We all know that if we want to become and remain healthy, we are the ones who have to make a change. This is evidenced by the fact that more than half of the country is overweight, 100 million Americans have diabetes or prediabetes, and heart disease is the leading cause of death. Preventing and reversing these conditions will almost always come down to your decision to exercise and eat a healthier diet.
It is clear that a lack of exercise and nutrition is the cause of the majority of health problems present in America today. In fact, the CDC (Center for Disease Control) estimates that more than 80% of diabetes and heart disease and 40% of cancer could be prevented if people exercised, ate a healthy diet, and didn’t smoke cigarettes. However, although exercise and diet may be the closest thing to a cure, most of us still don’t do it.
Fitness and nutrition is very complicated and changing our habits into healthier ones can be extremely challenging. For example, if you’re unfamiliar with exercise, then joining a gym may be intimidating if you don’t know much about how to use the equipment or feel self-conscious. Nutrition is particularly complex because of the overabundance of information available online and the fact that much of that information is conflicting. Still, there is no excuse for us in America to live with poor health. We have a plethora of resources and information and it is up to us to use it to live healthier and better lives.
If you’re ready to start taking control over your health, one of the first steps you can do is to join a gym. By joining a gym, you now have access to a place where you can get your recommended weekly 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity and strength training. The next step you can take is to start implementing small changes in your diet. For example, you may choose to remove or replace one unhealthy food with a healthier alternative every other week. Over time, these small changes will amount to a big and lasting change in your overall health and lifestyle. If you’re like most people and find this difficult to do all on your own, you may find that partnering up with a knowledgeable and compassionate fitness and/or nutrition coach can greatly improve your odds of long-term success.
Regardless of how you go about it, fitness and nutrition are two of the most important things you can ever do for your health. Because much like everything else worth having in this life, health is rarely something that can be given to us - it must almost always be earned.
For more information on fitness and nutrition guidelines you can go to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services online.