Your health is the most important gift and investment you have.
Take care not to squander it while you're young, just to seek it while you're old.
Prevention is the best medicine. In our office, we love to tell people, "It's easier to stay well than to get well."
8 Easy Ways to Improve Your Health Today
No matter what healthcare mandates come from the government or from insurance companies, the single best way to improve the nation’s health is simple: Stay healthy.
If you ask someone, “What’s the one thing that you plan to do in the New Year to improve your health?” how many are going to say, “Take more medications”?
Preventable illnesses like heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and several leading forms of cancer rob millions of Americans of years of quality life.
A 2009 study of 23,153 adults who followed four tenets of good health (they didn’t smoke, didn’t gain weight, they exercised, and ate a healthy diet) were 80% less likely to develop chronic illnesses. Their risk of developing type 2 diabetes was 92% lower, and their odds of having a heart attack were 81% lower.
“Results like these prove again and again that the most powerful tool we have to improve health is prevention,” says Wes Alles, PhD, director of the Stanford Health Improvement program at Stanford University.
But you don’t need a mandate from the government or your insurance company. You can create your own health care reform program right in your own home. Here’s what you can do:
1. Take a Walk Every Day
Exercise offers so many health benefits. Something as simple as a brisk walk for half an hour a day can dramatically improve your health, sleep, and energy levels.
2. Don’t Smoke Anything (Well, maybe a Boston Butt)
3. Clean Up Your … Water
Everyone tells you to drink plenty of water. Make sure that water is not tainted with lead, pharmaceuticals, or other pollutants. Invest in a water purifier to protect yourself and your loved ones. Also, water is great but only if you're drinking minerals as well. This is what keeps you hydrated. Try adding a pinch of good grade salt such as this one here.
4. Take a Deep Breath
To reduce stress and add more oxygen to your brain and all body systems, inhale deeply so that your belly expands but your chest stays still. Slowly exhale through your mouth until your stomach empties, and repeat.
5. Don’t wait up for Santa
Sleep is essential for good health. Your brain goes through a detoxification process during sleep. It is important to get a good 7.5– 9 hours per night (Teens need 9-10.5... isn’t that interesting?). A full sleep cycle is 1.5 hours so try to set your alarm to wake up in increments of 1.5 so you are not waking during the middle of a sleep cycle.
6. Chew and Swallow
Slow down at mealtimes. Have no more than 5 forkfuls per minute. Chew your food very thoroughly… digestion starts in the mouth. About 15 to 20 chews is optimal!
7. Stand up
It’s important to break up long periods of sitting with some standing. Experts recommend standing up after you've been sitting for 20 minutes. Even standing for a just minute at a time can help.
8. Sit down
… the right way! Check the setup of your home and/or office computer station. Make sure that your setup is ergonomically correct. This can relieve a lot of chronic low back pain, neck pain, shoulder, arm and hand pain.
These eight easy changes can make a big difference in your life.