It's never too early or too late to make healthy changes in your life for you to look and feel your best. You can take control of your health and help others in your family while you're at it. But remember, health isn't "one-size-fits-all." Everyone is unique, and everyone has their reasons for wanting to be healthy and has their set ways of going about it. It can be challenging to take the necessary steps for good health, but once you find what works best, you can build healthy habits — habits you'll be more likely to stick to for a healthier, happier you.
Get Your Recommended Screenings and Preventive Care
It's important to protect your health by getting the care you need to prevent disease, disability, and injuries. Regular check-ups are essential. Preventive care can keep disease away or detect problems early when treatment is more effective. Talk to your primary care provider to learn more about what screenings and exams you need and when. Learn what you can do before your next appointment, like review your family health history and write down any questions or issues you may have.
Here are ten health screenings every woman needs:
1. Breast Cancer Screening
2. Cervical Cancer Screening
3. Cholesterol Screening
4. Colorectal Cancer Screening
5. Diabetes Risk Assessment
6. HIV Screening
7. Hypertension Screening
8. Lung Cancer Screening
9. Osteoporosis Screening
10. Sexually Transmitted Disease Screening
Follow this chart to learn when to get your next exam or test. With COVID-19 in mind, ImageCare Medical Imaging is actively phasing back into its current schedule of all imaging modalities that were previously postponed. We have additional safety and cleaning precautions in place, and we are confident we can expand our capabilities at ImageCare while keeping our patients safe, according to CDC and ACR guidelines. Learn more about what we are doing to ensure safety at ImageCare and what services are available. If you would like more information or to schedule an appointment, contact ImageCare Medical Imaging.
Get out and about and enjoy the spring weather! Physical activity is one of the most important things you can do for your health and has many benefits, including lowering your risk for heart disease—the leading cause of death for women. Adults should do at least 2 hours and 30 minutes each week of aerobic physical activity that requires moderate effort. You don't have to do it all at once. Even a few minutes at a time has health benefits, and some activity is always better than none. Moreover, adults should do strengthening activities at least two days a week that include all major muscle groups.
Enjoy a Healthy and Balanced Diet
Nutrition is an essential part of a healthy lifestyle. Learn the basics and move toward a lifestyle of healthier eating habits. A healthy eating plan includes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, fat-free and low-fat milk and other dairy products, lean meats, and is low in salt, saturated and trans fats, and added sugars.
Women need folic acid, or Vitamin B, every day for the healthy new cells the body makes. Folic acid is vital to help prevent significant congenital disabilities when pregnant—women who could become pregnant need 400 micrograms (400 mcg) of folic acid each day. Two easy ways you can get enough folic acid are to take a daily vitamin that has folic acid in it or eat a bowl of breakfast cereal that has 100% of the daily value of folic acid every day.
Avoid drinking too much alcohol. Excessive alcohol use has immediate effects that increase the risk of many harmful health conditions and can lead to the development of chronic diseases. If you choose to drink, do so in moderation, which is up to 1 drink a day for women.
Prioritize Your Mental Health
According to the CDC, about one out of ten women in the United States experience symptoms of depression. Keep your mind and body healthy. Research shows that positive mental health is associated with improved health. Everyone experiences stress at times. It's important for you to find healthy ways to cope with that stress.
Practice Healthy Behaviors
Your daily decisions influence your overall health. Small actions can help keep you safe and healthy and set a good example for others. For instance, staying up to date on cancer screening tests and protecting your skin from the sun when outdoors is essential. Moreover, getting enough sleep is necessary for your health. It impacts how you feel and how you perform during the day. Next, be sure to avoid distracted driving, such as texting, talking on a cellphone, eating, or using a GPS. Distracted driving causes injuries, and even deaths, that can be prevented. If you are prescribed any medication, only take what is directed by your primary care provider. Lastly, be smoke-free! Smoking harms nearly every organ of the body and can affect your overall health. If you are ready to quit, call 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669) or visit Smokefree Women for free resources, including coaching, a step-by-step plan, educational materials, and referrals to other resources based on where you live.
Now, ask yourself, "Where am I on my health journey?" and "Where do I want to go?" Every woman has her approach to bettering their health, and we know that it's not always easy to take the necessary steps for a healthier lifestyle. This National Women's Health Week, we want to help you find what works best for you.