A New Year, A New Start.

25 Nov 2014 Chris James   Health and wellbeing Medicines and treatments

Time to Quit.

Smoking is a major health risk, not just for the smoker but also for family and friends who breathe in the smoke, especially children. Giving up smoking can boost one's confidence as it gives healthy skin and no tobacco stains on fingers and teeth. You may also find that you can taste your food more. Smoking 20 cigarettes a day can cost more than £2,000 per year so the financial benefits of quitting are also worth considering. Stopping smoking is one of the toughest things someone can do so if you plan to quit make sure friends and family are aware so that they can support and encourage you. You should also visit local pharmacy where you can get support and helpful advice on the range of products designed to help you achieve your goal. There are several types of Nicotine Replacement products currently on the market: Patches, Chewing Gum, Inhalators, Lozenges, Microtabs, Nasal Sprays, & Oral Pumps so take your pharmacist's advice on which one is best suited for you.

Battle of the Bulge

Obesity is on the increase and nearly a quarter of adults are classified as obese. Being overweight increases our risk of health problems especially diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and stroke. The simplest way to lose weight is to take in fewer calories than the body requires. If you are planning on losing some of those surplus pounds the trick is to aim for a slow and gradual reduction. Set yourself sensible, achievable targets. Gradual weight loss is more sustainable and you are more likely to maintain this weight loss in the long term.

Aim to make adjustments to your diet and lifestyle. Eat healthy by cutting down on fats, reduce your portions, don't snack between meals, reduce your alcohol intake, and cut down on takeaways and fizzy drinks. Get your 5 portions of fruit and veg every day. Try to get more exercise into your life. Getting more exercise does not necessarily mean putting on trainers and running a marathon. The amount and type of exercise depends on your age and physical ability. Doing something is better than not doing anything at all. Where possible, walk rather than take the car, take the stairs instead of the lift or escalator. Swimming is an excellent exercise or for those more energetic you may want to join your local gym. If you feel up to it consider taking up a new sport such as tennis. If this all sounds too much there is plenty to be gained from a brisk walk in the fresh air.

And remember to ask your pharmacist for advice and make the most of your pharmacy.

Wishing everyone a healthy and Happy New Year.

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