Frank Salvatore
Health and Lifestyle

Fitness and Food for Life

January 1, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Recent research suggests poor lifestyle choices may contribute to illnesses such as cancer, diabetes, obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure and other conditions associated with early death.

While no magic diet or workout will effortlessly give you a longer life, nutrition experts have a better understanding of what foods could prevent illnesses and diseases that drastically reduce our longevity. It’s also becoming quite clear how daily activity levels and regular exercise play equally important roles.

Sitting can be deadly

It’s been recently concluded that the time the average person spends sitting – eight to twelve hours or more per day – greatly increases the chance of contracting a disease or condition that leads to premature death. This holds true even for those who exercise regularly.

While exercising more may counter some of the effects of sitting, because basic activities such as driving, doing office work or watching TV keep us sitting throughout the day, to really make a difference we need to find ways to sit less often.

Start by noting the number of hours you sit each day, and make small goals to reduce that number each week. Take short walking breaks at work, or work standing up if you can. You could also cut back on your TV time, or at least get up and do a few chores during commercials.

Get moving

Everyone knows that doctors and health experts recommend daily exercise, so why are we still holding out for that magic diet or workout? If you don’t stop making excuses, you could be cutting your life short.

No matter what age you are or what condition you’re in, studies show it’s never too late to start exercising. While any adult who hasn’t been active should consult their physician – particularly if they’re being treated for an illness or disease – starting out with just 10-minutes sessions of activity can get you on your way to a healthier lifestyle.

Foods to live by

In comparing the longevity of populations around the world, it’s clear that certain groups live significantly longer than others. Recent studies focusing on the local diet in these regions have shown a direct correlation between healthy food choices and an increased life expectancy.

Fruits, vegetables and whole grains such as oats and barley are low in calorie and packed with fiber, which can help with weight control and reduce risk of cardiovascular disease and other conditions. To give your brain a healthy boost add in unsaturated oils like olive oil and antioxidant-rich foods like blueberries and walnuts, as they can help protect against age-related brain issues such as memory loss or dementia. To protect both the heart and the brain eat plenty of omega-3 rich fish and shellfish.

Bone loss and osteoporosis are another concern as we age, but calcium from dairy foods and dark leafy greens along with vitamin D from sunshine and supplements can help slow the degenerative process.

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Frank Salvatore