Most chronic diseases are preventable. We know more about prevention than ever before, but the advice can be overwhelming. Rather than succumbing to information overload, why not choose one or two changes and see how you feel? Small steps can get the ball rolling on a healthier path. Here are some easy ones:
- Avoid BPA’s. These compounds, found in plastics (particularly coded with 3 or 4) cause hormonal issues and cancers. Dr. Board says, “3 and 4: out the door!” If they aren’t in the house, they won’t be inadvertently heated, washed or utilized in any way by family members, including your four-legged ones.
- Choose organics. As you become healthier, it’s counter-intuitive to keep using food with pesticides, added hormones and antibiotics. Besides causing harm, these poisons can also muddle a diagnosis.
- Exercise. A little each day is so much better than none at all. Morning is best since we tend to talk ourselves out of it otherwise.
- Eat more veggies. The world’s populations boasting the greatest longevity and least disease eat mostly plants. You can still have your favorite foods, but aim for 2/3 of your plate to contain vegetables.
- Stop worrying. Life has ups and downs. Mistakes are just stepping-stones to the next right move. Worrying cannot prevent problems, but it can wreak havoc with your health.
- As you make changes, keep a Health Diary. Even if you feel fantastic after that morning walk, you will likely downgrade the memory if you don’t leave evidence for yourself. A small spiral notebook with the date, activity and immediate result will suffice.
Because of its association with deprivation, prevention has a bad rap. Think of it instead as a treat – that moment when you stretch your legs, striding uphill to greet the sunrise; or when you curl up with a warm bowl of French lentils, sautéed leeks and thyme from your garden. You’re worth it.
by Cheryl A. Salinas