MAKING INFORMED CHOICES ABOUT HEALTHY, ACTIVE LIFESTYLES
The characteristics of a balanced, healthy lifestyle
Studies have shown that a balanced, healthy lifestyle will help you to feel better and live longer. Taking exercise, not drinking too much alcohol, eating enough fruit and vegetables and not smoking can add up to 14 years to your life.
Research involving 20,000 people over 10 years found those who did not follow a healthy lifestyle were four times more likely to have died than those who did. The findings held true regardless of how overweight or poor the people studied were. The findings showed that it was in the reduction of deaths related to cardiovascular disease that people benefited most
Which things contribute to a healthy, balanced lifestyle?Eating a healthy and balanced dietRegular exerciseMaintaining a healthy body weightNot smokingSensible alcohol consumptionMinimising stress
Regular exercise current government recommendationsAdults a minimum of 30 mins moderate physical activity on five or more days a week.
Children and young people aged 5-18 should participate in physical activity of moderate intensity for one hour a day
An unhealthy lifestylePoor diet e.g. excess fat, sugar, salt, protein and insufficient complex carbohydrate, vitamin/mineral and fluid intake.Inactivity and lack of exercise.Being overweight, which increases risk of certain types of cancers, high blood pressure, heart disease and diabetes.
An unhealthy lifestyleSmoking, which causes lung cancer, heart disease, chronic bronchitis, emphysema and is a risk factor for many cancers.Excess alcohol consumption, which increases risk of liver disease, and mouth, throat and oesophageal (food pipe) cancer, and can contribute to obesity.High stress levels, whether associated with work, ineffective time management, or general lifestyle habits.
An active lifestyle involving regular exercise often leads to the following benefits:A corresponding recognition of the importance of a balanced, healthy diet. This in turn helps to control weight, reduce cholesterol, reduce the risk of certain cancers and diabetes and increase energy levels.It keeps the heart muscle in shape and makes the heart a more efficient pump, reducing the risk of high blood pressure and heart disease.It can also lead to psychological benefits such as promoting a feeling of well-being, favourable body image and improved self esteem.It can also reduce stress and promote a better social life/making friends.
The indicators of health and well-beingText book p.85