Health and Exercise
Diet and exercise. You've heard it before. A lot. And for good reason it turns out. In fact, these two old friends may be the single most important controls you have over your health. More than stress. Hopefully more than environment. Almost postively more than genetics.
Living Longer, Not Healthier
We are living longer. Average lifespan now is 78.5 in America. That's up from 76.8 ten years ago. Good. But the downside? Obesity is up to 28%. Hypertension is up to 30%. Diabetes is up to 10%. So even if we weren't living longer, it might seem longer because of the challenges. High rates of chronic diseases are robbing us of enjoying the added years. Not to mention the burden on the individual, their family, their friends, their employers, their finances and on our healthcare systems.
Is There Any Good News?
Well yes. Studies of populations around the world have given us some clues for achieving healthier lives. Little things like walking more, taking the stairs, getting up from your office chair and moving around a bit. Smaller portions at meal time. More whole foods. Much more vegetables. And trying to stay less stressed. Somehow. The mysteries of prebiotics and probiotics are coming to center stage now. That's good. Science is beginning to highlight the importance of the 100 trillion bacteria that co-exist with us in our guts. Lots of things left to discover.
Back To Nature
Every year we learn more about what to eat and what to avoid. And in what amounts. Rules for ourselves, our kids, our babies. Even our infants-on-the-way and their moms-to-be. Vitamin D is a good thing, whether from getting a little sun, or when taken by pill. Omega-3 is good, in natural foods or by supplement. Coffee has some pluses, being a nutrient-rich bean from nature. Even listening to music is good for your physical and mental health (if you pick the music).