3 Keys to Living a Healthy Life

The importance of living a healthy life can never be overemphasized. Public health aims to improve the health status of populations through health promotion, illness prevention and health protection. Achieving this aim will bring about economic growth, a healthy society, and increased life expectancy. In tandem with promoting health and well-being amongst populations, all member states of the United Nations adopted the 2030 agenda for sustainable development.

The main focus of this agenda is the 17 sustainable development goals (SDG). All countries are expected to act according to these goals to meet the target set by the agenda.

One of the goals of the SDG is good health and well-being. The SDG3 is to ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages. All these are on the governmental level, i.e., what international leaders are doing to ensure healthy living. This article will focus on three tips at an individual level to ensure healthy living.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), health is not only the absence of disease and injury but of complete mental, physical, social, and spiritual well-being. So living a healthy lifestyle is being intentional about our health and well-being and making choices that benefit our body, mind and soul.

Living a sedentary lifestyle means taking little to no physical activity. According to Plato, “Lack of activity destroys the good condition of every human being, while movement and methodical physical exercise save it and preserve it“.

Tip 1: Physical Activity

Adding physical activity to our daily activities is necessary for healthy living. Research has shown that exercising regularly reduces the risk of developing certain types of diseases like Type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and some cancers.

It also helps manage body weight and induces a night of restful sleep. As Plato said, the human body was not designed to be stationary; physical activity keeps it optimized and in good condition. Activities like walking, jogging, swimming, taekwondo, and sports can be added to our exercise journey. It does not have to be intense – just by one step at a time, you can increase your activity range as you improve.

The amount and intensity of exercise required depends on the individual and their age. It is not advised to engage in activities beyond one’s ability to avoid causing bodily injury.

Areas to Consider when Starting a Physical Fitness Journey

Maintaining a balance between these components helps you to become physically fit.

  • Cardiovascular Endurance: This is all about your stamina. How well can your body withstand rigorous exercise for a certain period before gasping for breath?
  • Muscle Strength and Endurance: Muscle strength is the amount of force you exert to lift an object, while muscular endurance is how many times you can lift that object without fatigue.
  • Flexibility: This involves the range of movement of the joints in your body. This entails the length to which the joints can stretch before reaching their threshold.

Tip 2: Healthy Food

Food is necessary for survival. The type of food we consume is also a determining factor for healthy living. Some people eat to satisfy their hunger and cravings without giving importance to the kind of food they eat and the nutrients contained in the food.

Rather than just satisfying our hunger, nutrients are crucial because they nourish the body and help the vital organs function properly. It is also important that we enjoy the food we eat. Making healthy choices does not mean the food we eat should be tasteless. It doesn’t necessarily mean we must restrict ourselves from eating certain types of food.

What is crucial is moderation. You should listen to your body and know when you have had enough. It is often advised that you should not eat while watching TV because, at that moment, you are eating mindlessly and not paying attention to the signals your body is giving you, which often leads to overeating.

Foods to Include in Your Diet

  • Fruits and vegetables are a rich source of vitamins, minerals, and dietary fibers, which helps prevent constipation.
  • Proteins such as seafood, lean meats and poultry, eggs, legumes (beans and peas), soy products, nuts, and seeds should be included in our diet. Red meat should not be taken regularly as it contains saturated fat, which causes ill health.
  • Fats and oils are also essential foods that the body needs. They serve as a cushion for some vital organs and help the body absorb vitamins that are fat-soluble. Good sources of fat and oils are fish rich in omega 3, nuts and seeds, and vegetable oils.
  • Carbohydrates are energy-giving food. They can be found in bread, rice, legumes, pasta, fruits and vegetables, and starchy foods.

Diet is an essential part of healthy living. A healthy plate is a plate that contains all the right types of foods in their right proportions.

Tip 3: Regular Checkups and Preventive Measures

Going for regular health checkups helps in the early detection of some life-threatening illnesses. Health checkups assess your overall health and show if you are at risk of developing any condition. Health checkups also include answering questions about family history of disease and proper management of health conditions to prevent any symptoms from potentially worsening.

Women should do regular breast self-examinations to check for lumps in the breast and any changes in appearance or size. If swelling or distortion is noticed, it can be treated immediately before symptoms worsen.


Taking vaccines is another way of steering clear from certain diseases. Vaccines are to be administered before a person is infected, so the body can produce antibodies for when harmful organisms invade the body.

For instance, Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccine protects against the types of HPV that cause a risk of cervical cancer. It is essential that all vaccines are up to date, so we can protect ourselves and those around us.

Finally, we cannot be too complacent about our health. How we live our lives depends on our choices. We are blessed with an abundance of resources to satisfy our needs. We are also blessed with the mental capacity to think and decide what is right or wrong. The consequences of our choices will be ours to bear.

If we are healthy, we can help those around us make healthier choices, and then we will be productive in our society and be role models for future generations. Being healthy is good business.

Roheemah Adebayo

Roheemah Adebayo, is from Nigeria, but currently lives in the UK. She studied Public Health as a first degree in Abu Dhabi, and did her Master’s degree also in Public Health in the UK. She is passionately interested in health promotion and well-being. She loves to encourage positive attitudes and behaviour which she believes are essential for a successful future.

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