It is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle whatever your age. This can help you to live longer and reduce your risk of health problems. Making small changes into new habits can make a big difference to your long term health.
Five steps to healthy living
Take one step at a time:
- Stop Smoking: Giving up smoking is the single most important thing you can do to improve your health. By stopping smoking you reduce your risk of lung cancer and are less likely to die from coronary heart disease or stroke.1 Speak to your local Rowlands Pharmacy team for information on local stop smoking services and personalised support and advice.
- Eat a well balanced healthy diet: Eat 5 portions of fruit or vegetables daily (not including potatoes), try to vary the type and colour of fruit to get maximum benefit. Aim to eat at least 2 portions of fish each week, including one portion of oily fish. Keep saturated fat levels in your diet low. This can be found in cakes, butter, lard, cheese, amongst other foods. It is recommended men eat less than 30g and women less than 20g of saturated fat daily.2 Watch your salt. Adults should eat a maximum of 6g of salt a day. One way to keep this in check is not to add salt to meals when cooking and to reduce the amount of processed food you eat.
- Be Active: Aim to complete 150 minutes of physical activity each week. This can be broken into 5 x 30 minutes sessions of moderate activity each week or even down into 15 x 10 minute sessions.2 Activity does not have to be organised events. Find something you enjoy doing and make it part of your daily routine. Start bu taking part in small amounts of activity and slowly build this up. This can include gardening, cleaning etc.
- Understand your weight. Your Body Mass Index (BMI) is used to determine if you are a healthy weight for your height. Ask a member of your Rowlands Pharmacy team to help you find out your BMI. A BMI of between 18.5 ad 24.9 is within the healthy range. A BMI above 25 indicates your weight may be affecting your health. Whilst it is important to understand your BMI, where you carry fat throughout the body can also influence your risk of health problems. Carrying weight around your middle (apple shaped) carries a higher risk that carrying weight around your hips (pear shaped).
- Drink Sensibly: Know your limits. The Low risk drinking guidelines are the same for men and women. The UK Chief Medical Officers’ (CMO) advise to keep health risks from alcohol to a low
level, it is safest not to drink more than 14 units a week on a regular basis. You should also try to have at least 2 alcohol free days a week.
Remember it's never too late to change and small changes continued over a long time can have a positive impact on your health.
Speak to member of your local Rowlands Pharmacy team who can help you get started today.
At each of our Pharmacies there is a highly qualified Pharmacist. Each Pharmacist specialises in the knowledge of medicines, dosages, interactions and how medicines act on the body. They are available to answer any queries you have concerning your medication and can tell you which counter medicines are safe to take with your medication.
Pharmacists are also highly trained in recognising symptoms of disease and where appropriate, recommending either treatment or referral to your doctor. Our pharmacy staff are also trained to give you advice on counter medicines.
Within each of our pharmacies we display a comprehensive range of self-care advice cards covering a range of conditions. These are free of charge and provide a handy guide for customers.
1. NHS Smoke Free http://smokefree.nhs.uk
2. NHS Choices www.nhs.uk/livewell