Due to the global life expectancy reaching a record of 71.4 years, the healthcare system is facing immense pressure to deal with an aging population’s many health problems. In some cases, many serious medical conditions are avoidable with healthier lifestyle choices or an early diagnosis.
If you want to ensure you live to a long age, you must have a proactive approach to your health. To do so, read about the below four major health challenges in the world today and how you can help combat them through an improved lifestyle.
- Heart Disease and Stroke
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 15 million people lost their lives due to ischemic heart disease or a stroke in 2015 alone. Additional cardiovascular diseases are also causing the deaths of 31% of the world’s population. These are incredibly high figures.
If you want to ensure you do not add to the shocking statistic, you must review your diet and think twice about what you ingest. Prevent cardiovascular disease or a stroke by reducing your consumption of salt, alcohol, and tobacco. You should also enjoy regular physical activity at least three times a week, which can be met by heading to the gym, joining a sports team or running with a friend. Furthermore, ensure you add more fruit and vegetables onto your plate, and reduce your meat consumption and stop eating overly fatty foods altogether. These are all examples of how you can make small easy changes to your lifestyle that will potentially go a long way in positively affecting your overall health and wellbeing.
Diabetes is a chronic condition caused by unusually high blood glucose levels. Unfortunately, it can lead to various chronic and acute medical conditions, such as cognitive impairment, glaucoma, congestive heart failure, peripheral neuropathy, and more.
Diabetes is, however, placed into two categories: type 1 and type 2. Treatment for type 1 includes insulin, while type 2 will require patients to take medication such as metformin or repaglinide. You can also manage or prevent diabetes with lifestyle modifications, including enjoying regular exercise and consuming fiber rich whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, while reducing your intake of high-fat such as whole milk, fried foods and cheeses. People with type 2 diabetes should also move more each day, lessen their stress and also track their progress.
- Drug or Alcohol Addiction
Shockingly, 51.8% of the US population who are aged 12 or older reportedly drink alcohol. 8.9% of the population over the age of 12 also meet the criteria for either a drug or alcohol use disorder. This roughly equates to 22.1 million people in America; startling figures, to say the least.
Living with an addiction cannot only take its toll on a person’s mental or physical health, but it can impact almost every aspect of their life, such as their relationships, career, and finances. That’s why it’s so crucial to seek help if you are currently living with an addiction. Take the first step towards recovery by learning more about an effective drug rehab center. If it is a friend or family member, be sure to tackle the subject with caution. You should not overwhelm them, and sometimes bringing in a professional who can help with an intervention can help show the person living with an addiction the road to recovery more clearly. Sharing the problem is the first step, and through opening up and sharing the issues they are facing, whoever is going through the problem will immediately find it easier to seek help. Take each step at a time as it will most likely be a long road to recovery, but through support and professional help, even those really struggling can find a way through.
- Kidney Disease
Renal failure continues to be one of the biggest medical concerns across the globe. It’s believed more than two million people die prematurely each year due to a lack of kidney failure treatment. The cause of acute kidney failure can vary from blood loss and shock to infections and dehydration. If a kidney cannot function for three months, this can lead to a diagnosis of chronic kidney disease.
To prevent kidney disease, decrease your protein and salt intake (no more than 6g a day), regularly drink fluids (cut down your alcohol intake), maintain a healthy body weight, and quit smoking. A healthy diet includes plenty of fruit and vegetables, starchy meals such as potatoes, rice or pasta, and low levels of saturated fat. Furthermore, if you have underlying conditions such as diabetes or high blood pressure, you need to manage these carefully. It’s also important to speak with a doctor about the possibility of kidney failure if you are living with hypertension.