September: the summer is coming to a close, school is back in session and the holiday season isn’t far away. Perhaps the latter fact is what makes September a good month to be reminded of the benefits of a healthy lifestyle. Fortunately, there are a number of observances this month to do just that which are listed at the end of this post.
When considering good health, it is important to understand there are a number of facets to a healthy lifestyle. The usual suspects consist of eating the proper amount of the right kinds of food or getting the necessary amounts of exercise and sleep. These will certainly lead to a healthier and happier you, but what about emotional and mental health? Perhaps as equally important, mental and emotional health often go ignored or untreated but may impact your well-being just as much if not more than exercise and diet. Much like a tripod relies on all three legs for support and stability, we too perform at our best when all three types of health are in order.
Each week in the month of September, we’ll dive a little further into each type of health discussing the benefits that can be gained by living healthy both individually and financially and how the various types of health can impact your life both positively and negatively.
You may be asking yourself how you can get started on the road to a healthier you. Well, there is no perfect recipe for everyone. All of us are motivated differently. However, something that may help keep you honest and motivated to succeed is an app on your phone. Let’s face it, the majority of us are on our phones all the time and while that could certainly be considered an unhealthy characteristic, there’s no reason we can’t rig the game in our favor and use our phones to help us live healthier lives! Greatist.com has already done the legwork for you and compiled a list of healthy lifestyle apps that can be accessed here.
In addition to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ list of national health observances, the team at CLH Insurance is taking this opportunity to individually improve one or more aspects of their lives this month. Some of the commitments made by the staff include working out regularly, maintaining a healthy diet, reducing the amount of time watching television, reducing stress by organizing storage areas like garages and basements, experimenting with meditation and yoga and making themselves more of a priority in their busy lives.
What are you currently doing in your life to promote healthy living? Maybe you exercise regularly or spend time deep in thought? Whatever you do, we’d love to hear what’s working for you or if you have any tips and strategies for getting over the hump for those who are still working toward a healthier version of themselves. If you aren’t currently living a healthy lifestyle, what are some areas in your life that you can improve upon?
Below is the aforementioned list of some observances during the month of September to promote a healthy lifestyle:
Fruits and Veggies – More Matters Month (http://www.fruitsandveggiesmorematters.org/) “is a health initiative focused on helping Americans increase fruit & vegetable consumption for better health,” according to its official website.
National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month (http://www.coam-month.org/) aims to solve what has been called an epidemic among children and teenagers in America. According to COAM’s website, “In the past four decades, obesity rates in the United States have soared among all age groups. Childhood obesity has increased more than fourfold among those ages 6 to 11. More than 23 million children and teenagers in the United States ages 2 to 19 are obese or overweight. This epidemic puts nearly one third of America’s children at early risk for Type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease and even stroke – conditions usually associated with adulthood.”
The American Association of Suicidology is shining a light on suicide prevention with its National Suicide Prevention Week from September 5-11 (http://www.suicidology.org/about-aas/national-suicide-prevention-week). According to an AAS media kit, approximately 42,700 Americans kill themselves every year. Suicide is the second leading cause of death among young people ages 15-24 with rates increasing more than 200% since the 1950’s. The suicide rate is also higher among the elderly (over 65) than any other group. Furthermore, a surprising statistic in the last few years is the yawning gap between homicides and suicides in America with suicides claiming almost twice as many lives as homicides.
Family Health and Fitness Day will take place on September 24 while National Women’s Health and Fitness Day will be on the 28th (www.fitnessday.com). Family Health and Fitness Day’s “purpose is to promote family involvement in physical activity, one of the goals of the U.S. Surgeon General's Report on Physical Activity and Health.” Similarly, the goal of National Women’s Health and Fitness Day “is to encourage women to take control of their health: to learn the facts they need to make smart health choices, and to make time for regular physical activity.”
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the leading cause of death in the United States for 2014 was heart disease which continues to hold the top spot for cause of death in America for over 90 years. To combat this, the World Heart Federation will hold its World Heart Day on September 29 (http://worldheartday.org/world-heart-day-2015/) to raise awareness about cardiovascular disease.
For a full list of health observances in September and throughout the year, visit https://healthfinder.gov/nho/nhoyear.aspx?year=2016