2012 is certainly an interesting time to be alive! Some say that the end of the world is coming, although most Boomers have been hearing that prediction, seemingly, forever! Others believe that we are all coming closer to enlightenment this year - a free upgrade, if you will. I am part of this latter group. I see more and more masters sharing their teachings with more and more students and making ancient healing traditions available to everyone. Miracles in health and wellness are happening every day!
For many of us Baby Boomers, these last several years have been fraught with caring for or watching our aging family members deal with health issues like Alzheimer's, Osteoporosis, Heart Disease and Cancer. Seeing these diseases so up close and personal has made us all the more determined not to go there, and we are steering ourselves onto a much different course than the previous generation.
At the start of each year, we typically resolve to get fit, take care of our health, etc. so I have included several tips for making those resolutions stick not only this year, but for the rest of our lives.
My recommendations for this year are, firstly, become more aware of your own body and any changes you feel. Early diagnosis of any disease increases your chances of beating it.
For instance, cancer is so much in the news these days. Several of my friends and family members have recently had their first colonoscopy, this year I'll be going for my second. In the last few years there've been some changes on the recommendations for this test, just as there've been recent changes on testing for Breast, Cervical, and Prostate cancers. Thermography is becoming more and more popular and I can't help but think that health insurance will cover this procedure soon - maybe this year! The studies that have been done, show that Thermography may be able to find a tumor much sooner than mammograms and larger, more scientific tests are being done now.
Stay on top of the latest testing available. In my blogs and articles I post information on any new studies that come out, as do many other health coaches and doctors. Read these posts, and then have a heart to heart with your doctor about new testing, any changes you feel or see in your body or diet, and your own family history. I know that my parents and many of their friends would never have discussed family history with their doctor nor did they really understand their own body in the same way that I do. This Baby Boomer generation is learning to take charge of our own health care, and not rely on someone who sees us only once a year and doesn't really know us. That's a good thing, as fellow Baby Boomer Martha Stewart would say!
Exercise and diet have been proven to help prevent Osteoporosis and Alzheimer's disease, as well as many of the heart disease issues like high blood pressure and weight gain. A diet rich in Omega 3's is a must these days, as well as plenty of fruit and vegetables. Wild salmon, walnuts, flaxseed and sardines provide Omega 3's, and dark fruits like blueberries and cherries have lots of antioxidants, while green leafy veggies like spinach, kale, broccoli and swiss chard provide plenty of vitamins and some calcium as well. Almonds are also a good source of calcium, and my personal favorite.
Moderate exercise, on a regular basis, over the long term, is the best way to keep your body going strong, and I recommend choosing something that you love to do. How about Salsa lessons? Or maybe you've always wanted to play tennis, or you swim like a fish. When you enjoy exercise it's easier to get out there and do it, so choose wisely, and keep it going! Start an early morning swim club or join a dance class in January and your body will thank you.
Social activity has also been shown to help keep our brain cells healthy so combining exercise with a social gathering is another great way to keep active, healthy and vital well into our golden years.
And don't forget your supplements. I know they've gotten some bad press recently, but I'm still a believer in their benefits. It's impossible to get all the vitamins and minerals we need from our food, so make sure your multi-vitamin has everything your body needs and then add some Fish oils, Magnesium and Vitamin D. I also take extra Vitamin C, especially at this time of year to keep my immune system functioning properly. Bring the supplements you're taking to your next doctor's appointment and discuss your blood levels with your doctor and get his/her recommendations for the supplements that will be most beneficial for you.
In addition, I would suggest that you make your resolutions as detailed as possible this year. Make them measurable as well.
For instance, instead of resolving to get in shape, or to lose some weight, here are some examples of measurable goals:
- I love swimming and I'm going to get to the pool early in the morning at least twice a month this year to swim for 30 minutes each time.
- Losing weight is important to me so I plan to keep a food log for the next 2 weeks and use it to cut out one high fat food from my diet this year. I'll plan to eat it as a treat 4 times during the year, but leave it out of my regular menu.
- Zumba is so much fun that I don't even realize I'm exercising! I resolve to make a minimum of 3 Zumba classes a month all year.
You can also work with a health coach. A good health coach will help set up a plan for you that will fit easily into your daily life, won't make you feel deprived, and set up new healthy habits that will stick with you over the long haul! If you'd like a free 20 minute session with me to discuss the benefits of a personalized wellness plan, please let me know!