Why wait for symptoms to start and then treat them when you can prevent them altogether? Proactive health involves taking care of your body before things go wrong. Caring for your health ahead of time can help you boost your immunity and prevent diseases. Being proactive in prioritizing your health can improve your mind and body, maintain your wellbeing, and give you a longer life.
Here are 6 ways to be more proactive about your health.
Eat Nutritious Food
A healthy diet can help you maintain your body weight and prevent diseases like heart problems and diabetes. Nutrients like vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants help boost your immunity and protect your body from infections.
Here are some proactive health tips for a balanced diet:
- Include whole grains, fiber-rich fruits and vegetables, and low-fat dairy in your diet.
- Substitute red meat with lean protein like chicken, fish, and beans.
- Use oils rich in healthy fats like olive oil or canola oil.
- Avoid fast food and snacks that are rich in bad fats and sugar.
- Take dietary supplements like vitamins and minerals.
- Eat less-processed or whole foods.
- Snack on antioxidant-rich superfoods like nuts and berries.
Regular exercise or any physical activity can improve your health, boost your immune system, and give you a longer life. This also improves your mind and body along with your strength, balance, energy, and flexibility.
Finding time for exercise may be hard, but there are many ways to include some activity into your daily routine. Here are some proactive health tips to incorporate regular exercise in your routine:
- Spend about 30 minutes per day or at least 150 minutes a week on exercise to help you stay fit.
- Find things you love doing. It can be jogging, walking, gardening, cycling, swimming, dancing, going to the gym, or even taking your dog for a walk.
- Consult your doctor or gym trainer for specific exercises that are suitable for your body.
- Whether it’s a morning jog or a walk after dinner, set some time aside and make exercise a habit.
- Find an exercise buddy. Exercising with someone can help you stay motivated.
Seek Preventive Care
Consult your doctor and proactively seek preventive care. This can include regular check-ups, immunizations or vaccines, screening tests, and weight control.
Screening tests and regular check-ups can protect you against diseases like cancer. Tests like mammograms, colonoscopies, or Pap smears help doctors detect cancer in the early stages and treat it before it gets worse. Research shows that colorectal cancer screening tests like colonoscopies can save more than 30,000 lives per year.
Also, find out if conditions like high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart problems, cancer, or other genetic disorders run in your family. Share your family history with your doctor. This can help you prevent or control the condition before you develop any symptoms.
Smoking can increase your chances of developing serious health conditions like heart disease and lung disease. If you’re a smoker, it may be hard to stop smoking completely, but it isn’t impossible. Keep trying until you quit for good.
Seek advice from your doctor or healthcare provider to help you quit. You can also join a "quit-smoking" program to encourage you.
Cut Back on Alcohol
An occasional drink won’t do any harm, but in the long run, heavy drinking can give you high blood pressure, liver problems, heart problems, cancer, and stroke. Drinking alcohol in moderation can help you prevent these health conditions.
Proactively cut back on alcohol. Avoid going to parties that have only alcohol. At meals or parties, have nonalcoholic drinks instead of alcohol. If you choose to have alcohol, have limited amounts along with food.
If you think you have an alcohol problem, consult your doctor or a healthcare professional.
Get Enough Sleep
Lack of sleep increases your chances of developing conditions like diabetes, obesity, and heart problems. It also increases the risk of mental disorders like anxiety and depression.
Sleeping is vital for your body and mind to function. It reduces stress and helps you recharge and restore your energy.
Get at least 7 hours of sleep each day to make sure you stay healthy and happy.
Proactive health is the most important part of self-care. So, choose what’s best for you and remember that prevention is always better than the cure.
For specific information on preventive care, consult your doctor or healthcare professional.