5 Simple Steps for a Longer Life
Growing older and healthier! No matter how old you are, you should be concerned about your health. But once you hit the half-century mark, what are the most important steps to take to maintain your health as you age?
In this NBC4 video, Dr. Jackie Eghrari-Sabet, of Family ENT, Allergy & Asthma Center with offices in Gaithersburg, Olney and Frederick, MD, offers five simple steps to take after 50 to live a longer life:
- Knowledge is power. Take control of your health by knowing your cholesterol levels, triglycerides, and blood pressure.
- Make physical activity a priority. By simply taking 20 to 30 minutes to walk vigorously three times per week you can reduce your risk of premature death by more than 50 percent. In addition to living longer, you’ll live better, as exercise improves mood, memory, cognition, sleep, cholesterol, and blood pressure while reducing stress and making weight control much easier.
- See the humor in things and laugh. 15 minutes of laughter per day has the same benefit to cardiovascular health as 30 minutes of aerobic exercise. In addition to improving the health and function of blood vessels, laughter improves mood by increasing “happy” brain chemicals, and reduces pain and anxiety.
- Watch your waistline and make sure you work to keep it in check. The waist is a much better indicator of health and life expectancy than just weight, as fat that deposits in the abdomen exerts more negative hormonal effects on the body and raises blood pressure, cholesterol, and diabetes risk.
- Make sleep a priority. It has many of the physical effects of exercise, and when you don’t get enough, stress hormones increase, metabolism slows, and the brain becomes less efficient in every operational task.