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It’s needless to say that health doesn’t come on its own, but we need to invest in it. Many hazards connected to unhealthy lifestyles can easily affect our health without us even realizing it. Malignant tumors, cardiovascular diseases, burn-outs and diabetes are just some of the major health issues directly related to unhealthy lifestyle habits such as overeating, stress, low physical activity or simply negligence.
In order to prevent this, you need to make health the number one item on your everyday to-do list. Taking charge of your health means going towards a healthier lifestyle and a longer, more prosperous life. These five steps will help you get there.
Step 1: DO sleep more
Sleep has always been the major pillar of health, and even though an average person nowadays sleeps for less than 7 hours (as research from Fitbit shows), this doesn’t mean that our health has adapted to such a regime. On average, physically active adults need at least 7 hours of sleep per night to fully recover from exercise, workload and everyday stress. Sleeping less than recommended increases risks of cardiovascular diseases, obesity, cancer and depression. As the National Institutes of Health reports, sleep deprivation also leads to less productive work. It takes people who don’t sleep enough longer to finish tasks, they have a slower reaction time, and make more mistakes.
You can help yourself improve your sleeping quality by arranging your obligations and tasks around your sleeping time. Consult a sleep calculator every time you go to bed to see when you should wake up to be fully rested. Also, you should restart your biorhythm by waking up at the same time, and going to bed before midnight. Once you get the hang of it, sticking to a healthy sleeping schedule will become a habit such as any other.
Step 2: DON’T rely on junk food
If you’re having a busy day, it’s probably not convenient to cook food or go looking for a healthier snack when junk food is at every corner. Every bad food choice starts with the same scenario, and you should know how to recognize this pattern and stop repeating it. Most importantly, you ought to even stop considering junk food an option.
There are tons of reason why junk food is bad for you, but instead of focusing on the wrong outcomes, try focusing on what healthy food can bring you. A positive frame will help you see all the benefits of a dietary change more easily.
Step 3: DON’T skip regular checkups
Doctors who’ve lost their patients state mostly that this unfortunate outcome could’ve been prevented if they were to come in earlier. Due to everyday work and other activities, we tend to forget to do regular checkups and only go to the doctor’s if we feel really bad.
Prevention is the key to diagnosing diseases on time and treating them effectively. This is why going for regular full-body checkups is crucial to maintaining our health. The most neglected part of our body is probably our brain, which we very much take for granted. It’s important to consult a neurosurgeon you can trust to help you keep your mind sharp. If you are having any spine or neurological problems, experts state that Dr Timothy Steel and his team at St Vincent’s are among the top practitioners of neurosurgery and spinal surgery in the world.
Step 4: DO educate yourself
Keep your mind open every time you visit a doctor’s office, because only if you have an understanding of your body’s symptoms can you take charge of them. Educating yourself about your health is necessary so that you can spot any possible issue on time and prevent it from getting worse.
It would be even better to go to the doctor’s office already armed with knowledge. But, be careful when using internet sources, because this is a double-edged sword. Only official research papers and expert blogs are verified sources, while you should avoid forums, social media and other unverified websites.
Step 5: DON’T ignore health indicators
Finally, it’s far too important never to ignore any discomfort that you might be having, because even a minor issue can cumulatively lead to a major one. Headaches, chest aches and stomach aches are particular pains you should always consult a doctor for (especially if they last for more than a couple of days).
Don’t be afraid to go ask your doctor anything concerning health issues. Even if it turns out that the symptoms you’re having aren’t a big deal, you can only feel relieved. On the other hand, if you choose to ignore them, things might go from bad to worse. Take responsibility for your health and don’t let it happen.
Featured image: Unsplash