How young adults can take charge of their health

Many teenagers are excited about becoming young adults. Thoughts of landing a great job, earning money, making independent decisions, living on your own, and being free to do as you please seem such a thrill. 

Fast forward to your 20s, and you realize that being an adult is not just about relishing the freedom and having fun, but much more. With a lot of things going on in your life, responsibility suddenly seems like a big word. Apart from establishing a work-life balance, budgeting your money, and building personal relationships, there’s healthcare and self-care. While many young adults (approximately 18-26 years old) tend to give health a low priority, taking care of your physical and mental well-being are significant parts of adulting. Here’s a simple guide to help young adults like you take charge of your health.

1. Establish a good diet for a healthy you

Eating healthy food is a good place to start taking charge of your health. By consuming healthy food and drinks, you can provide your body with the proper nutrients it needs. Young adults can benefit from eating different fruits, vegetables, protein, low-fat dairy or fortified soy alternatives, and whole grains. Choose also food rich in calcium like yogurt, milk, and cheese. Limit intake of food with added sugar, sodium, and saturated fat. 

For busy young adults, avoid eating too many fast food dishes, which are often high in calories, fat, and sugar but low in nutrients and fiber. For kdrama addicts, take it easy on instant noodles and soju.

2. Maintain a healthy weight

Aside from eating a balanced diet, controlling your food portions can help you maintain a healthy weight. Some people tend to eat larger portions than what their body needs, especially when eating out. For instance, eating at an “all-you-can-eat buffet” can urge excessive eating. There are also many non-buffet restaurants that serve large portions of both food and beverages. When you’re not at home, be mindful of your choice of dining places and the amount you eat. 

Avoid going on a crash diet and skipping meals to lose weight. They might seem like an easy way to shed those extra pounds but these are not sustainable weight loss solutions. Chances are, it can lead to weight gain if you eat more to make up for a missed meal or to satisfy a craving. 

Physical activity also plays a big factor in maintaining a healthy weight. Vigorous exercise (e.g. brisk walking, jogging, biking, etc.) at least three times a week can help you stay fit and healthy.

3. Say no to ‘puyat’

A survey conducted by Sleep Cycle revealed that Pinoy adults sleep an average of six hours and 30 minutes a day. This falls short of CDC’s recommended seven to nine hours of sleep a day to promote optimal health and well-being. 

Sleep deprivation due to working overtime, partying, binge-watching, etc. can lead to various health risks including obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. 

Getting proper sleep is important if you want to take charge of your health. It’s okay to take a break and have fun but the YOLO (You Only Live Once) mentality should not be used as an excuse to abuse your body.

4. Let positive vibes rule

Your emotional wellness is just as important as your physical health. Take better care of your mental health by practicing simple self-care activities like those mentioned in this article. In addition, you can engage in regular activities that can calm your senses and help you de-stress. The activity may depend on your personality and personal preferences but a few examples to consider are journaling, engaging in arts and crafts, reading, gardening, playing sports, doing yoga exercises, connecting with other people, or starting a new hobby. These activities nurture positive vibes and can help you develop the resilience to cope with stressors.

5. Invest in the right health card

With the outbreak of COVID-19 in 2020, most people, including young adults, realized the crucial role of health care in life. The pandemic opened our eyes to the possibility of life’s ‘what ifs’ and prompted many of us to take a firmer grasp of our health.
As a young adult, learning to make proactive decisions safeguards you from life’s uncertainties. Medicare Plus understands the importance of having peace of mind in case of sudden illness, unplanned admission to the hospital, or medical emergencies. By investing in an ER Guard Plus, you can benefit from emergency and in-patient care. This health card will protect you from ‘what ifs’ like accidents and health emergencies.

No better time to take charge of your health than NOW

Young adults like you need to become more invested in your own healthcare starting with a good diet and maintaining a healthy weight. In addition, getting enough sleep is vital to prevent certain health issues. Emotional wellness is equally important as one’s physical health so it’s highly recommended to engage in self-care activities. Finally, investing in a reliable health card can protect you from health emergencies and sudden illnesses.

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