Choose Health: Dodge Obesity and Beat Disease with Smarter Daily Choices

Take a moment to think about your health and the quality of your life. You might notice that as your health improves, so too does your quality of life. But, if your quality of life decreases due to factors like stress or financial difficulties, your health is often negatively affected as well. This is because quality of life and state of health go hand in hand: a relationship we must take responsibility for maintaining.

Unfortunately, many people ignore this responsibility, leading to a decline in America’s overall state of health. This neglect contributes to a significant growth in potentially life-threatening diseases that, according to recent reports, could affect staggering numbers of people by 2030. Although some health issues may be beyond our control, many can be avoided with better lifestyle choices, especially in the realm of obesity.

Avoiding Obesity

Controllable and even reversible, obesity is a major factor behind the rise in diabetes, coronary heart disease, and stroke that is projected to reach devastating levels in less than 20 years. Dr. Maureen Braun warns that by 2030, more than half of Americans could be obese, resulting in millions of new cases of diabetes, coronary heart disease, and stroke. This trend could cost the United States up to $66 billion in treatment and over $500 billion in lost economic productivity.

The connection between obesity and an increased risk for other illnesses is well-documented. As a direct result of obesity, diabetes is predicted to affect 6 million new people, heart disease and stroke will strike 5 million new people, and cancer will afflict nearly 500,000 additional people. Furthermore, obesity can lead to pulmonary diseases and arthritis. Thus, maintaining a healthy weight could prevent many individuals from becoming victims of debilitating diseases.

The Importance of Education

If people understood the long-term health implications of consuming foods high in high-fructose corn syrup, hydrogenated oils, simple sugars, trans fats, and pesticide-drenched fruits and vegetables, they might think twice before indulging in such items. Education is key to making informed, healthier choices.

Water, for example, can be chosen over soft drinks, which can save you from consuming empty calories and experiencing blood sugar spikes. Fish can be chosen over chicken, and chicken over beef. Healthier cooking methods, such as grilling, can be employed instead of frying. Whole grain foods can be prioritized over processed alternatives. Even in neighborhoods where grocery stores may not have the most well-stocked or diverse offerings, healthier options can still be explored.

Make Better Choices Now

Understanding the health effects of various foods allows you to make choices that positively impact your body. By making better food choices in the present moment, you are taking a step back from obesity and reducing your risk for diabetes, heart disease, stroke, arthritis, and cancer.

Similarly, the principles of exercise should be incorporated into daily life. Exercise and diet together form the foundation of good health and can help to prevent the onset of various diseases. Have you looked around and seen people who are truly sick and suffering with chronic pain and illness? Think about those faces in hospitals and clinics, relying on large doses of chemical drugs to keep them alive through their pain. Is that a future you would want for yourself?

Your Power Over Your Health

The choice to live a healthier life ultimately lies with you. Instead of becoming a part of the alarming obesity statistics, take charge of your choices. Learn about the deadly diseases associated with obesity and observe those who are already suffering from obesity-related conditions. These individuals often experience a very poor quality of life, and if you want better for yourself, start making wiser choices today.

Incorporate physical activity into your routine, whether it’s walking, yoga, ballroom dancing, martial arts, or biking. Opt for fresher, greener, whole foods and drink more water than other kinds of beverages.

You have the power to make better choices and change your life. Help yourself improve your health and quality of life by making healthier choices. They truly go hand in hand, like two sides of a coin! With advances in medical technology helping people live longer, wouldn’t it be great to enjoy those golden years in robust health? In reality, it’s up to you! So, every time you reach into your pocket to pay for a snack, meal, or drink, pause and think about your choices. Improve them if you can because, most likely, you can.