In Lifestyle

The best version of yourself

While many of us are staying home and reducing social outings, this means we have some extra time on our hands. Take this extra time to focus on making yourself as healthy as possible. We often put ourselves on the back burner in favor of others. Giving yourself some extra attention to keeping up with your current health will ensure that you can enjoy a longer life well beyond this pandemic.

1. Take some time for self-evaluation
When was the last time you had your physical? How often are you exercising? Are you working on strength and balance, in addition to cardiovascular activity? Are you finding healthy outlets for stress, such as meditation, painting, or a hobby? Are you staying mentally engaged, through online learning, reading, or games/puzzles? Turn your focus inward and look critically at what else you can do for yourself.

2. Keep up with your physicals.
Scheduling and attending your annual physicals help identify early indicators of a more serious illness, like heart disease, diabetes, high cholesterol, or high blood pressure.

3. Continue to eat 5 colors a day of fruits and vegetables.
While it’s easy to say “eat healthy” to stay healthy, one excellent way to ensure you’re getting enough variety in your diet is to eat five different colors of fruits and vegetables during the day. An omelet with spinach and peppers for breakfast, a salad that has tomatoes, radicchio, bell peppers, and carrots for lunch will quickly get you to your five colors. Try to challenge yourself to see what other new ingredients you can include when making your next meal at home!

If you want to learn more about which foods can benefit you even further, check out the book 101 Foods That Could Save Your Life by David Grotto.

4. Take steps to prevent skin cancer.
The American Cancer Society recommends applying a broad-spectrum, water-resistant sunscreen that’s SPF 30 or higher. Look for labels that include UVA and UVB protection, since both types can harm your skin.

Men are particularly vulnerable to skin cancer, especially in their golden years. Balding or even thinning hair exposes the scalp, as well as the tops of the ears, to harmful rays. The nose is also at greater risk. You may enter retirement looking forward to leisure time, but, instead, spend some of that time needing treatment for skin cancer. The good news is, it’s within your control to reduce your risk. It’s never too late to safeguard yourself against this disease, and that starts with early and regular use of sunscreen—not just in the spring and summer, but all year round.

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