Heath consciousness has been on the rise in the past decade. Juice Bars which were not so common in the ’90s are now sprouting everywhere. The government has imposed stricter measures on cigarette use and the tax on tobacco has become ridiculously high just to discourage smokers from the habit. However, even with good intentions, some health-conscious individuals tend to go overboard and make mistakes, especially when they don’t know any better.
Are you one of them? Check out these five biggest mistakes you should avoid when caring for your overall health.
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1. Over Dosing On Vitamin And Mineral Supplements
Vitamins have become easily accessible nowadays, and they come in many forms. Back in the day, you only get vitamins through the food you eat, whereas now, vitamins are so accessible that you can get them over the counter without prescriptions which makes them prone to misuse. Vitamins come in many forms, they come in tablet, capsules, powder, gummies and even liquid multivitamin.
Generally speaking, vitamins are good for you. But it’s common knowledge that anything in excess isn’t good. Taking extreme amounts of vitamins can lead to vitamin toxicity or hypervitaminosis. Consuming more than the prescribed dosage given by your doctor could be potentially harmful.
Water- soluble vitamins such as vitamin C, when taken in large doses can cause kidney stones and diarrhea. When taking vitamins, always remember to follow the RDA or the Recommended Dietary Allowances. However, if you’re already eating a balanced diet, there’s likely no need for vitamin and mineral supplements.
Often, you find yourself reaching for a bottle of paracetamol to alleviate a throbbing headache or treat a low-grade fever. However, the fever you may be experiencing could be your body telling you that you have an infection. So, while it could give you temporary relief, it could also mask the source of your fever, and may keep you from finding out the true source of your illness. Moreover, misuse of paracetamol, especially excessive intake, is harmful to the liver.
But a more serious case is taking antibiotics without prescriptions. Taking antibiotics too often and for the wrong reasons could lead to antibiotic resistance. This happens when the bacteria being targeted develop resistance to the drug that should kill them. When they’re not eliminated completely, they continue to grow inside the body and cause severe symptoms which will require stronger antibiotics that are either too expensive or difficult to find.
3. Exercising Too Much
Gym memberships are expensive, but signing up for one doesn’t mean you have to totally take advantage of all equipment, machines and tools. The recommended amount of exercise for an adult should not exceed 150 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic exercise a week.
You’ll know you’ve been doing it excessively when you’re always tired, you get irritated so easily, you feel depressed and you can no longer function normally. It’s important to note that rest is important in any exercise routine. It helps the muscles to recover and work more efficiently. Too much exercise will only lead to injuries, stress, and early wear and tear. You could suffer from a sprained ankle, dislocated wrist, tendinitis, and shin splints. So instead of improving your health, you actually end up with more issues than you started with.
When starting an exercise regimen, it is suggested to start slowly and build up gradually. Start with simple activities like brisk walking and stretching, then gradually increase and begin to add more activities like aerobics or Zumba as your stamina improves.
4. Getting Into Weight Loss Trends Without Consulting Your Doctor
Losing excess weight can improve one’s health. But prior to diving into the latest weight-loss trend it’s always important to consult with your GP.
One of the most popular trends in weight loss is intermittent fasting (IF). Primarily, IF is not a diet but an eating pattern. It does not dictate what foods you should eat, rather, when you should eat them.
Ideally, the pattern is 16 hours fasting with an eight-hour eating window. However, some would go and do 23-hour fasting with only a one-hour eating window without consulting their doctor. Applying OMAD or One Meal A Day to your diet plan is something you shouldn’t do on a whim. This approach could lead to nausea, dizziness, headache, dehydration, and could even lead to an eating disorder. Sudden change like this in your body could result to hypoglycemia or a sudden drop in blood sugar, which could be dangerous.
Another popular weight-loss trend is the keto diet, it is a low-carb, high-fat diet that has gained notoriety because of testimonials from popular celebrities who’ve tried and swore by it. Just like IF, keto has many known cons, including constipation, kidney stones, brain fog, and upset stomach called the ‘keto flu’.
These weight loss diets can be effective but have to done correctly and safely. So before subscribing to any weight-loss trend, make sure to consult with your doctor first especially if you have existing health issues.
5. Consulting The Internet Instead Of Your Doctor
With the popularity of the internet these days, you can easily Google just about anything under the sun. But you have to remember that an actual consultation with a licensed medical professional is the only means to get an accurate diagnosis for your illness.
Doctors run multiple tests and laboratory examinations to zero in on what could be causing your symptoms. With a proper diagnosis, you can get the right treatment plan based on a professional medical assessment. On the other hand, looking up treatments for a perceived illness and taking incorrect medications without proper tests may only cause more health issues.
Being mindful and extra conscious about one’s health is a must if you want to live a long, healthy life. However, going overboard is never a good idea. When it comes to maintaining health, moderation is still the safest route. Instead of obsessing on every little thing, try to create balanced, healthy lifestyle and most of all, know when to seek professional help, especially if you have health issues that need to be addressed.