“What self-health screenings should I be doing this year?”
…this question was NOT at the top of everyone’s Search Engine searches this January 1st…but it should be! Don’t we all want our time on this Earth to be as active, fulfilling and physically comfortable as possible?
In that spirit, here are 8 things that you need to start doing, RIGHT NOW, to live longer, better, now & 50 years from now.
Video is 8 min long. Text (follows) is 5 min read.
Pick what works for you!
To LIVE BETTER, LONGER…DO THIS!!
1. Eat Well
As Michael Pollan says, famously, “Eat Real Food. Not Too Much. Mostly Plants.”
Of the top causes of death in the USA, the top 5 (excluding car accidents), are strongly correlated to diet. Cardiovascular disease, stroke, diabetes…once you’re diagnosed with these conditions, there is a limit to how much ‘fixing your diet’ can help. BUT, if you start now, you will be set up for life, and have a much better ‘risk profile’ as you age.
This means you’ll be radder, longer.
2. Exercise Regularly
Same rationale as #1. A majority of leading causes of deaths are related to conditions that can be prevented and delayed by regular moderate to vigorous exercise.
Start the habits NOW, and you’ll see immediate gains.
Beyond the prevention of cardiovascular issues (heart attacks, strokes), moderate to vigorous exercise has a protective effect agains Alzheimers, and other neurodegenerative diseases.
Um…staying radder longer…and not loosing your mind? Sign me up!
3. Protect Yourself From the Sun
This reduces skin cancer risk AND prevents wrinkles!
More than just sunscreen…think overall protection from sun with long sleeve shirts, hats, sunglasses. Sunscreen is great, but also pollutes the environment, so if you can use a wearable instead, you get bonus points from Mother Earth!
Double Bonus Points if you play this song daily for the next month. Do it and tell me it didn’t make your days better 🙂
4. Safe Sex Practices
- Consentual Intimate Relations
- Knowing where that penis-vagina has been lately
- Using protection if you don’t know where it’s been lately
- Regular STD testing if you have multiple partners, or suspect infidelity
5. Regular Yearly Physicals
Teenage Years: To establish birth control plan; become comfortable with a medical provider, so if you have concerns, you can go to them.
6. Get to know how YOUR BODY looks
Look at yourself in the mirror. Your breasts, your vulva, your scrotum (yes, men & other people with penises read these, too!).
Get to know how they look at different times of the month, so that you can NOTICE if they change.
Lumps, Bumps, or NEW DIMPLES (especially near the nipple) are concerning
7. Get to know how YOUR BODY feels
Wash yourself, with your hand and soapy water, regularily.
This is better than a loofah or towel, because it lets you FEEL for new nodules or painful spots, then GO to a trusted medical provider if you (or a partner) find something concerning.
Your body is amazing. Don’t be afraid of it.
Remember, breast cancer RARELY hurts. Usually, nodules feel like small almonds or raisins. If it hurts, it is USUALLY a good sign…but monitor it and still get it checked out if it persists.
8. Don’t forget the vulva!
More on this to come, but in general, start looking! Get to know what ‘your normal’ is, so that you can see if there are shape, size or color changes!
Be aware for discharge amount changes, discomfort, etc. Look when you are done going to the bathroom, washing, changing, etc. It’s a part of you!
You’d know if your knee sprouted a cyst, or changed from tan to white…why don’t you pay attention to the vulva in the same way?
9. Post-menopausal Changes
Be aware that certain changes can happen, but know that leaking pee or poop, and pain with sex are NOT. NORMAL. CONSEQUENCES. OF. AGING.
Do we need to say it again for those in the back?
If you are having painful sex, leaking pee or poop (or farts), talk to your trusted primary caregiver! They can help, and so can pelvic PT!
Thanks for Reading!
This is a big deal. We’ll talk later about life expectancies of people with vaginas vs people with penises, and why most of the things that kill us in the end…could be postponed by making simple changes earlier in life.
If you enjoyed this general health post, please check out my Pelvic Floored Signature Lecture Series for in-depth training of how your current pelvic floor musce status could be contributing to your pain, incontinence, constipation, pelvic organ pressure, or sexual dysfunction complaints. The program includes 12 mini lectures, and 12 progressive exercise programs that I developed based upon current research, as well as my 16 years of experience in pelvic health. You can stream them as often as you’d like from the privacy of your home
A full pelvic floor physical therapy program, for less than the price of one standard in person PT evaluation!
What other motivation do you need? Did I mention that for every 4 courses I sell, I will donate one to a person in need, through my People Before Profits Program. I am so proud of this. By buying my program you are not only helping yourself (or your loved one), but also someone in need.
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