Taking Care of Yourself

Americans aren’t the healthiest bunch. We’re generally overweight, sick, anxious, and depressed. The most upsetting thing about this sad state of affairs is that,...
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Americans aren’t the healthiest bunch. We’re generally overweight, sick, anxious, and depressed. The most upsetting thing about this sad state of affairs is that, in many cases, these things are preventable. If only we took better care of ourselves!

You have the chance to achieve a healthy and happy life, but your future depends on you. Here’s how to take care of your health every single day of the year.

Lifelong Care Commitments

Doctors can save your life. They can cure illnesses, heal broken bones, and help you correct unhealthy habits. But you shouldn’t wait until you have an emergency to see the doctor. Make sure that you’re committing to regular care.

For adults, a visit to a primary care physician should happen at least once per year. If your doctor says to come more often, do so. Address any special medical needs with specialists—your primary care physician can refer you to them if need be—and don’t neglect your mental health, either. Pay a visit to a psychiatrist or psychologist to talk about your mental health, and treat any issues as seriously as you would treat physical illness or injury.

Staying Covered

Medical care isn’t free. In fact, it can be very expensive—so expensive that many of us would be unable to pay for it without health insurance. That’s why it is absolutely vital that you secure health insurance coverage and maintain it at all times.

Without proper health insurance coverage, you could lose access to the regular preventative care that you need in order to stay healthy. If you end up needing emergency care, you’ll have no insurance to help pay for it, and could end up in terrible debt. Make absolutely sure that you have health insurance, and secure short term medical insurance for gap periods between policies. Do not spend a single day without health insurance!

Everyday Decisions

Staying healthy isn’t just about visiting the doctor. You can’t foist all of your responsibility for your own health off onto a medical professional. Your overall physical and mental health will rely heavily on the decisions that you make every day.

Commit to eating right. Nutrition may seem complicated, but experts have some shortcuts to offer. If you eat a plant-based diet of whole foods, you’ll be all but certain to get the nutrients that you need and to maintain a healthy weight. Cutting out processed foods as much as possible will banish empty calories from your diet. If you want to take things to the next level, you could consider tracking macronutrients in your diet.

Exercise is vital, too. Regular exercise will keep you strong and can contribute to the maintenance of a healthy weight (though it’s important to remember that “outrunning” a poor diet with exercise is all but impossible—nutrition and exercise need to go hand-in-hand). Exercise is also good for your mental health.

Supplements and medications can be a part of your everyday health plan, too. Be sure to take prescription medications properly and per your doctors’ orders. Consider adding important supplements into your diet, too: Multivitamins, fish oil, probiotics, and other supplements can be very helpful. CBD is another strong choice: It’s believed to help with all sorts of physical and mental ailments and symptoms, particularly anxiety disorders. Though CBD is derived from cannabis, it is non-psychoactive. CBD is easy and legal to acquire and can be ingested in all kinds of forms—there is even CBD vape oil. Just be sure to talk to your doctor about every supplement you take.

Sam Fisher joined Urban Tulsa as a contributing writer, before taking on the associate editor role. He graduated is a Boston University graduate and resides in Austin, Texas.