Spring awakens all of us to new growth, new possibilities, new ways of eating smarter and exercising more. People in Milton Keynes can now benefit from top tips from NHS Milton Keynes Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) to help them spring into action and give their health a seasonal boost.
- With the better weather and the lighter nights, consider the benefits of walking. Walking in a group is a great way to start walking, make new friends and stay motivated. The positives of walking are that it’s one of the easiest forms of exercise you can do, and it’s free! Regular walking has been shown to reduce the risk of chronic illnesses, such as heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, asthma, stroke and some cancers. The best way to get into walking, like anything, is begin slowly and increase your daily steps. Most of us walk between 3,000 and 4,000 steps a day on arrange, so why not set yourself a challenge of 10,000?
- Giving up smoking is the single best way to improve your health this spring, but many smokers find it difficult to do alone. Free help and advice on quitting smoking is available by calling the Smokefree National Helpline on 0300 123 1044.
- Drinking more than the recommended units – 14 a week for both men and women – is linked to many cancers. The immediate effects of reducing your alcohol intake includes feeling better in the mornings, being less tired during the day, losing weight and your skin may start to look better.
- Cut down on junk food, like sweets, crisps and chocolate, and replace them with healthier foods like fruit, vegetables and yoghurt. Drinking more water also helps to improve our general health.
- Taking up a sport or joining a gym offer great opportunities to get fit, but there are also loads of fun and easy ways you can get more active for free. Becoming physically active is easier than you think, especially if you make activity part of your daily routine. It’s a good idea to involve a friend, neighbour, work colleague, relative or ‘activity buddy’ in your activity routine. You can support each other and you will have company while you’re doing your activity too.
There are plenty of challenges to get you moving this Spring, such as Change for Life http://www.nhs.uk/Change4Life/Pages/walk-for-life.aspx which has plenty of advice and tips to get you and your family active. Couch to 5K has been designed to get you off the couch and running in just 9 weeks; follow the step-by-step instructions in this free app: http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/loseweight/Pages/10000stepschallenge.aspx .
Dr Nicola Smith, Local GP and Chair of NHS Milton Keynes CCG, said:
“Spring cleaning our homes at this time of year can often be very satisfying but there are even greater benefits if we give our health a thorough makeover.
“Spring is the time for new beginnings of every sort because when the seasons shift, so can we. The daffodils are in bloom – and so we should be. This is the time to spring clean your health, the time to get active and sprout new fitness habits. So, spring into action and start benefiting from a healthier lifestyle today.”