Have you made your New Year resolutions for 2017? Here are some top health tips from your local NHS
The New Year is a great way to get the motivation you need to stay fit and healthy. West London CCG is encouraging everyone in the borough to stay well with some simple and effective health tips. Put wellbeing top of your New Year resolutions list for 2017!
Dr Fiona Butler, Chair of West London CCG says:
“After the winter festivities, we often feel a bit out of shape if we eat or drink too much. Start 2017 by looking after yourself and living a healthy lifestyle.”
Boost your physical and mental health through exercise
Whatever your age, being physically active helps you lead a healthier and even happier life. Exercise is a great way to boost your mental health, including your self-esteem, mood, sleep quality and energy. It also reduces your risk of stress and depression.
People who do regular physical activity have:
- up to a 35% lower risk of coronary heart disease and stroke
- up to a 50% lower risk of type 2 diabetes
To stay healthy, adults should try to be active daily and aim to achieve at least 150 minutes of physical activity over a week through a variety of activities.
Find out more about the benefits of exercise here.
Half of all long-term smokers die early from smoking-related diseases, including heart disease, lung cancer and chronic bronchitis. Stopping smoking is the single best thing you can do for your health. Help is on hand from your local NHS so you can quit smoking for good.
Speak to your GP, who can enrol you in a stop smoking clinic and prescribe nicotine replacement therapy such as patches and gum, or stop smoking medication such as Champix. You can also find your nearest NHS Stop Smoking Service on the NHS Smokefree website, or call the Smokefree National Helpline to speak to a trained adviser on 0300 123 1044.
Cut down on sugar in your food and drink
Eating too much sugar can lead to weight gain, which increases your risk of long term health conditions such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
Cut down on sugary fizzy drinks by substituting them for water, lower-fat milks, or sugar-free, diet and no added sugar drinks. Swap a bowl of sugary breakfast cereal for plain cereals such as porridge oats which contain vitamins, minerals and fibre.
Some packaging uses a colour-coded system that makes it easy to choose foods that are lower in sugar, salt and fat. Look for more ‘greens’ and ‘ambers’ and fewer ‘reds’ in your shopping basket.
Choosing healthier foods is easier than you may think. Try these small changes when you have your next meal or drink.
Reduce your alcohol intake and feel the benefits straight away
Long-term heavy drinking can lead to your heart becoming enlarged. Drinking can also can disrupt your sleep patterns and stop you sleeping deeply.
When you cut down the amount you drink, you will notice the effects immediately. These include feeling better in the mornings, being less tired during the day, and you may stop gaining weight. Your skin may start to look better and you will start to feel fitter. If you already feel anxious or sad, drinking can make this worse, so cutting down may put you in a better mood generally.
For further health tips, visit the NHS Choices website.