Despite the massive advances in modern medicine that enable people to live longer, we are still in a generation plagued by health problems. This may be due to the wide variety of unhealthy foods in our shops, our drinking culture or our laziness caused by technological progress. Whatever it is, the problem is not irreversible. While there are many ways to live unhealthy, there are many simple steps you can follow to live healthier lives and reduce the risk of serious illness in the future.
Even as a child we were always told to eat 5 portions of fruit and vegetables a day, which can seem like a difficult goal to achieve. Try to add healthy extras to your meals, such as a fruit smoothie or vegetable soup. Try to include at least one portion of fruit and vegetables in each meal and also use fruit and vegetables when snacking.
This not only ensures that your body receives all the vitamins and nutrients it needs, but also that you reduce your sugar consumption and replace it with good nutrients. High sugar consumption can lead to weight gain, which increases your risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
If you don't like sports enough to join a gym or exercise, there are many little tricks you can do to become more active without even realizing it. Take the stairs instead of the elevator, park your car a little further away, and try to get some exercise from time to time during the day, especially if you sit a lot during the day. This could be a short walk during your lunch break, or just getting up every hour to get a glass of water.
Although some studies suggest that moderate alcohol and caffeine consumption can have a positive effect on your health, too much consumption can cause problems. While there is evidence that a small amount of both can be effective in protecting of your brain, reducing the risk of many diseases and potentially increasing your life span, excessive consumption can damage your liver, cause heart disease and increase the risk of certain types of cancer. It can also lead to problems such as insomnia, dehydration or unhealthy teeth.
Although it has nothing to do with the alcohol or caffeine itself, many alcoholic beverages and coffee have a high sugar content, which can lead to weight gain and other related problems (e.g. diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure). Try to make smart choices and switch to low-sugar alternatives like gin & tonic or black coffee.
The risks and potential health problems associated with smoking are well documented and there is a seemingly endless list of them. Nevertheless, the addictive nicotine that cigarettes contain makes it very difficult to get rid of the unhealthy habit.
There are smoking cessation products that will greatly increase your chances of stopping smoking. You can try nicotine substitutes, but the best effect is undoubtedly Champix, which blocks the nicotine receptors in the brain, reducing the pleasure of smoking and thus stopping the cravings.
If you find it too difficult to quit completely, or you have already tried to quit and had a relapse, you may be interested to know that most of the harmful chemicals in cigarettes build up at the bottom of the cigarette. Smoking half a cigarette will reduce the amount of tar and other dangerous substances that enter your lungs.
It is not only important to be physically healthy - your mental health is just as important! Stress can not only rob you of sleep, but can also increase your risk of developing high blood pressure or having a heart attack or stroke.
Try to reduce stress by planning your work schedule properly, staying organized and performing meditation or other relaxing exercises. It is important that you find a balance between work, family, friends and yourself. Don't forget to plan a little time for yourself.