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A Healthy Lifestyle for 2005 and Beyond

 

October 17, 2005  |  

The rules are simple. Eat healthy and exercise. Americans new diet guidelines encourage eating healthy fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and fat-free or low fat dairy products; limiting saturated fats, sugar, alcohol, and salt; and getting plenty of exercise.

“Lifestyle factors now loom as the leading cause of premature death,” said Joseph Scherger, M.D., UCSD Family Medicine. Promoting a healthy lifestyle of being active and eating right must now become a principal focus.” Here are four simple rules to follow

Rule #1 Be Active

The evidence supporting the health benefits of physical activity are compelling. Recent research shows that all physical activity counts, and its benefits are cumulative. Make time for exercise at least five times a week. Rule #1 is as simple as a walk around the block.

Rule #2 Eat Right

Eating right means not consuming more energy (food) than you can burn (exercise). Start a food diary and be flexible. Rule #2 is as simple as trading a doughnut for a piece of fruit.

Rule #3 Sleep Well

A good night’s sleep is good for the body. Poor sleep habits can lead to health problems. Rule #3 is as simple as a good night’s sleep.

Rule #4 Be Happy

Have a positive outlook does have health benefits. Depression is now regarded as a leading cause of disability worldwide. Mental health is critically important to overall health. Rule #3 is as simple as in any way we can, we should have a positive outlook.

Rule #5 Relax

The body and mind need to relax, and probably more often than just during sleeping. As with exercise, we need to make time for this fundamentally healthy activity. Rule #4 is as simple as taking a time out to sit and watch a sunset.

“You are more likely to accomplish and keep up good health habits when you simply follow the rules,” said Dr. Scherger.

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