Keys to Achieving Better Health
Adopting a healthy lifestyle is one of the best ways you can take charge of your health. We believe the cornerstones of a healthy lifestyle is based on maintaining a balanced diet, exercising regularly, and taking preventative measures. By incorporating all three of these "keys to success", you can achieve optimal health.
A Healthier Diet, a Healthier You
Having a balanced diet with nutritional value is the foundation for staying healthy and keeping your body strong. Additionally, it can help prevent a variety of health problems, like heart disease, obesity, and high cholesterol.
3 components of a balanced diet include:
- Variety: enjoying many different foods from each of the five main food groups (grains, vegetables, fruits, dairy, and protein).
- Balance: including enough, but not too much, of any one kind of food or food group.
- Moderation: limiting the use of fats, oils, and portion sizes.
Tips to make healthy eating easy
- Start by making better food choices at meals. Do you forgo breakfast at home and automatically go to your favorite drive-thru or opt for a donut in the break room at work? Your first change might be to have a healthy whole-grain cereal or a plain yogurt with fruit for your morning meal. Pack it in your tote if you aren't hungry before you leave the house.
- Next, upgrade your supermarket choices. Is your cart typically loaded with convenience foods? The next time you shop, buy the fresh foods needed to replace at least one meal a day with a from-scratch recipe. When you need convenience items, think of precut fixings for a vegetable salad and a roasted chicken or cooked shrimp for nutritious proteins.
- Finally, revamp your cooking style. If your favorite recipes are breaded and fried, or loaded with butter and cheese, cut back on some of these high-calorie techniques. It can be as simple as switching from cream-based sauces to a tomato puree and from frying to broiling.
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Boosting your health with physical fitness
Exercising on a regular basis provides an abundance of both short-term and long-term health benefits. When it comes to unlocking these benefits it's quite simple: move more and sit less!
Immediate benefits of increased activity:
- Decreased feelings of anxiety
- Lower blood pressure
- Better sleep
- Improved insulin sensitivity
Benefits of consistent exercise
- Better heart and lung health
- Greater muscle strength
- Fewer symptoms of depression
- Long-lasting lowering of blood pressure
Simple activities to increase activity
- Pleasure walking
- Climbing stairs
- Moderate-to-heavy housework/yardwork
The power of preventative measures
In addition to healthy eating and regular exercise, becoming aware of medical conditions you may have and/or be at risk of having is critical for maintaining optimal health.
Be aware and involved in your care
- Schedule and keep your medical appointments/ check-ups
- Plan ahead to get the most out of those visits
- Participate in your healthcare and partner with your COPC doctor
Be proactive and take action!
Talk with your COPC provider about:
- Conditions you have/are at risk for and how you can manage them
- Screenings for cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and other problems
- Immunizations for illnesses
- Counseling for mental health concerns
- Your diet and activity levels
- Your weight
- Stress management
- Smoking or substance use/abuse
- Steps you can take to prevent chronic disease
Change is rarely easy or quick, so remember to ease into these new lifestyle habits. Small changes will add up to big health results over time.