The World Health Organization (WHO) defines health as ‘A complete state of mental, physical and social well-being not merely the absence of disease’. The one area of my lifestyle that I currently fail to meet guidelines in accordance with this organization is on physical fitness.
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WHO’s guidelines recommend physical activity for all ages. In my bracket (18-64), it is recommended that I do a minimum of 150 minutes weekly of moderate intensity aerobics in bouts of at least 10 minutes. Muscle strengthening undertakings should also be carried out at least twice a week.
This is in addition to leisure time, physical activities such as walking, hiking, swimming, gardening among others. This should be accompanied by taking of healthy balanced diet (Greenberg, Dintiman & Oakes, 2004). An analysis of my personal routine depicts that I fall short of following these guidelines. As such, I have resolved to adopt a different lifestyle to enhance my physical wellbeing
Choice of Lifestyle
My new choice of lifestyle will entail healthy eating and increased physical exercises. Eating a healthy diet will be necessary in weight management and improvement of the quality of life especially during my old age. Using scientific data to determine the amount of calories accrued from each food type, I will be able to regulate my intake to ensure I only take in the nutritionally recommended portions.
According to nutritionists, eating of more fruits and cereals is vital in the provision of vitamins and minerals. The vitamins contribute to the functioning of various body processes. These include in-tissue growth, as antioxidants and mediating in cellular regulation. By functioning as cofactors in enzymatic pathways, they facilitate the chemical reactions in the body cells.
Such other vitamins as biotin are essential in formation of fatty acids. I also intend to lower my fat intake (Richards, 2009). In response to that, I will adopt the use of only skim milk and fat free yogurt. This is, in addition, to shifting from full-fat salad dressing to non-fat alternatives. This is because fat has as twice much the amount of calories as protein or carbohydrate sources.
Furthermore, fats raise cholesterol levels in blood increasing the risk of pulmonary disorders. Taking appropriate ratios of carbohydrates, proteins, minerals such as potassium, iron and calcium and taking the recommended daily intake of water, my health will be on the way to recovery through losing unnecessary fat deposits (Winson, 2010).
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Adopting a well-informed physical exercise program is the other part of my healthy lifestyle change. Engaging in constant physical activity is known to burn calories. This, in turn, reduces the risk of accumulating excess amounts of energy trapped inform of adipose tissue in the body. This is essential in regulation of body weight.
Physical activity also promotes uptake of high-density lipoprotein; or the “good” cholesterol while decreasing the uptake of the low density cholesterol form known to be responsible for increasing risk of cardiovascular diseases and other disorders including stroke, diabetes, cancer and depression.
The physical activity on a regular basis also improves muscle strength and increases endurance. This is, in addition, to enhancing oxygen and nutrient delivery into body tissues. This boosts significantly the performance of the cardiovascular system enabling it to work efficiently (Hu, Liu & Willett, 2011). Therefore by adopting this new lifestyle, I will reap all these benefits and lose weight.
Short and Long Term Health Benefits
The benefits accrued from adopting the healthy lifestyle as described are numerous. In general terms, nutritious diet and regular exercise contribute immensely in improving the quality of life. According to medical and nutrition professionals, proper nutrition helps in curtailing the accumulation of unhealthy body fat and cholesterol. The appropriate diet will also result in reduced risk of cancers, diabetes, and hypertension and heart disorders.
This is because the diet provides all the necessary elements for maintenance of health (Thomson et al, 2011). Exercise, on the other hand, reduces the risk of premature death emanating from disorders related to inactive lifestyles.
By increasing the level of high-density cholesterol, exercise will minimize the risk of coronary and other related health complications. In the long run, regular exercise results in increased bone density; vital in prevention of osteoporosis. It also enhances general body composition through maintaining acceptable limits of tissue-to-body fat ratio thus discouraging overweight and obesity (Chodzko-Zajko et al, 2009).
The importance of adopting a healthy lifestyle cannot be overemphasized. The benefits accrued from leading a healthy lifestyle are numerous with the overall aspect being improving the quality of life. The WHO description of health as the absolute harmony among physical, mental and social life components and not necessarily absence of disease appropriately indicates that a healthy lifestyle is essential.
The simplicity with this can be achieved, however, depends solely on the individual. By adopting such measures as healthy nutrition, physical exercises, adequate rest, stress management and high self-esteem, one can effectively lead a healthy lifestyle. This has informed my decision to change my lifestyle so as to lose weight and lead a healthy lifestyle.
Chodzko-Zajko, et al, 2009, ‘Exercise and Physical Activity for Older Adults’, Medicine & Science In Sports & Exercise, 41, 7, pp. 1510-1530.
Greenberg JS, Dintiman GB, & Oakes BM, 2004, Physical Fitness and Wellness: Changing the Way You Look, Feel, and Perform. Champaign, Ill: Human Kinetics.
Hu F, Liu Y, & Willett W, 2011, ‘Preventing chronic diseases by promoting healthy diet and lifestyle: public policy implications for China’, Obesity Reviews, 12, 7, pp. 552-559.
Richards S, 2009, ‘The building blocks of a healthy diet’, Practice Nurse, 38, 3, pp. 12-17.
Thomson J, et al, 2011, ‘A Simulation Study of the Potential Effects of Healthy Food and Beverage Substitutions on Diet Quality and Total Energy Intake in Lower Mississippi Delta Adults’, Journal Of Nutrition, 141, 12, pp. 2191-2197.
Winson A, 2010, ‘The Demand for Healthy Eating: Supporting a Transformative Food ‘Movement”, Rural Sociology, 75, 4, pp. 584-600