4 Tips to Take Charge of your Health

ENJOYING life to the fullest and ageing gracefully without the burden of disease depends largely on the healthy choices we make for our bodies today! It is generally accepted that improper diet and lifestyle are responsible for most of the diseases in our modern society. It is therefore necessary to have a list of rules on how to adapt one's daily routine according to the needs of the individual, changes in season or changes in environment. This is especially important given the present trend in work culture.

At risk is a healthy lifestyle and here are tips that will help you introduce small changes in lifestyle and diet to stay in balance with nature and thus prolong your "good" years:

It was suggested that eating breakfast early in the day may reduce the risk of weight gain and possibly heart disease and diabetes.

* Avoid fats and carbohydrates from items like sugar, potatoes, and white bread. Choose foods that are heart-healthy and include fruits, whole-grain cereals, wholemeal bread, reduced-fat cheese, and low-fat or skim milk.

* Beat the sugar high. For those that have a sweet tooth, staying away from sugar is a constant struggle. On one hand it is so much easier and faster to grab that doughnut on the way to the office! On the other hand, sugar becomes like an addiction that is very hard to break.

Macro photograph of a pile of sugar (saccharose)Image via Wikipedia
If you happen to like sugar a little more than you should and you need that sugar fix each day, a great way to get control and to curb the sugar craving is by using a natural substance called 5-HTP. You can find it in most natural health food store. (5-hydroxytryptophan)

There is no magic pill for weight loss, but if appetite, and not willpower, is your downfall, then 5-HTP may do the trick.

5-HTP is a direct precursor to "serotonin". It causes feelings of fullness and eliminates craving for carbohydrates and balances the serotonin levels in your brain. This safe, effective herbal compound can also lift your spirits which makes it great for mood swings, anxiety and depression. The recommended dosage is 50 to 100 milligrams per day.

* Rotate your exercise routine.

Varying your exercise routine can help slow down the ageing process. By switching routines you avoid boredom, and most importantly, the risk of injury caused by overusing a particular muscle, bone, or joint.

Try rotating between aerobic exercises such as walking, dancing, running, swimming, cycling and skating.

Add strength training exercises several times a week and gently stretch your muscles at least two or three times a week to help prevent weakness, stiffness, bone loss, and falls.

* Taking charge of your own medical history and lifestyle is your right! You don't have to become Dr Know-it-all, but researching specific areas of health that pertains to your own conditions is a smart move.

Researching the natural remedies in addition to what your doctor recommends gives you more choices, as well as natural healing options. Getting a second opinion from additional healthcare professionals is important as well.

You have the right to all your medical records and eyeglass or contact lens prescriptions. You are entitled to all copies of lab results, immunisation records, and imaging studies. Keep them filed at home in an organised manner. Keep a list of up-to-date medications and doses for your files and carry this list with you at all times.

By feeding your body and mind the best foods and nutrients possible, not only will you have more energy, your body will be stronger and your mind sharper.

In this regard you should not close your eyes to the efficacy of complementary health offered through traditional healing therapies, natural herbs and organic materials.

These tips given above are the first steps on the path toward a healthier life!

NST/Genevieve Wordsworth

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