Among the main rules or advice that would have to be considered to maintain better health for many years we can point out the following:
- Adequate medical assistance: Physical illnesses are the main factors that leads to debilitation of the body. You need to visit the doctor when you are sick to attend the most appropriate medication and prevent any disease from harming the body, even slightly. You need a proper medicine to prevent or treat diseases. An advanced diagnostics can help stop or cure a disease in its early stages.
It has been shown in animals that, by reducing the intake of calories, they live longer. Eating sparingly appears to be one of the best resources to prevent the occurrence of many diseases. Studies in vegetarians taking a low-calorie diet have shown that they tend to live longer.
No one knows exactly why this occurs but it appears that a lower intake of calories leads to a reduced production of antioxidants and may slow basal metabolism lengthening life expectancy . Moreover, as we know, excess calories leads to obesity which is one of the main reason for many diseases to take place.
Do not confuse a moderate diet with an inadequate diet. The extreme thinness exhausts the body and shortens life expectancy.
- Drink plenty of fluids: The sensation of thirst diminishes with increasing age, when fluid absorption is more necessary than ever. Fluids help the body release toxins through the skin, faeces and urine.
Body liquids contribute to increase the hydration of the skin, and help to maintain a healthy and beautiful skin, with less dryness or wrinkles. A good fluid intake is necessary for the digestion and absorption of nutrients. Blood needs a suitable volume for delivering nutrients and oxygen to cells. It is important throughout life to provide your body the right water intake.
We would have to drink a minimum of 1.5 liters of water per day and old people should make an extra effort to drink a pair of liters a day. In addition to water, we can drink fruit juices and herbal teas or vegetable juices.
- Avoid tobacco: Tobacco addiction is one of the main causes of the degeneration of the body. Tobacco is the first cause of respiratory disease from lung cancer to chronic pulmonary obstruction, emphysema, bronchitis, asthma, cancers of pharynx and larynx, etc. Tobacco is responsible for many cases of heart attacks, which usually is known as angina. Heart attacks are more common in smokers. The habit of smoking is one of the leading causes of circulatory system diseases such as arteriosclerosis, hypertension, heart failure, etc. It is also responsible for many diseases of the digestive apparatus, such as ulcers, gastritis or heartburn. Cancer of the esophagus or mouth is more common among people who smoke.
- Avoid alcohol: Alcohol is a drug which abuse is responsible for wide damage in the body. The liver is one of the organs more affected by the constant alcohol consumption, since it is in charge of cleaning the toxins. By attacking the gastrointestinal mucosa, alcohol stimulates acid production, son it can cause major disorders such as heartburn, vomits and, sometimes, bleeding ulcers. (See the consequences of excessive alcohol consumption)
- Avoid stress: Stress is counter-productive to many organs of our body. When the body is stressed, our heart needs to pump more blood. Our stomach becomes more acidic, so more ulcers or gastritis can take place. The nervous system is stimulated too. Avoiding situations of anxiety or stress is a good way for the body to suffer less.
- Physical exercise: Physical exercise produces hormones that increase happiness and decrease stress. Exercise is necessary for the proper maintenance of muscles and joints. Moderate physical activity and appropriate to the abilities of each person is very important to stimulate the defenses that protect us from many diseases. The best ally of the heart and arteries is physical activity. Among the most recommended is walking at a brisk pace for a period of 30 to 60 minutes each day. Other interesting physical activities are cycling, stair climbing or swimming.
- Sleep well: Sleeping is needed to repair the body. Sleeping for 7 or eight hours is necessary for the body to function properly. While we sleep, our body repairs itself mentally as well as physically, freeing itself from many worries and tensions accumulated throughout the day. Sleeping is stress-liberating. After lunch a short nap is very convenient and do not forget to take a pause from time to time to clear your mind and relax your body.
- Free yourself of tensions: It is important to release the tensions that constrain our arteries, undermine our nervous system and can cause severe damage to some of our body organs. It is very important to undertake some kind of hobby or distraction to release this tension. We must not miss some techniques that can be very helpful for this purpose, such as massage, tai chi, breathing exercises, yoga, etc.
- Take a positive attitude towards life: Being free of pessimism helps maintain good health. Depressive moods decrease defenses and make the body more vulnerable to internal and external attacks. Laughter therapy is a good resource to increase defenses and prevent many degenerative diseases, including cancer. It has been proven that kind, smiling, optimist people may have fewer illnesses. They usually live, if not longer , at least with a better health.
One of the ways to maintain a more positive spirit is to look for a purpose, a goal in life. People who have more dreams for the future are happier and tend to enjoy better health.
Many people over 70 years of age maintain more active lifestyles that some over 50. According to studies, heredity only determines aging at 15 or 20%, while the remaining 75 or 80% depends on the kind of life we live and our attitude towards life. A more positive attitude towards life and a better care for one's body will determine the level of health when we are older.