Exercise and physical activity have been shown to have a potent effect on healthy ageing, improving quality of life and reducing the instances of chronic disease. However the management of other lifestyle factors such as sleep, nutrition and stress can be equally, if not more, beneficial. This article is a reminder that being healthy doesn't need to be complicated, exploring 4 basic ways we can stay healthy.
Increasing evidence suggests a strong association between both short and long duration of habitual sleep with adverse health outcomes. A 2010 population study of over a million people found a 12% increase in all-cause mortality in those who slept 5 hours per night. Chronic sleep deprivation in healthy individuals, even at low levels can increase risk of high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, as well as some forms of cancer, and have a negative effect on cognitive performance, mood, and stress. It is recommended that adults, on average get 7-9 hours of sleep per night.
The food you consume provides every cell with the energy it needs to function properly. Although there is no single diet that is optimal for everyone, there are general principles that can be applied to improve health and prevent chronic disease. Collective research shows that long term consumption of high caloric diets leads to obesity, heart disease and type 2 diabetes. As well as being a tool for prevention and risk reduction, dietary changes can be an effective way to treat chronic health conditions.
Depending on the person, water makes up somewhere between 50-80% of the human body accounting for large variances in lean muscle mass. Dehydration of as little as 2% loss of body weight results in impaired physiological responses and performance. Recommended daily intakes of water is 2.1L for females and 2.6L for males which equates to 8 and 10 cups respectively. Although this can be dependent on other factors like temperature and exertion.
An underappreciated primary cause of most chronic conditions is the lack of sufficient daily physical activity. Strong associations have been made in relation to physical inactivity and instances of strokes, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, some cancers, osteoporosis and many more. For those who live a sedentary lifestyle, even a small increase in physical activity can have significant benefits on managing and preventing chronic disease. An extra 15 minutes of brisk walking, 5 days each week, could reduce disease burden due to physical inactivity by an estimated 13%. It is recommended that all adults complete at least 150-300 minutes per week of moderate intensity aerobic exercise, or 75-150 minutes of vigorous intensity exercise.
If you or a loved one needs support and guidance with their diet or exercise we recommend speaking to a professional for life changing advice and support. Our accredited exercise physiologists and dietitian have had great success in improving the lives of their clients from the Sunshine Coast to Gympie. Call us on 54561599 and find out how we can help.