No one relishes the idea of going to the doctor – you wait for ages with apprehensive patients and risk picking up everyone’s germs. So can you stay out of the doctor’s and keep yourself well? These are tips from doctors on how…
Drink sensibly: It will help beat liver, brain and heart disease, high blood pressure, fertility problems and certain cancers such as cancer of the mouth. Women should drink not more than three units of alcohol a day and men should drink no more than four.
A unity is half a pint of lager, a small measure of spirits or a small glass of wine. And no, you’re not allowed to save up all your units for the weekend, because binging is one of the worst things you can do to your health.
The main dangers in the long term for heavy drinkers include liver cirrhosis and heart disease, and, according to research, women develop diseases such as cirrhosis after a comparatively shorter period of heavy drinking, and at a lower intake than men.
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*Quit smoking: It will help beat many forms of cancer, including cancer of the lungs and mouth, coronary heart disease and emphysema. Stopping smoking is the single most important thing you can do to benefit your health.
Within just 48 hours, you’ll have a demonstrably improved ability to walk upstairs; within three months, your heart disease risk drops to what it would be if you’d never smoked, and after five years, your lung cancer risk reduces to virtually zilch.
*Eat an apple a day: It will help beat minor bugs and infections, and bowel cancer. Apples do help to keep the doctor away, but you should also tuck into everything else in the fruit bowl. Aim to eat at least five varied portions of fruits and vegetables every day to boost immunity.
As your vitamin levels rise, you’ll see an improvement in your resistance to minor bugs and infections. Research also shows fresh fruits and vegetables can cut your risk of getting bowel cancer and other forms of cancers too. Studies have shown that vitamin pills are no substitute for good old-fashioned food. Plant chemicals in fruit and vegetables appear to interact in complex ways, producing additional benefits in the body.
*Go for a walk: It will help beat the blues, circulation problems, obesity and associated disorders including back pain, high blood pressure and coronary artery disease. Exercise is the best way to boost your circulation, improve your muscle tone and your mood.
There’s also growing evidence that it can protect you from bowel and breast cancers. Take brisk exercise at least three times a week for 20 – 30 minutes – you could try walking, cycling, swimming or dancing.
*Eat fish: It will help aches and pains. Eat 1 – 2 portions of oily fish every week. Sardines are particularly rich in Omega-3 fatty acids – the magic ingredient that can maintain a healthy heart and ease rheumatoid aches and pains. Vegetarians can get Omega-3 fatty acids from walnuts, sweet potatoes and linseed oil.’
*Go Italian: Eat more tomatoes. They’re rich in lycopene, a powerful antioxidant. Plenty of onions and garlic are also recommended. They all have antiviral, antifungal, antibacterial, and antioxidant properties.
*Stay safe in the sun: It will help beat heat stroke, eye damage, heat exhaustion, and skin cancer. The Cancer Research Campaign advises you to stay out of the sun – particularly between the hours of 11 am and 3 pm. And always use a sunscreen with SPF of 15 or above. Wear sunglasses and make sure your kids are well protected.
*Use hydro-power: It will beat a sluggish circulation and an inefficient immune system. Drink enough fluids to hydrate your skin and get your digestive system going. Two litres a day should do it – drink more of it if you’re exercising. A cold three-minute system and stimulate your circulation.
*Chill out: It helps beat IBS, mouth ulcers, high blood pressure, minor infections, headaches, and skin problems such as eczema. Learning to relax can help you to avoid any tension-related complaints. So make to put your feet up – that’s doctor’s orders!