A New Year is beginning and there is no better time than this for people to make positive health changes for the coming New Year. In this vein the American Medical Association (AMA) has published 10 tips by Sara Berg to help people make healthier choices for themselves and their loved ones for the coming 2020 New Year.
1. Lifestyle Change Program for Type 2 Diabetes
Take a free online test to see if you are at risk for type 2 diabetes. If you are at risk, consult with a physician who can recommend participation in a lifestyle change program for type 2 diabetes. Research has shown that following a healthy diet, getting enough physical activity and exercise and losing 5-7% of body weight can help to prevent developing type 2 diabetes. Participating in a lifestyle change program can reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes by more than 50%.
2. Get more Physical Activity and Exercise
According to the 2018 Physical Activity Guidelines, about 80% of American adults and teens do not get enough physical exercise. Adults should participate in at least 150 minutes a week of moderate-intensity physical activity or 75 minutes of more vigorous and intense physical activity.
3. Keep Blood Pressure under Control
Keep your blood pressure under control to lower the risk for a heart attack or stroke. See our blog post from March 11, 2019 about how even moderate alcohol drinking can raise blood pressure.
4. Cut Down on Drinking Alcohol
Cut down on drinking alcohol. According to the guidelines by the US Dietary Guidelines, a woman should not drink more than 1 glass a day of alcoholic beverages. Men should not drink more than two glasses a day of alcoholic drinks.
5. Stay away from Processed Foods and Sugar-sweetened Drinks
Stay away from processed foods, especially with added salt and sugar. Also, drink more water and drink less sugar-sweetened drinks.
6. Take Antibiotics only as Prescribed and Instructed by your Doctor
Take antibiotics only as prescribed and instructed by your doctor in order to prevent the development of antibiotic resistant strains of bacteria. The misuse of antibiotics, especially in agriculture, has given rise to resistant strains that no longer can cure certain kinds of infections.
7. Ask your Doctor to help you Quit Smoking
Your doctor can give you aids that have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to help you quit smoking. Electronic cigarettes are not considered safe and should not be used to help quit smoking. The AMA suggests making your home and car smoke-free to reduce the exposure of you and your loved ones to second-hand smoke.
8. Pain Medication
If you are taking medicine for pain like prescribed opioids, take them and store them according to your physician’s instructions. If there are unused medicines, make sure to dispose of them in a safe and proper way. There is an online search tool to help you find the nearest public drug-disposal location.
Be certain that you and your loved ones have had all had the recommended vaccinations. Don’t forget the annual flu shot for everyone six months old or older.
10. Manage Stress
Manage stress by participating in physical activity, socializing with friends or family and by participating in activities that are relaxing. Do not hesitate or feel ashamed if you feel you need professional help and counseling.
Look for a Rehab or Skilled Nursing Care Facility that Matches the AMA’s Health Recommendations for the New Year
If you or your loved one are looking for a short-term rehab choose one that matches most of the AMA’s Recommendations for the New Year. For instance, the Park Crescent Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center in East Orange, New Jersey has a state-of-the-art heart SMART rehabilitation program for all kinds of heart problems. This includes instructions on how to make healthy dietary and lifestyle changes. In fact, there are even lessons on how to cook healthy meals at home once you or your loved one return home. Emphasis is also placed on the proper kinds of physical exercises and management of medicines that can help keep the heart healthy. Park Crescent also offers fine dining with healthy and delicious meals under the guidance of a professional dietitian. If you or your loved one have diabetes, Park Crescent has expert diabetes monitoring and care including diabetic wound care. To top it off Park Crescent has a fantastic array of recreational activities to keep you or your loved one happy and relaxed.
Really we should all try to follow the AMA’s 10 tips for a healthy 2020 New Year!