Did you know that as many as 25% of people in the United States follow sedentary lifestyles? Being physically inactive may not seem like a big deal, but it is one of the worst things you can do for your body. This is because if you don’t do much more than sit around all day, you won’t have the chance to stimulate your body, strengthen your muscles, and so on.
If you want to know how to be fit and healthy, you’ll need to start moving. Besides that, you need to take your diet and overall lifestyle into question as well. But where should you start?
Keep reading and learn what you can do to get in shape.
Exercise More Often
A surprisingly large number of people don’t exercise regularly. This is the case for several reasons. For one, many people don’t like exercising.
Another reason is that they are too busy to exercise. Whatever the case, it is still important to exercise whether you like it or not. But why?
Exercising stimulates not only the muscles but the entire body. Consider a simple exercise like walking. This strengthens your leg muscles, but it also improves your blood flow.
As long as your blood is moving smoothly throughout your body, you can experience an array of health benefits. It is very good for your cardiovascular system and healthy blood flow is linked to decreased plaque formation in the blood vessels.
Another benefit of this is that your brain will receive more blood than if you were sedentary. The more oxygenated blood your brain receives, the more stimulated your brain will become. This is why many people find that they are more alert when they exercise.
But what about strengthening your muscles? Exercise not only makes your muscles get larger but also denser and more powerful. Different exercises can transform your muscles in different ways.
Some keep your muscles relatively lean but still very h2. Others focus on getting your muscles physically larger. There are also exercises that are good for your respiratory system.
When you rarely exercise, average activities may take your breath away. This is because people who are out of shape have little to no stamina or endurance. But when you start cardio exercises, you can build up the power of your respiratory system.
Cardio exercises involve stimulating your heart and breathing. These exercises involve running, swimming, biking, and so on. By doing things that force you to breathe deeply, you will gradually build up your endurance.
You can see the difference when you start exercising. It might seem like an impossible task at first, but when you keep at it, it will get much easier. After some time, you will find that the exercises that were difficult before are now a breeze.
If you want to prioritize staying healthy, you should exercise a few times every week. Once every day is ideal, but not everyone has time for that. At a minimum, you should exercise three to four times a week for at least 30 minutes.
If you do that, you should start to feel a significant difference in your body’s health.
Eat the Right Foods
Everyone knows that they should have a balanced diet, but few people ever bother to do it. This is because it is hard to eat healthily. What kind of foods should you eat?
Which should you avoid? What if you don’t like the taste of healthy food? Is it so bad if you stick to junk food?
There are many reasons why standard junk food is bad for you. These foods are loaded with salt and sugar. Both components can harm your entire body in the long run.
This is especially true for your cardiovascular system. Excess sodium is your heart’s worst enemy. Yet, many people eat far too much sodium daily.
Excess sugar is also not great for your body. This does not include the occasional sugary snack. If you are eating sugary things all the time, it may cause problems like type 2 diabetes.
This is when your pancreas stops producing insulin, which makes it difficult for your body to maintain healthy blood sugar levels. Another problem that arises from excess sugar is obesity. Almost 2 billion people worldwide are considered overweight.
Being overweight is especially bad for your cardiovascular system. Extra physical weight puts extra strain on your heart and can exhaust it early. Carrying extra weight is also terrible for your joints.
This is why many obese people have degenerative knee and hip problems. Obesity is also connected to other health issues such as strokes, heart attacks, and more. Needless to say, it is important to eat the right foods to prevent these problems.
What You Need to Know
But what food should you eat? Staying healthy requires you to follow a healthy and balanced diet. Instead of eating fast food, consider adding more fresh food to your diet.
Even if you don’t like fruits and vegetables, it is still important to add them to your diet. You don’t have to eat them every day, but you should still have them a few times a week. Broccoli, asparagus, eggplants, spinach, and lettuce are all great examples you can try.
Oranges, apples, bananas, avocados, and berries are also ideal due to their high levels of antioxidants. Antioxidants help reduce inflammation throughout the body. Some research shows that antioxidants can even slow the aging process and prevent certain types of cancer. Drinking plenty of water is also good for your body.
