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Healthy habits to adopt this year

We all know eating well and exercise can help to keep us healthy but there are some things you may have been putting off that you can do this year.

Many people set goals for a new year which include becoming more motivated and active but aren’t sure how much exercise they actually need and how it can have a positive impact on their heart health.

During Covid, many people have also been putting off scheduled screenings like heart health checks or cervical screening and given the increase in skin cancer in Queensland it’s also important to keep up to date with skin checks too.

How much should I exercise?

There is no doubt the past few years had a massive impact on your exercise program and while for some people it may have stopped altogether, others might have found exercise as a way to improve their mental and heart health. Much community sport was abandoned, particular if indoors and other people may not have felt up to exercising at all. There are health guidelines you can have a chat with your GP about before beginning an exercise program.

Most guidelines are based on age groups from infants to seniors and are aimed at various levels of ability. While infants may have energetic play, preschoolers could be expected to run, jump and play ball games for an hour a day. Teens are likely to play organised sport but they should also complete bone and muscle strengthening activities a few times per week. Adults focus more on heart health and keeping off the weight so should be active most days and aim for 2.5 hours of moderate activity each week. This is on top of 1.25 hours of intense physical activity like tennis or jogging each week. Manual labour and household chores can count towards the exercise program so lifting and digging can help strengthen muscles. For over 65s, it’s important to complete 30 minutes of moderate exercise like walking and gardening each day while focusing on flexibility and balance.

Checks you’ve been putting off

Covid means a lot of people have been putting off health checks. Regular heart health checks for people at risk are very important, as are screening checks and skin checks because of the rate of skin cancer in Queensland.

What is a heart health check?

Covered by medicare, a heart health check can be performed by your GP who will determine your risk of a heart attack or stroke. They are quick and painless. Read about how a heart check could save your life here.

Cervical screening

Women aged between 25 and 74 are eligible for a subsidised cervical screening test every five years. Women who have ever been sexually active should be tested and your GP can complete it for you.

Skin cancer in Queensland

We know Australians have high rates of skin cancer so if you notice any changes to your skin you should talk to your GP. Read more about skin cancer and what to look for.

Give Drayton Street Family Practice a call today on (07) 4171 0711 to book an appointment with a GP in Brisbane.

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