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Prevention

Take Steps to Start Living a Healthy Lifestyle Today

Eat right: One of the most important things you can do to prevent chronic disease is to eat a healthy diet.

  • Have at least five servings of vegetables and fruits each day.
  • Choose whole grains over processed grains. To determine if a food is made with whole grains, look for “whole wheat” or another whole grain as the first ingredient on the label.
  • Limit your consumption of refined carbohydrates, including pastries, sweetened cereals, soft drinks, and other foods high in sugar.
  • Substitute healthier fats for not-so-healthy ones. Choose monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, such as olive oil, canola oil, and peanut oil, instead of butter, margarine, and lard.
  • Watch your portion sizes. Most Americans eat much more food than they need.

Get active: Being physically active for at least 30 minutes on five or more days each week can help reduce your risk for disease.

  • Use the stairs instead of the elevator.
  • Take a 10-minute activity break at work to stretch or take a quick walk, or use your lunch break to add some activity to your day.
  • Wear a pedometer and strive to increase the number of steps you take each day.
  • Join a sports or recreation team.
  • Use a stationary bicycle or treadmill while watching TV.

Don’t smoke: Smoking is the single most preventable cause of disease and death in the United States. The habit causes almost one-third of all cancer deaths and one-fifth of deaths from heart disease and stroke.

See your doctor: Your doctor can help you stay healthy by providing guidance.

  • Prevention – Your doctor can help identify your unhealthy lifestyle habits and offer advice on better choices.
  • Screening – Tests can help find health problems early, when they can be treated more easily and effectively. Your doctor can recommend the most appropriate screenings for you.
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