Our lifestyle choices determine how well our body can handle any health complications life can throw at us. Our general practice guidelines create a framework for you to build upon and tailor for your best self! Here at Alden Medical Group, we aim to provide you with tools and a “big picture” perspective, to enable your whole body to work together for better health.
There are many simple ways to begin directing yourself down a “Whole-Body Wellness” path. Read on to learn about activities we recommend beginning to incorporate or making a plan to stop, in your goal of weight loss, more energy, less pain or complications, all of the above – whatever it may be!
As a general rule of thumb, our practice recommends a sensible, whole-food approach, including lots of vegetables! Please visit our Nutrition Resource Page for Dietitian information and many helpful resources on food and how your diet can positively affect your health, no matter your situation! “Adding Color” is one great way to visualize a change for the better; encouraging you to look for all the different colors of vegetables that you can start adding to your plate with each meal! Eating more vegetables is a very effective way to quickly increase the nutrient density of your diet, benefiting your health in so many positive ways.
Our Physical Activity Guidelines page can help you to find ways to safely increase your movement, and potentially add in more activity over time to improve your health and reduce your risks even more. For example, for most people, walking is an easy and low-impact way to move more and benefit all areas of your health; 30-45 minutes on most days will help to regulate your hormones and mood, balancing your system and keeping your muscles loose. As always, please discuss any changes in your fitness plan before you incorporate them!
Constant stress in your body and mind can cause a myriad of complications or even put you at much higher risk for many serious diagnoses over time! Learn about the varied ways you can actively manage your stress level on our Stress Reduction recommendation page. Yoga, meditation and walking are just some of the great ways you can learn to relieve your anxiety and stress. Talk with your doctor at your next appointment, but we recommend practicing as many of these options as often as your lifestyle can allow. Stress-Free Tip: Check with your health insurance plan to inquire whether some of these activities might be covered under a wellness option!
Sleep is when our bodies recharge, heal and buffer for everyday stress. So much of our health depends on getting high-quality, restorative sleep! We recommend making it a priority to get 7-8 hours of restful, uninterrupted sleep most nights. You will be amazed at how much your health will be impacted depending on your quality and longevity of sleep! If you currently have a diagnosis or health challenge that makes it difficult to achieve this, we encourage you to discuss what changes you can make that might help you with your doctor AND dietitian (Yes! The kind of food you eat has an impact on your sleep as well!).
Maintaining a Healthy Weight
A healthy weight is different for everyone, and it’s not always just about the number on the scale! A healthy weight is a balanced distribution for your body, nourishing yourself with whole foods and beverages and incorporating daily movement. A healthy, balanced weight is a major key to managing complications and risks, enabling your body to stay strong and run as efficiently as possible, with less stress on mind and body! If you are looking to reduce body weight, please visit our Weight Loss/Obesity page for ways to start your journey or add to what you’re already doing to increase your effectiveness. Ask your Doctor or Dietitian at your next appointment what the best approach might be for your unique situation! Read this “Make It Happen” Weight Loss Guide from ACP to help give you sensible tips to slowly incorporate for weight loss that will be slow and steady, but stick!
You may have heard the typical recommendation of drinking 8-10 eight oz glasses of filtered water per day… and it’s well-known advice for a reason! Water boosts your immune system response, can help you digest your food, get better sleep and according to the CDC, water can “keep your temperature normal, lubricate and cushion joints, protect your spinal cord and other sensitive tissues and [flush out toxins]/get rid of wastes through urination, perspiration, and bowel movements.” Once your body adjusts to the extra fluid, you’ll notice your natural thirst return, and all of the benefits your new habit may bring (more energy, more hydrated skin, less inflammation, reduced consumption of less healthy beverage choices!). For a(n almost) free beverage, water can have an incredible, positive affect on your health! Easy Extra Water Tip: Bone broth, broth-based soups and foods with higher water content such as celery, tomatoes or melon can contribute to your daily goal!
As always, please discuss with your Doctor to see if your specific diagnoses could change this recommendation.
Eliminating/Limiting Excess Consumption or Exposure
Red Meat, Caffeine, Nicotine, Alcohol, Sugar, Sunlight, Chemicals in the Workplace. (More detailed information coming soon, since in specific situations, some may have benefits in small quantities)
First and Foremost, we recommend visiting us once a year for an Annual Physical (with potential routine bloodwork to monitor changes). At this appointment, we can check your health to determine what might have changed, identify any new or potential problems, and assess your current health state, to determine if your care plan is still effective. Aside from this very important visit, as a general rule, we recommend annual visits for everyone to your Dentist, Eye Doctor and OB/GYN, making sure to schedule an annual Mammogram if you are over 40. We can recommend providers in these areas if you do not currently have one you trust!
Every diagnosis comes with a set of specific complications that we encourage you to manage effectively, sometimes as preventative care with a referred specialist. We do have certain Specialty Physicians we work with that you can visit at their own offices, but also coordinate time for them to be here in our office on specified days for your convenience.
American College of Physicians Preventative Care Resource Center (for an exhaustive link list to preventative care needs for many specific diagnoses)