VA North Texas Health Care System
Follow These Nine Tips to Enjoy Healthy Living
1. Get recommended screening tests and immunizations. Ask what screening tests and immunizations are best for you. It can help you live healthy.
2. Be involved in your health care. You know your body better than anyone. Work with your health care team to improve your health by:
- Keeping appointments
- Writing down questions in advance
- Stating your current health problems and concerns
- Participating in decisions about your health care and treatments
3. Be safe. Find out how to prevent sexually transmitted diseases, limit alcohol and prevent motor vehicle accidents.
4. Strive for a healthy weight. Losing even a little will help. If you are of normal weight, maintain it. Staying in control of your weight helps you be healthy now and in the future.
5. Be tobacco free. Quit smoking. Pick a date to stop and let our smoking cessation team help you.
6. Manage stress. Here are some ways to help manage stress
- Physical Activity—Take a brisk walk or engage in other physically demanding activities.
- Problem Solving—Learn problem solving skills as this can often improve your ability to cope.
- Relaxation Training—Learn relaxation and mindfulness skills to assist you to manage the arousal that is associated with stress.
- Expression—Speak up in respectful ways. Sharing thoughts and feelings in an assertive and respectful manner can sometimes help buffer stress.
- Time Management—List what needs to get done, make plans for addressing issues and stick to the plan.
- Positive Thinking—Focus your attention on positive thoughts about yourself, favorite songs, poems, favorite prayers or hobbies.
- Pleasant Activities—Make time for fun in your life. Plan to have regular, enjoyable activities and see if this buffers your stress.
If you are a Veteran or know one who is in an emotional crisis, please call the Veterans Crisis Line to talk to someone immediately. 1-800-273-8255 Press 1
7. Be physically active. Avoid inactivity. Some activity is better than none. Aim for at least two and a half hours of moderate-intensity aerobic activity each week. Every 10 minute session counts. Do strengthening activities at least two days each week.
8. Eat wisely. Eat wisely to maximize your health. Eat a variety of foods including vegetables, fruits and whole grains. It is important to include fat-free or low-fat milk and milk products in your diet and to limit salt, fat, sugar and alcohol.
9. Limit alcohol. If you choose to drink alcohol, do so in moderation. Women should not drink more than one drink a day; men should not drink more than two drinks a day). Avoid binge drinking. If you are concerned about your drinking, talk to your VA health care team about getting help.