8 points for this year’s health and wellness plan

Gada sākums ikreiz saistīts ar paveicamā plānošanu kā profesionālajā jomā, tā privātajā dzīvē, kur nereti solām vairāk lasīt grāmatas, biežāk apciemot gados vecos radiniekus un noteikti pievērst milzīgu uzmanību savai veselībai. Abi pirmie punkti ir izpildāmi, atlicinot tam laiku, bet pievēršanās veselībai, veselīgam dzīvesveidam gan prasa uzņēmību, pacietību un arī zināšanas. Tiesa, ir daži konkrēti soļi, ko savas veselības un labsajūtas labā varam veikt uzreiz. Internās medicīnas ārste „Veselības centru apvienībā” (VCA), VCA „Aura” Dienas stacionāra vadītāja Inga Orleāne un “Mēness aptiekas” farmaceite Ērika Pētersone atgādina par veselībai nozīmīgu rīcību un vērtīgiem paradumiem, kuriem tad īpaša uzmanība būtu jāpievērš. 

“The pandemic has convincingly taught us that health and well-being should not be taken for granted,” says internist (general medicine) doctor Inga Orleāne. “However, too much focus on the ideal lifestyle is more likely to cause anxiety, feelings of inadequacy and guilt. Therefore, in January, when we reflect on everything we have committed to at the Christmas tree this year, it is worth taking a deep breath, drinking a cup of aromatic herbal tea and realizing the most important things that should be done right away for the sake of your health,” adds the doctors, pharmacist of “Mēnes Aptiekas” Erika Pētersone.

Check the vaccination passport

Immunization, or vaccination, has prevented countless cases of disease and disability, and thanks to it, millions of lives are saved every year. However, many still fall ill and live on disability, and there are families grieving the loss of loved ones from vaccine-preventable diseases. “It is important to be informed about all available vaccines, including viral infections – flu and Covid-19. The importance of these vaccines increases with the simultaneous threats of influenza, Covid-19 and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). Also consider pneumococcal vaccination and by all means encourage seniors in your family to do so in addition to the vaccines already mentioned. Annual vaccination should become a routine,” says Inga Orleāne.

Get screened for colon cancer

Colorectal (colon or rectal) cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related death in many countries of the world, including Latvia, and it seems that the number of cases of this cancer has no tendency to decrease. Now, the frequency of colorectal cancer is also increasing between the ages of 20 and 49. After the age of 50, screening is free. If your family doctor has not suggested it, ask for a screening kit yourself. Analyzing is easy. If you have a family history of colorectal cancer, tell your doctor – a colonoscopy may also be worth it.

Don’t put off breast cancer screening

Women should keep these rules in mind! Although there is no surefire way to prevent breast cancer, there are things you can do to reduce your risk. Regular screening is definitely a way to reduce the risk as much as possible by detecting the disease early.

Reduce screen time

During the pandemic, digital tools have been a real lifesaver – they have allowed people to work remotely, study from home and maintain personal connections virtually. It’s understandable that people are using their smart devices now more than ever. However, too much screen time can have a negative impact on health. A walk in the fresh air is a good way to get away from the screen! Plus, at a time when indoor spaces may not be safe due to viruses, it’s also a good opportunity to catch up with friends. But even if you’re going out alone, find a way to occupy yourself, like taking pictures. Also, remember to take a step, kick it wide, keep a straight back, move your arms and breathe rhythmically, thereby increasing the load and possibly lengthening the route every day.

Don’t be alone – find like-minded people

Although people are becoming more connected through social media and other forms of communication, many still feel lonely. Loneliness can have far-reaching effects on health and well-being. “Already during the Covid-19 pandemic, loneliness as a public health problem worsened, even leading to depressive states. If you feel like you’re withdrawing too much, start getting back into the community by getting involved in an interest group. It can be both a hobby and a charity group. Especially the last one is very important for improving the quality of life of individuals and the entire society, because by helping others, we help ourselves,” encourages pharmacist Ārika Pētersone of “Mēnes aptiekas”.

Old age is not far away – let’s grow old healthy

Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II has died aged 96 after a 70-year reign, vibrant and active right up to her last breath. We each deserve so many healthy years of life. This has a lot to do with healthy aging. “What’s the secret? You should not start paying attention to the aging process only in middle age, you should start thinking about it much earlier – right after leaving school. It is important to know today what we can influence and how to act in order to maintain physical and mental health until old age. All the above-mentioned points were precisely about the fact that we should be healthy, creative and able to work for many years to come!” reminds doctor Inga Orleāne.

Let’s keep the contents of the medicine cabinet in order

Make sure you have all the necessary medicines in your home medicine cabinet. The pharmacist says: “Even if you are young, for example, a seasonal viral infection can manifest itself. When you catch the flu, you still feel great in the morning, but by the afternoon you can’t get out of bed. The latest findings show that recovery and good rest can protect against unwanted consequences – the so-called “long” form of the disease. Therefore, in order not to have to run to the pharmacy again and again, ask your pharmacist what medicines you should have at home. A basic kit would be, for example, remedies for fever, runny nose,

diarrhea. Make sure you don’t need to renew your prescriptions if you have a chronic condition. In addition to the mandatory nutritional supplements – vitamin D, you should also buy a vitamin complex or at least vitamin C to be safe. If you really happen to get sick, it can help you recover,” said the pharmacist.

Review the daily menu

To feel energetic, start the morning with a good breakfast. Breakfast should be high in fiber and protein. Some studies have concluded that a full and balanced breakfast can reduce the risk of diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. Try to supplement the menu with vegetables and fruits, and plan as many different meals as possible that suit your lifestyle. Don’t forget the good omega-3, omega-6 and omega-9 fatty acids. If you really like various treats, reduce their use and look at what’s new on the store shelves in dried fruits and berries.

“These steps for health will not require a lot of time or investment, but if you have taken them, then it will be a good foundation on which to build your health and well-being, introducing many more activities in the fresh air into your daily life in the future,” says “Mēnes Aptiekas” wishing for health ” pharmacist Erika Pētersone.

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