This past fall the Affordable Care Act went into effect. As people have been painfully finding out, this new law has made health insurance not as affordable as what they had before, or they may not have any insurance at all. Although having health insurance was not cheap to begin with, people are now finding that their premiums and deductibles have skyrocketed making the business of getting sick almost prohibitive. Instead of hoping we don’t get sick that it would be better to develop habits that make us healthier? It’s been said that the best defense is a good offense, so here are some habits you can easily do everyday keep you healthy or improve your health:
- Exercise – If you want to feel better, have more energy, and even live longer, exercise is perhaps the single most important thing you can do. Regular exercise controls your weight, improves muscle tone and strength, improves circulation, improves your mood, gives you more energy during the day, and helps you sleep better. In fact, recent studies have found that exercise even stimulates the production of new brain cells – regardless of you age.
- Eat Dark Chocolate – Cocoa and dark chocolate (70% cocoa) are fantastic anti-oxidants protecting your cells against the damage of free radicals. This superfood helps to lower blood pressure, reduce arterial congestion, and improve circulation all of which are important in preventing heart attacks and stroke.
- Drink Green Tea – Also loaded with anti-oxidants and nutrients, green tea has been shown to improve brain function lowering the risk of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, improves fat metabolism helping to keep excess weight down, lower the risks of certain types of cancers, improves insulin sensitivity lowering the risk of type 2 diabetes, and has been shown to lower risk of death thereby improving longevity.
- Eat More Greens – Green leafy vegetables are powerhouses of nutrition. Being practically free of carbohydrates, they are loaded with vitamins, minerals, and proteins that are essential to keeping your body healthy. One of the most important vitamins supplied by these foods is Vitamin K that helps to regulate blood clotting, protects against osteoporosis, regulates inflammation and protects against inflammatory diseases, and may also protect against diabetes.
- Get Better Sleep – Getting a good night’s sleep is essential for health and wellbeing. Long, restful sleep helps you feel more alert during the day, think clearly, and focus better; it improves your immune system, blood pressure, and cardiovascular health; decreases the risk of obesity; and helps the body to repair itself during the night.
- Drink more water – Water is essential for life. Humans are the only animals that drink everything but water. Water is necessary for supporting good kidney and bowel function, energizing your muscles, maintaining fluid balance, and helping to control calories. Water is the universal solvent – all the reactions taking place in all of your cells happen in water, so you need water for proper cell function.
- Keep Moving – People who live the longest don’t just work out, they keep moving during the day. Sitting for hours at a time can be deadly. Make sure that you take breaks regularly to get up, stretch, walk around and move your body during the day.
- Start regular chiropractic care – I practice a system of chiropractic called Network Spinal Analysis. This is a gentle, light touch approach to adjusting the spinal system to achieve greater health and well-being. People under regular Network care report less concern about pain, better ability to deal with life’s stresses, less colds and flu, less dependence upon medications, improved mental and emotional states, improved enjoyment of life, and a better quality of life.
There are many other things one can do to improve health. But if you start with these 8 suggestions, you will go a long way to having less illness and enjoying a healthier body. Health insurance may be becoming unaffordable for people, but you can create your own “insurance” by adopting a lifestyle that promotes greater health.