BBC Science

Healthy LifeHealth professionals, policy makers and individuals can potentially improve the chances of having a healthier life by addressing the complex interactions between genetics, development, and life events and lifestyles. Here at the YMCA of the East Bay, we work every day to help members of our community reach their fitness goals, try new exercises or activities, build relationships with other Y members through social events and work towards a happier and healthier self. Cooking foods (above 165 F) destroys most harmful bacteria and other pathogens; if you choose to eat uncooked foods like fruits or vegetables, they should be thoroughly washed with running treated (safe to drink) tap water right before eating.

This is in addition to the fluid we get from the food we eat. All non-alcoholic drinks count, but water and lower-fat milk are healthier choices. EUFIC is a non-profit organisation that provides clear, practical information on food and health, based on sound science. We believe in a world where people choose to live healthily because they know how to.

Cut down on processed food. Processed food is not good because (a) most nutritional value is lost in the creation of these foods and (b) the added preservatives are bad for our health. Many processed foods contain a high amount of salt, which leads to higher blood pressure and heart disease. In general, the more ingredients a food has on the label (ending with ‘ite’ or ‘ate’), the more processed it is. Eating 50 grams of processed meat a day has also been found to increase the risk of colorectal cancer by 18%. 7 Go for less processed food, such as a baked potato over chips, a fresh fruit over canned fruit, steamed fish over canned fish, or organic produce over food with high preservatives.

Fresh fruit and vegetables are full of antioxidants, which may improve your lung health and help avoid asthma attacks. Aim for 5 servings of vegetables and 2 servings of fruit every day. Eating fish often may help with your asthma too. People taking medicine for mental-health problems should not stop taking these medications, no matter how “well” they feel, until they have discussed their situation with their prescribing doctor(s).

‘Healthy living’ means making changes to your life to develop new habits that improve your health in all these ways. The trend in life expectancy and healthy life expectancy at age 65 has also been upwards in recent decades. Once they reach the age of 65, in 2012 to 2014, males could expect to live an additional 18.8 years and females an additional 21.2 years.