“It’s the little things.” You’ve heard that phrase tossed around. We’re told to appreciate the little things that come our way: an unexpected compliment; someone holding the door open for you; the way a loving child might reach up and stroke your hair.
When it comes to your health, it turns out that the little things can add up to a lot. The American Heart Association says that there are 7 little changes you can make to reduce your risk of disease and live a longer, healthier life. What’s more, a brand new study from our neighbors to the south at Ohio State University shows that people who make these changes greatly lower their risk of developing a disease that we know is extremely threatening to our feet: diabetes.
What are the 7 small changes?
February is American Heart Month, so we at Foot & Ankle Associates of Cleveland think it’s a great time to focus on the American Heart Association’s concept of “Life’s Simple 7” lifestyle changes. They are
- Maintain healthy blood pressure
- Maintain healthy blood sugar levels
- Maintain healthy cholesterol levels
- Eat a healthy diet
- Exercise a minimum of 150 minutes each week
- Stop smoking
- Maintain a healthy weight
Don’t try to tackle them all at once
Feel overwhelmed by all this change? Well, the researchers at Ohio State found that following even a few of these 7 lifestyle changes can make a difference. Pick one today and make it your goal for a month. For example, take #6. If you smoke, set a goal for reducing the number of cigarettes you’ll smoke this month. Then smoke fewer cigarettes today. Seek out a support group tomorrow.
The following month, you could begin to address #5. The first week, walk more: park far away from the store entrance; take the stairs at work. The second week, pick up a couple of exercise DVDs or explore all the instructional videos at your disposal online.
It’s the little things. Over time, they can lead to big improvements in your overall health. Pain or discomfort in your feet or ankles could prevent you from reaching your new health goals. If so, make an appointment with our expert podiatrists, Dr. Megan L. Oltmann and Dr. Craig B. Frey. We provide individualized care and treatment, always taking your lifestyle into consideration. Call us in beautiful Solon, Ohio at (440) 903-1041 or contact us online.