We all know that when our loved ones are not in good health it is not an easy situation. Most of us have many others who depend on us. When we become dysfunctional due to ill health everything around us can get impacted. For this reason we need to try and keep us healthy. In order to keep us healthy we need to try and prevent us getting sick and take necessary treatments when we need them.
We at Princeton Kidney care believe that prevention is the most effective way of fighting serious illnesses which can make us dysfunctional of even cost our lives. This is why we give a serious focus to our experience in Internal Medicine in order to guide our patients to be healthier.
Most health issues can be prevented by adopting a healthy lifestyle. A healthy lifestyle involves good dietary habits, Exercise, being happy, healthy habits and timely health fitness reviews amongst many other things.
Why do we need to have a healthy diet?
Our diet provides the necessary nutrients to live and keep us healthy. When you eat things that are good for your body it improves your strength and keeps you away from health issues. When your food includes things that are not suitable to your health (such as excess amount of sugar, lipids, starch, toxic chemicals); your body would react against those in various ways. Such reactions in most of the times can damage your internal organs in an irrecoverable manner.
What types of Foods are good for health?
- Fruits and Vegetables - Eating fruits and vegetables can help prevent heart disease and strokes. It can also help prevent certain types of cancers. One should attempt to eat fruits and vegetables at each meal and for snacks. When it is difficult to find fresh fruits and vegetables, you can eat frozen or canned ones instead. We would recommend eating 5 or more servings of fruits and vegetables each day.
- Foods with fiber – Eating foods with a lot of fiber can help prevent heart disease and strokes. If you have type 2 diabetes, it can also help control your blood sugar. Foods that have a lot of fiber include vegetables, fruits, beans, nuts, oatmeal, and some breads and cereals. You can tell how much fiber is in a food by reading the nutrition label which appears on the product. We recommend eating 20 to 35 grams of fiber each day.
- Foods with folate (also called Folic Acid) – Folate is a vitamin that is important for pregnant women and women who plan to get pregnant. Pregnant women need to get enough folate so that their unborn baby can grow normally. Folate is found in many breakfast cereals, oranges, orange juice, and green leafy vegetables.
- Foods with calcium and vitamin D – Infants, children, and adults need calcium and vitamin D to help keep their bones strong. Adults also need calcium and vitamin D to help prevent osteoporosis. Osteoporosis is a condition that causes bones to get thin and break more easily than usual. Different foods and drinks have calcium and vitamin D in them. People who don’t get enough calcium and vitamin D in their diet might need to take a supplement. Supplements are pills, capsules, liquids, or tablets that have nutrients in them.
There are different types of fats. Some types of fats are better for your body than others. Unhealthy fats are:
- Trans fats – These are found in margarines, many fast foods, and some store-bought baked goods.
- Saturated fats – These are found in red meats, butter, and many cheeses.
Both trans fats and saturated fats can raise your cholesterol level and your chance of getting heart disease. Try to avoid eating foods with these types of fats.
Healthier fats are:
- Monounsaturated fats
- Polyunsaturated fats
If you need to use oil for cooking we recommend using oils with these healthier fats, such as olive oil and canola oil.
Consumption of Alcohol
Old wisdom suggests that “too much of anything is good for nothing”. Consuming small amounts of alcohol like Red Wine can lower the chances of heart disease. However alcohol can increase your risk of getting lever diseases and certain types of Cancers. Alcohol can at times become addictive and too much of alcohol in your blood can reduce your concentration and balance and at times can create other social problems.
How many calories do I need each day?
The number of calories you need each day depends on your weight, height, age, sex, and how active you are. If you plan to reduce your weight through diet you should plan to reduce your calorie intake a little bit.
Exercise is an essential factor to keep you healthy. Sometimes too much of dieting could result malnutrition. If you mix good dietary habits with exercise it would increase your chances of having a better health. If you can find time to do at least 20 minutes of brisk walk three days a week or involve in an activity like swimming, sports or visit your local gym it would provide you enough exercise which you need.
If you have to be busy at your work and you are not the type of person who can find time for exercise, use technique like using a distant parking lot to park your car. Use stairs to reach to your office than an elevator, and take some time to do a walk during your lunch break.
Good Health Habits
Below are some of the good health habits which can be listed.
- If you are a smoker we encourage you to quit smoke. Smoking can be at times worse than consuming alcohol because it can affect many of your internal organs. It can affect others due to passive smoking.
- Stick to one partner and avoid risky practices that can expose you to diseases like HIV, Hepatitis, Tuberculosis and many other dangerous illnesses. Try to avoid direct blood contact with others in a risky manner.
- If you have to use facilities like public toilets, mass transit; be sure to clean your hands before you leave those places because sometimes things like door handles which are touched by large number of people can contain lot of germs which can make your sick.
- If you are sick please try to ensure that you attempt to reduce spreading germs to the others around you. For example if you have to suddenly cough in the middle of a crowd, use your palm as a means to shield others from it.
- Routine Health Checkups
Even if you are not feeling sick it is important that you do a review of your health with your family Physician. When you reach certain ages it is important to perform the required tests to ensure that you do not have any major health risk. This is important because there is no better way to be healthy than becoming preventive.