It’s true that we are living longer, sadly, it also translate to more years of living in ill health. The life expectancy of men in the United States had increased from 72 years in 1990 to 76 years in 2012, however, the number of years in ill health was 8 years. The same trend is noted for women, whose life expectancy increased from 79 years in 1990 to 81 years in 2012, with 10 of these years spent in ill health. How do we live longer and healthier? Here are top 10 tips for healthy living!
Healthy Tip #1 – Don’t Smoke
Smoking is related to many diseases, thus not smoking already reduced your risk of ill health. Studies had been conducted showing that the earlier one quit, the more ‘lost life’ years can be regained. Quitting smoking reduces risk of heart attack, stroke, cancers of the mouth, throat, esophagus, bladder and lungs.
Healthy Tip #2 – Eat Healthy Plate
A healthy diet is more effective than exercise in weight loss and it is common sense that the foods we put into our body matters. The current recommendation is half a plate of fruits and vegetables, a quarter of grains and a quarter of protein. Think of a healthy plate as a colorful plate as well, as the more colors likely mean variety of vitamins and antioxidants.
Healthy Tip #3 – Cut the Sugar
Sugar is addictive – it has been shown that it creates a ‘high’ in brain and like drugs, more and more amount is needed to achieve the same ‘high’ overtime. Cutting sugar is essentially taking two critical healthy steps – 1. Cutting empty calories and 2. Cutting inflammatory food intake.
Healthy Tip #4 – Get the Serving Size Right
There are many books out there that recommend counting calories and also an increasing amount of books that have ‘catchy’ titles that calories do not matter. Make no mistake though – when they say calories don’t matter, they don’t mean you eat as much as you like. Usually, it means that the quality of the foods should be emphasized over the quantity.
Healthy Tip #5 – Cut the Bad Fats, Up the Good Fats
Healthy fats like omega 3 helps repair our skin and cell membranes and promote absorption of vitamins. Trans fat and saturated fats, on the other hand, increases the bad cholesterol that has also been associated with promoting inflammation in our body.
Healthy Tip #6 – Dump the Junk
Junk is manufactured to cause you to want them. Scientists are hired to ensure that the right combination of sugar, sodium and fat stimulate your brain to want more of it. Need more be said?
Healthy Tip #7 – Read Labels
Reading label goes a long way, even for your wallet. Reject foods that are more than 10% in saturated fats and more than 10% in sugar and you’d find that you can’t buy quite a lot of processed foods! Reject foods that have trans fat, partially hydrogenated fats, aspartame, monosodium glutamate and anything ‘artificial’.
Healthy Tip #8 – Exercise
Exercise is more than just weight loss; it is increasingly studied that exercise promotes the release of the body’s own internal medicine that promotes health. It could be why being physically active reduces your chance of disease by half.
Healthy Tip #9 – Do above 3
This is a reminder that healthy diet, coupled with adequate physical activity and not smoking reduced the risk of premature death from any disease by 80%. It is the best insurance you can have for your body!
Healthy Tip #10 – Get over your genes
This is sometimes an excuse we think of – Good genes, we can afford to be unhealthy or Bad genes, we needn’t bother to be healthy. The study of epigenetics is gathering evidence that our genes can be switched on and off. Thus, healthy living can switch off those bad genes and switch on the good ones.