wellnessLiving a healthy lifestyle is a matter of choice and like most good choices it takes conscious effort. People tend ignore how much bad habits impact their lives and our world.

By: Hindy Cortright from The BioFit Center for Sports and Health Magazine.

Each person is born with their own unique set of genes that are given by each biological parent. The genes that make up our bodies are encoded with certain pre-dispositions that are passed on from one generation to another within families. For example, certain families have a higher pre-disposition to develop diabetes type 1 or type 2, over other families. Scientists are still studying how much does a person’s lifestyle influence or affect this genetic coding with and although this is an ongoing research, scientist are convinced that our health can be managed to a great extend by our daily habits and the lifestyle we choose to follow

Top 9 habits to avoid:

  1. Smoking: Kills over 400,000 Americans each year.
  2. Alcohol abuse: Most suicides are alcohol related.
  3. Lack of sleep: Turn off the TV and instead read before bed. Sleep is crucial to mental health.
  4. Chemical abuse: Avoid overuse of prescription drugs, over the counter drugs and narcotics.
  5. Skipping meals: The body functions better if you eat at the same time every day and if you are consistent in the amount of calories you ingest each day. Avoid skipping breakfast.
  6. Over work and over stress. Keep a balance between your work load and your leisure time. Make sure to take time alone for yourself each day.
  7. Not getting a yearly check up. Women should see a general practitioner once a year starting at age 30, including yearly mammograms and paps. Men must also do a yearly physical exam starting at age 30. In health, prevention is the key!
  8. Eating or drinking too much sugar and processed foods. Sugar is linked to many conditions that affect your health such as high blood sugar levels and weight gain.
  9. Sedentary lifestyles. To stay healthy you need to move more. Walk, ride bikes and find ways to move more each day.

Being healthier is a simple equation. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is not as hard, it is a matter of making small good choices each day. To start turning your daily life toward a healthier one here are a few simple recommendations:

  • Make sure to sweat at least 30 minutes each day. Don’t worry so much about the how or the where, just make a point of engaging in any activity that will raise your heart rate and make you sweat.
  • Drink more water. Try to make sure to carry a bottle of water with you every day to facilitate you drinking it!.
  • Make healthy changes in each meal. Take a close look at what you are already eating for breakfast, lunch and dinner and ask yourself, How can this meal be healthier?. And make small changes one at a time. If you are eating white bread, switch to whole grain bread, if you are eating fried bananas, replace them with fresh bananas, and so on. There is always room for improvement.
  • Create a support group. Getting healthy with friends or family is always more fun, it will help you, your friends and family. Find people who also want to make healthy changes and stick together through the process.
  • Replace alcoholic drinks with wine. When socializing try to stick to red wine and try to cut down alcohol consumption to once a month if possible. Wine is healthier for you and still allows you to socialize at parties and gatherings.

When it comes to our health, our choices truly make us who we are. Make wise decisions to protect your health that will help you manage any potentially negative genetic inheritance. The motto,» You are what you eat» is not only true but it should also say: «You are what you drink, how much you move, how much you sleep and the result of every choice you make for your body!»