewer highly processed or ultra processed foods, and look for fresh foods made with real ingredients. This can help reduce the amount of added sugars, trans and saturated fats, and chemicals — used for things like texture, color, flavor, and as preservatives — you consume.

Drink more water

Most people get enough water each day from the foods they consume. While there’s no recommendation for how much plain water a person should drink each day, water is essential for good health. Getting enough water each day helps prevent dehydration, and it helps ensure that our body has enough water for proper function. Drinking plain water instead of sugary beverages can also help manage a healthy weight.

Get more sleep

Many Americans don’t get adequate sleep each night, and sleep is often one of the first things that we are willing to compromise when we need more time in the day. For many, it’s sleep time that suffers when you need to put in extra work to meet a deadline, or you want to fit exercise into your daily routine.

Adults need between seven and nine hours of sleep each night, but you can’t just hop in bed at midnight and wake up at 7 a.m. The quality of sleep is important, too. Make sure you follow good sleep habits.

Stress less

Stress is another health area that sometimes gets neglected. Unhealthy levels of chronic stress affect your mental health and your physical health. It’s important to set aside time to relax, do things that bring you joy, and find healthy ways to manage your stress.

Visit your doctor more

Don’t wait until you have a health problem. You should see your primary care provider at least once a year for a wellness exam. Share your health goals and mention any questions or concerns you have about your health.

Regular visits with your doctor improve the quality of care you receive. It also helps give your doctor a better picture of your overall health, it improves the level of communication, and it allows your doctor to guide your health decisions to help you reach your health goals.

Request an appointment with a MANA physician today.