Living and Feeling Healthier

What is wellness? This new buzzword on everyone’s lips simply means being in good physical and mental health and maintaining this through good diet and exercise habits. It is about waking up every morning and having enough time, energy and freedom to live the lives we want.

Every day, and especially in January after our Christmas excesses, we search for ways to feel and look better and lose that little bit of extra weight that we have gained recently. The real key to success is a balanced diet, combined with sufficient water intake and exercise. Combining these three keys to daily wellness will give us the opportunity to feel good every day.

Why do we need to improve our wellness?

On the whole, we have an increasingly sedentary lifestyle, poor nutrition, too many over-processed convenience foods, and a lack of proper (David Heber PhD, director of the UCLA centre for Human Nutrition). Our modern, busy lifestyles are full of stress and this, coupled with pollution and a poor diet, can lead to a number of illnesses, such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and coronary heart disease, as well as increasing weight.

A 2003 survey found that about 21% of Scots (more than 850,000 people) were obese and 1 in 4 primary school children were officially overweight. Results also indicated that 19% of boys and 22% of girls aged between 2 and 15 will be obese by 2015. In 2002, 35 Scottish people died as a direct result of being grossly overweight and NHS Scotland is spending more than £170 million each year treating obesity-related conditions – that’s as much as they spend on illnesses related to smoking.

There is some good news!

The good news in the midst of these gloomy statistics is that we can change. We are all in control of our own diet and activity levels and have the power to improve our lifestyles so that we are healthier and happier. All you need is the right information and a desire to put it into action.

Steps for optimum wellness:

1) Define your goals.
Write down where you are now and where you want to be in terms of health and lifestyle.

2) Make an action plan you can commit to.
And stick to it!

3) Balance your diet.
You need enough of the right food, including fruit and vegetables, protein, good carbohydrates and fats, vitamins, minerals and fibre.

4) Exercise regularly.
Exercise can help you look and feel your best. It conditions your heart, relieves stress and makes it easier to maintain a healthy body weight.

5) Drink lots of water.
Your body is approximately two thirds water and in an average day you can lose one pint even without sweating too much. To stay healthy you should drink 6 to 8 glasses of water a day.

Prevention is much better than cure. With good nutrition and enough exercise you can indeed live healthier and better, every day!

For more information, please look at or get in touch with Dr Amanda Gillies on

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