Focusing on Healthy Living
- September 14, 2009
Healthy is a generic term that generally makes you think of exercise and dieting. This is most often true due to fact that we need to compensate or make up for the years that we have not been eating correctly and lack of physical activity. These bad habits weigh us down, both figuratively and literally. However, there are other areas to consider when improving ones health.
Why focus on your overall health? Besides quality and longevity of life there are many self inflicted conditions that can be avoided. Some of these types of conditions are: diabetes, cancer, congestive heart failure, gastro esophageal reflux disease, liver disease, hernia, urinary incontinence, chronic kidney failure, stroke, depression, osteoarthritis, gallbladder disease, sleep apnea, alcoholism, brain damage, chronic obstructive lung disease, malnutrition, miscarriage, heart attack, recurrent infections, shortness of breath, asthma and cardiovascular disease. Many of these can be avoided by giving up bad habits such as smoking and excessive drinking as well as limiting consumption of foods high in cholesterol and fat.
Your health is greatly impacted by the foods you choose to eat on a daily basis. If you are not eating enough fruits and vegetables you will be depriving your body of necessary vitamins and minerals that are needed to function properly. If you tend to eat foods high in fat, cholesterol and calories you will most likely feel sluggish and gain weight since these are hard to work off during the activities of a normal day. Many people will go on a diet when focusing on being healthy. This works for some people because it specific identifies what they should or should not be eating.
One of the best ways to improve your health is to focus on exercising. Unfortunately we do not have much physical activity during our days, which means that we need to plan time or ways to ensure we are using our bodies more. The best plan for physical fitness is doing cardiovascular exercise 20-30 minutes 2-3 days per week and lifting weights 2-3 days per week. If you currently do not do this start out slowly with 1-2 days per week for both. Exercise not only helps your health from a physical standpoint but it also helps how you feel due to the chemicals that are released during the time you are exercising called endorphins which make you feel happy. Besides this planned exercise activities you should be creative in looking for ways to add additional physical activities into your day such as taking the stairs instead of the elevator.
To round off your overall health it is important to focus on your mental well being. This is one area of health that many people overlook. If you have made improvements to your health by eating better and working out but still have not achieved the feeling of being healthy it might be that you are not focusing on your mental health. Here are a few ideas of what to focus on to improve your mental health:
-Get a good nights rest
-Try new things
-Spend time with friends and family
-Plan time to do something for you
-Listen to music
-Count your blessings
-Talk to people
To get started on making improvements to your health take a look what your goals are. What areas in your health do you need to improve or improve the most? What is your current lifestyle and what can you change? Often times we must make some type of compromise to reach the goals we have made for ourselves it is usually in the terms of time or money. Becoming healthy is a life long journey. You should focus each day on becoming healthier than the day before. Set goals along the way to track your progress. If you have setbacks recognize them for what they are and move on.