We all know the importance of leading a healthy lifestyle, but too often we don’t make it a priority. Finding the time to go to the doctor for annual visits and routine checkups, as well as trying to fit in some type of exercise is difficult but necessary. Don’t you wish there were more than 24 hours in a day? Leading an unhealthy lifestyle can put you at risk for serious diseases like cancer, heart disease, strokes and diabetes. Be proactive with your health, below are a few tips to help live the best life you can.
Make routine health check-ups, screenings, and dental exams
- Make annual and routine visits with your healthcare providers, it can save your life.
Eat a healthy, well-balanced diet
- Consume lean proteins. Try a serving of collagen hydrolysate along with other complete protein sources throughout the day.
- Consume complex carbohydrates (whole grain, high fiber carbohydrates).
- Consume 5-7 servings of fruits and vegetables. Men are more likely than women not to eat enough fruit and vegetables.
- Watch the salt. Men are more likely to over-indulge with too much salt, red meat and processed meat. Processed and packaged foods can be full of unhealthy fats, sugar, salt and do not contain enough fiber.
Get moving and exercise
- Both aerobic exercise and strength training are very important.
- Aerobic exercise helps to strengthen your heart. Types of aerobic exercise include running, walking, biking, basketball, soccer, tennis and other types of sports.
- Strength training builds, strengthens, and tones muscle as well as helps to protect your bones. Another awesome benefit of strength training is that it boosts your metabolism; not only do you burn calories while you are strength training, but you continue to burn calories after you are done. Types of strength training exercises include weightlifting, yoga and use of resistance bands.
- The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services recommends for substantial health benefits, adults should do at least 150 to 300 minutes (2.5-5 hours) a week of moderate-intensity, or 75 minutes to 150 minutes (1.25 to 2.5 hours) a week of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity. Preferably, aerobic activity should be spread throughout the week. Participation in activity amongst men declines with age.
Lose the gut for good
- According to NIH (National Institute of Health), for men, a waist measurement of 40 or more inches increases your risk of obesity-related diseases like Type 2 diabetes, a stroke or heart disease.
Break unhealthy habits
- Drink alcohol in moderation. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) state that the consumption of alcohol is associated with short- and long-term health risks such as various cancers, high blood pressure, liver disease.
- The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend consumption of up to 2 drinks per day for men (24 ounces of beer or 10 ounces of wine or 3 ounces of spirits).
- Do not use tobacco. According to the CDC, smoking and exposure to secondhand smoke can increase your risk for health issues such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), various cancer types, emphysema, and heart disease.
Learn to manage stress
- Continuous stress for an extended time period is not good for your health. Stress leads to the release of stress hormones which is what makes your heart race and breathing increase. When this continually happens, your health is at risk. Some side-effects and symptoms of increased stress response are tension headaches, increased depression, weakened immune system, high blood pressure, increased risk for a heart attack and gastrointestinal issues.
Making time and taking care of yourself is important for your overall health. Choosing healthy choices throughout the day will have an impact on and help to improve your long-term health and wellness. Every day try to do something you enjoy like bike riding, spending time with family and friends, playing sports, reading, and/or playing music. Try to incorporate a healthy well-balanced diet to provide you with optimal nutrition to keep you energized and keep your immunity strong, additionally, this can help to keep your weight in check. Get moving, exercising helps to manage stress as well as strengthen your heart and enhance your overall health. Take care of yourself and encourage those in your life that you care about to do the same.
Resources: Men’s Health Forum, HHS.gov, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website, National Institute of Health website.
Disclaimer: The information provided is for informational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose or treat any medical conditions. Nor is it intended to replace the advice or diagnosis of a medical professional. Individual results may vary.