- Stop Smoking.
All the experts agree on this one. Ever since 1960 when it was announced that smoking was harmful to your health, people have been reducing their use of tobacco products. Just recently, we’ve seen a surge in smoking in adolescents and teens. Warn your children of the false romance or tough guy image of smokers. Find ways to quit smoking such as hypnosis and support groups.
- Eat foods rich in beta-carotenes.
They can cut your risk of a stroke by 40 percent. Foods rich in beta-carotenes include carrots, cabbage, winter squash, sweet potatoes, dark leafy greens, apricots, and seaweed.
Make it your daily challenge to find ways to move your body. Climb stairs if given a choice between that and escalators or elevators. Walk your dog; go for walk with your kids; toss balls with friends, mow the lawn. Anything that moves your limbs is not only a fitness tool, it’s a stress buster. Think move in small increments of time. It doesn’t have to be an hour in the gym or a 45-minute dance class, yoga or kickboxing. But that’s great when you’re up to it. Move more and feel better!
- Avoid restrictive diets.
Frequent dieting, fasting, binging and purging imbalance your electrolyte levels, causing weakening of the heart muscle and damage to the heart.
- Reduce your exposure to pollution.
If you can’t live in a smog-free environment, at least avoid smoke-filled rooms, high traffic areas, breathing in highway fumes and exercising near busy thoroughfares. Exercise outside when the smog rating is low. Exercise indoors in air conditioning when air quality is good. Plant lots of shrubbery in your yard. It’s a good pollution deterrent.
- Don’t drink too much alcohol.
Whilst it is true that a glass of wine or one drink a day (two for men) can help protect against heart disease, more alcohol than that, or binge drinking on a night out, can cause other serious health problems such as liver and kidney disease and cancer.
- Reduce stress.
Stress busters come in many forms. Some techniques recommended by experts are to think positive thoughts. Spend 30 minutes a day doing something you like. (i.e., go back to number one above!, exercise is a great stress reducer, Soak in a hot tub; walk on the beach or in a park; read a good book; visit a friend; play with your dog; listen to soothing music; watch a funny movie. Get a massage, a facial or a haircut. Meditate. Count to ten before losing your temper or getting aggravated. Avoid difficult people when possible.
- Cut down on fat
Avoid the obvious such as fried foods, burgers and other fatty meats (i.e. pork, bacon, ham, salami, ribs and sausage). Dairy products such as cheese, cottage cheese, milk and cream should be eaten in low fat versions. Nuts and sandwich meats, mayonnaise, margarine, butter and sauces should be eaten in limited amounts. Most are available in lower fat versions such as substitute butter, fat free cheeses and mayonnaise.
- Keep a positive mental outlook.
There’s a definitive connection between living well and healthily and having a cheerful outlook on life. Yes, keep on smiling and laughing!
- Avoid processed foods.
The food industry aims at making products look and taste appealing without thought to the products’ nutritional value. Loaded with chemical additives and designed to be addictive, processed food is manufactured first for profit. Stay clear of them!!!