If you don’t care for the taste of water, you can always try tea instead.
Preventative medicine involves taking regular visits to your doctor to make sure that your health is in check. Many people don’t bother with preventative care. If you’re not showing any symptoms, why should you bother going to the doctor?
Even if you don’t feel that there is anything wrong with you, that doesn’t mean you should ignore your health. You might feel fine, but you might have a serious health condition. Young people are especially reluctant to take regular doctor visits.
This is because young people are usually healthy, so they figure that preventative medicine is a waste of time and money. But young people are still at risk of developing a variety of health problems. Older adults should prioritize preventative care even more.
This is because older adults are naturally more likely to have health problems. Some of these problems include arthritis, cancer, diabetes, and more. What exactly does preventative care involve?
It usually consists of a few basic tests and exams. You may need to get some blood drawn or get a physical exam. Sometimes, a scan may be necessary.
By going through these simple tests, you can learn more about the state of your health. These tests might confirm that you are, indeed, perfectly healthy. Or they could tell you that you are suffering from a condition that you didn’t know you had.
What to Know
For example, many people have high blood pressure without even knowing it. If left untreated, high blood pressure could lead to a heart attack or stroke. But by treating it ahead of time, you can reduce the risk of these problems.
Preventative care is more than just getting a bunch of tests. It also allows you to talk with your doctor about your health. If you are debating whether to get certain vaccines, you can ask your doctor about them.
If you are worried about taking a new kind of medication, you can also talk about that. Your doctor can also give you some advice on lifestyle medicine and how you can improve your overall health. Your doctor might advise you to try certain exercises, eat certain foods, and so on.
While this all might sound very simple, incorporating these little bits of advice into your life can make a big difference. Your doctor can also help you make more difficult decisions such as getting yourself to stop smoking or drinking alcohol. Your doctor is there to help, so you should take advantage of their advice.
Some doctors can even help you with stress management and other similar issues. Once you start to take these pieces of advice to heart, you will find that your lifestyle will change for the better. Once these practices become a normal part of your daily routine, you will feel much healthier overall.
You might even find that you could do things that you couldn’t do before like go on long walks or bike rides.
Many people don’t realize that stress can be a serious hazard to one’s health. You might know that stress is an unpleasant feeling, but did you know that it can physically damage your body’s cells? This is because stress is not only a mental reaction but a physical one.
Suppose that you get stressed out because you lost your job. This can come as a big shock to your system. Your body will react by making itself tenser.
Your blood vessels might even constrict and make it difficult for blood to flow properly throughout the body. You might experience trouble sleeping which, in turn, would cause even more problems. If your body can’t sleep, it won’t be able to repair itself from daily stresses during the night.
Stress can even affect your breathing and heart rate. When a person is under stress, their heart rate increases and their breathing becomes more rapid. In the case of a panic attack, these issues can get even more severe.
A panic attack causes symptoms such as hyperventilation, dizziness, nausea, cramping, and more. Some people may even pass out or feel like they are having a heart attack. Even if you don’t have panic attacks, general and consistent stress can still be a big problem.
You can reduce stress in many ways such as through breathing exercises. These exercises prioritize slow and controlled breaths. By breathing in this way, you can lower your heart rate and calm your mind.
Meditation is another useful trick. It involves emptying your mind of whatever might be causing you stress. That way, you can relax.
There are also self-care tactics you can try. Taking a warm bath with some essential oils may help you loosen up. Yoga incorporates meditation with exercise and is great at reducing stress.
Medical services and therapy can help too.
Whatever the case, it is important to be one step ahead of your stress. That way, you will feel much better overall. It is always important to take care of your mental health as much as your physical health.
How to Be Fit and Healthy
Learning how to be fit and healthy isn’t as hard as you might think. First, you should prioritize exercise and following a healthy diet. Involving yourself in preventative care and stress-reduction exercises are also very important.
With those strategies, you should be healthier in no time. To learn more about our preventative care services, click here to explore our holistic options.