It’s A New Year – Begin with Your Health!
Many of us begin the New Year making resolutions about how we want to improve something about our lives that we desire to change. However, a recent study in Psych Today reports that “about two-thirds of people abandon their New Years resolutions within a month.” Most resolutions involve diet and exercise. Health care experts are also reporting that the global pandemic has had catastrophic repercussions on our health; we’re sitting too much, and our mental health is in the tank.
The New Year can mean new beginnings. We are proposing to begin with health – but let’s forgo the resolution. Let’s talk about lifestyle changes and taking precautions every day to pay attention to what matters to you and your family.
Beginning with COVID – The United States Postal Service has announced they’re going to be sending free at home Covid-19/antigen tests! It’s a great thing to take advantage of so we can all be safe. One order per household and four tests will be sent to your home for free. Here’s the link to sign up- it’s super easy: https://special.usps.com/testkits
According to the Western Washington Medical Group the top health threat for Americans is Chronic Disease. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) It’s estimated that 6 out of 10 Americans suffer from a chronic disease, and 4 of those 10 suffer from two or more. These diseases include: Diabetes, Alzheimer’s, Stroke, Heart Disease, Cancer, Chronic Kidney Disease and Chronic Lung Disease. Why do so many Americans suffer from these? The CDC sites a combination of poor nutrition, excessive use of alcohol, insufficient exercise, tobacco use and lack of preventative care.
What can you do to ensure you and your family embrace a healthy lifestyle? Here are 5 ways to get you started:
- Know your Numbers! Blood pressure numbers that is. People who have high blood pressure have more than half the lifetime risk of having stroke. An optimal blood pressure reading is 120/80.
- STOP SMOKING. Tobacco use doubles the risk for stroke and heart disease.
- Maintain Healthy Cholesterol Levels. Cholesterol or plaque build-up can block normal blood flow to the brain.
- Increase Physical Activity. A simple walk can improve our mental state and oxygen flow.
- Embrace a Healthy Diet. Eat more low-calorie, nutrient-rich foods, such as fruits and vegetables and smaller amounts of high-calorie, high-sodium foods such as refined, processed, or fast foods.
It’s the beginning of the year – let’s get started! Our bodies will thank us and so will our families!