How to Get Healthier

People want to get healthy and no wonder, health improves every aspect of life including longevity.
Who doesn't want to live a long, physically and mentally happy life?

Who doesn’t want to live a long, physically and mentally happy life?

One problem is knowing what to do to get healthy and how to recognize the sleazy predators that don’t care about your health – just your money – from the good, reliable sources of information.

Another problem is that even the best sources of reliable information don’t have all the answers and may never have all the answers. Part of staying healthy is out of our hands. It’s a combination of genetics, avoiding pathogens that may yet to be understood or identified, and good luck.?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

Knowing we don’t have 100% control over our health makes it more important that we take control of what we can control. Research conducted by major health organizations and published in peer-reviewed scientific and medical journals tells us the most important things we can do for our health are as follows:

In the order of importance and influence on our health they are:

1. Reduce Stress ?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

Human beings have stress hormones that served us well in prehistoric times. They kicked in when our existence was threatened. Adrenaline made us stronger and faster to escape the threat. All that strength and speed used extra calories, so then cortisol kicked in to increase our hunger to replenish the calories to help us recover from the threat. Cortisol is good…..

Some of us are in a constant state of mental stress. Family life, job security, too much bad news via TV and Internet have some people almost constantly pumping cortisol. Too much cortisol is bad…..

Reducing stress isn’t easy, but it’s the most important thing you can do for your health.
Some things that help may be:
  • Getting 7-8 hours of quality, restful sleep every night (or day depending on your work schedule)
  • Finding restful activities to help de-stress such as meditation or perhaps a physical activity
  • Removing or reducing whatever stressors in your life you can. Turn off the TV, stay off the Internet, learn to let go of problems that aren’t yours or problems you can’t solve (“not my circus – not my monkeys!“)
  • Make time to engage in pleasurable activities every day! It’s not selfish, it’s a necessary habit for staying well.
2. Get Regular Physical Activity (Make it fun!)???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

Staying active is good for you and just as a balanced diet offers benefits, so does getting a balance of physical activities.

If you like to dance, for example, that’s an aerobic activity. It burns calories and raises your heart rate while working large muscle groups in a rhythmically.

You will also need a way to include strength training. Many household chores can help build strength. Vacuuming, washing windows and cars, shoveling snow, carrying laundry up and down stairs, carrying children and even pushing strollers. Pushups and squats are also strength training exercises.

Stretching is also part of a balanced exercise program. It’s a mistake to stretch to warm up. Stretching tight muscles can cause injury. Stretching should be done at the end of a physical activity when muscles are warmed up and limber. Stretching helps to keep us flexible and limber. It makes it easier to stay active.

3. Eat Well (Eat what tastes good!)
A little of this (if you like it) and...

A little of this (if you like it) and…

..a lot of this!

..a lot of this!

Eating well is eating a variety of foods that provide the nutrients your body needs for good health. Eating in balance and moderation will do more for your health than avoiding the foods that are believed to be unhealthy. When you focus on what not to eat, you’re not paying attention to the quality of the foods you are eating.

This list is a good foundation for eating well. Eat plenty of the foods on the list and sprinkle in a few of your favorite treats and indulgences and you’re enjoying good eating while eating well!

Doing those 3 things are a good way to take good care of ourself and do what we can to live long and in good health!

 

Jackie Conn

About Jackie Conn

Jackie Conn is married and has four grown daughters and four grandchildren. She is a Weight Watchers success story. She's a weight loss expert with 25 years of experience guiding women and men to their weight-related goals. Her articles on weight management have been published in health, family and women's magazines. She has been a regular guest on Channel 5 WABI news, FOX network morning program Good Day Maine and 207 on WCSH.