• The Top 10 Threats To Our Health

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    (BlackDoctor.org)

    Prevention is the key to living a healthier, happier life. Numerous threats to women’s health can be avoided by making a few simple lifestyle adjustments. Consider this top 10 list of women’s health concerns, compiled from statistics provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other organizations. Then take steps to promote optimal health and reduce your risks today.

    No. 1 — Heart Disease

    Heart disease isn’t just a man’s illness. To prevent heart disease:

    • Don’t smoke or use other tobacco products. Avoid exposure to secondhand smoke.

    • Eat a healthy diet rich in vegetables, fruits, whole grains, fiber and fish. Cut back on foods high in saturated fat and sodium.

    • If you have high cholesterol or high blood pressure, follow your doctor’s treatment recommendations.

    • Include physical activity in your daily routine and maintain a healthy weight.

    • If you choose to drink alcohol, do so only in moderation. Too much alcohol can raise blood pressure.

    • If you have diabetes, keep your blood sugar under control.

    • Manage stress.

    No. 2 — Cancer

    The most common cause of cancer deaths among women is lung cancer, according to the American Cancer Society. Breast cancer and colorectal cancer also pose a major threat to women. To reduce your risk of cancer, reread the above bullets and consider the following:

    • Consult your doctor for regular cancer screenings.

    • Reduce exposure to cancer-causing substances (carcinogens), such as radon, asbestos, radiation and air pollution.

    • Breast-feed if you can.

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    No. 3 — Stroke

    You can’t control some stroke risk factors, such as age, family history, sex or race. But you can take these steps to reduce your risk of stroke:

    • Don’t smoke.

    • If you have high cholesterol or high blood pressure, follow your doctor’s treatment recommendations.

    • Limit the amount of saturated fat and cholesterol in your diet. Try to avoid trans fat entirely.

    • Maintain a healthy weight and include physical activity in your daily routine.

    • If you have diabetes, keep your blood sugar under control.

    • If you choose to drink alcohol, do so only in moderation.

    No. 4 — COPD

    Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a group of chronic lung conditions, including bronchitis and emphysema. To prevent COPD:

    • Don’t smoke. Avoid exposure to secondhand smoke.

    • Minimize exposure to chemicals and air pollution.

    No. 5 — Alzheimer’s Disease

    There’s no proven way to prevent Alzheimer’s disease, but consider taking these steps:

    • Take care of your heart. High blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, diabetes and high cholesterol may increase the risk of developing Alzheimer’s.

    • Avoid head injuries. There appears to be a link between head injury and future risk of Alzheimer’s.

    • Maintain a healthy weight and include physical activity in your daily routine.

    • Avoid tobacco.

    • If you choose to drink alcohol, do so only in moderation.

    • Stay socially active.

    • Maintain mental fitness. Practice mental exercises, and take steps to learn new things.

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