Let’s keep our New Years Resolutions going! Taking care of yourself is a year round job. To help, I put together a few simple health tips that all women can benefit from.
If you experience stress over a prolonged period of time, it could become chronic, unless you take action. Here are a few ways to help you de-stress:
Laugh more: Laughing not only eases stress, promotes social bonding, and lowers blood pressure; it may also boost your immune system. So bring some humor into your life, whether it’s through friends or even a new TV show
Get more sleep: Seven to eight hours of sleep a night not only helps you live longer, but also lowers your stress, and sharpens your memory.
Try taking up yoga: Yoga eases stress, lowers blood pressure, slows heart rates, and increases flexibility.
Don’t Skip Regular Check Ups
Regular health exams and tests can help find problems before they start. They also can help find problems early, when your chances for treatment are better. As a woman, you need some special exams and screenings. During your routine checkup, your health care provider will usually do:
A pelvic exam – an exam to check if internal female organs are normal by feeling their shape and size.
A Pap test – a test to check for cancer of the cervix, the opening to a woman’s uterus. Cells from the cervix are examined under a microscope.
A clinical breast exam – to check for breast cancer by feeling and looking at your breasts.
Lather on the Sunscreen
Ultraviolet light from the sun and tanning beds can cause skin cancer and wrinkles. Make sure to use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with Sun Protection Factor (SPF) 30 or higher for protection from ultraviolet A (UVA) and ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation.
Know What Symptoms To Look For
Heart disease is the leading cause of death for women in the US. In order to prevent being a victim, you need to know what signs to lookout for. According to The American Heart Association, here are the most common signs of a heart attack:
Chest pain and radiating discomfort in the left arm
Shortness of breath
Know Your Numbers
Make sure you know your heart’s vital signs. These include blood pressure (which ideally should be below 115 over 75), LDL cholesterol (under 100), resting heart rate (under 70), and fasting blood sugar (under 100). If your numbers aren’t ideal, change your diet until they improve.
Choose a healthy eating plan
Choose foods low in saturated fat, trans fat, and sodium. As part of a healthy diet, eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, fiber-rich whole grains, fish (preferably oily fish-at least twice per week), nuts, legumes and seeds and try eating some meals without meat. Select lower fat dairy products and poultry (skinless). Limit sugar-sweetened beverages and red meat. If you choose to eat meat, select the leanest cuts available.
Be physically active
You can slowly work up to at least 2½ hours (150 minutes) of moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity (e.g., brisk walking) every week or 1 hour and 15 minutes (75 minutes) of vigorous intensity aerobic physical activity (e.g., jogging, running) or a combination of both every week. Additionally, on 2 or more days a week you need muscle-strengthening activities that work all major muscle groups (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest shoulders, and arms). Children should get at least 60 minutes of activity every day.
Try to drink green tea two to three times a day. It’s loaded with polyphenols like flavonoids and catechins, which function as powerful antioxidants. Green tea also delivers a boost of alertness, but from a smaller dose of caffeine than black tea.
Roughly half of us are deficient in vitamin D, which the sun is, a major source. This crucial vitamin may aid in fighting cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. Most doctors recommend taking a 1,000 IU supplement each morning in addition to your everyday women’s multivitamin.
Remember to Floss
No matter how thoroughly or long you brush your teeth, you’re missing a good portion of their total surface. The dangers of skipping floss go beyond hygiene: The bacteria that linger can increase your risk of heart disease. Try using Reach Ultraclean floss, which stretches to glide between teeth.