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If you are looking for the best ways to stay healthy, give yourself a pat on the back. Some people look at the illnesses in their family and believe that it is all genetic. Others rely entirely on doctors and the mainstream medical community to "cure" their ailments. More and more research indicates that we can and should take matters into our own hands. Although Ben Franklin famous "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure" was actually written about preventing house fires, which were a common threat in Philadelphia, the advice has often been used in healthcare. You might want to know why. The reason is that many of the diseases that had for years been thought of as "age-related" may actually be preventable. The role played by family history may have less to do with genes and more to do with unhealthy dietary habits or lifestyle factors passed down from one generation to the next. When it comes to viral infections, such as the common cold and the seasonal flu, prevention is again more effective than any cures that we have. Food poisoning is also preventable, with the proper precautions. So, here is a short list of some of the ways to stay healthy. · Wash your hands before meals and after using the restroom. During cold and flu season, avoid touching your mouth, nose or face until after you wash your hands. · Do not rely on antibacterial soaps, because they are not effective against viruses. Washing with warm water and regular soap is actually more effective. · Follow the safe handling instructions when preparing foods. · Be physically active. · Meditate regularly or use other approaches, such as prayer, to relax and reduce stress. · Sleep well. · Maintain a healthy weight. Of all of the ways to stay healthy, keeping your weight under control may be the most important. People that are slightly overweight have a higher survival rate from diseases like cancer, because of the weight loss it causes. But, people that are greatly overweight or obese are more likely to develop cancer and other debilitating illnesses.

There are very small groups that claim obesity is not unhealthy. But, the research proves them wrong, again and again. Maintaining a reasonable weight is one of the best ways to stay healthy, because it is known that people with mild to moderate obesity (defined as having a BMI greater than 30) are more likely to suffer from: · Heart disease · Type II diabetes · Sleep disorders · Cancer · Osteoarthritis · Osteoporosis · Fallen arches and flat feet It's a shame that anyone has to suffer the health problems associated with being overweight or obese. In many cases, the only thing necessary to lose weight and improve their health is to learn how, when and what to eat. There may be many things that you personally need to learn about. The subject is large. But, if you practice the ways to stay healthy listed above, you should find that you start to feel better and look better, too.

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Ways to Stay Healthy