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Spring Cleaning for Your Health Goals

Spring Cleaning for Your Health Goals

As spring approaches, you may feel inspired to begin building healthier habits. The weather will soon be getting warmer, which will allow you to start spending more time outside. Farmer's markets full of fresh fruits and vegetables are coming back. This spring, get your body and mind on the right track by making your health goals a priority.

Eat More Fruits and Vegetables

Spring and summer are the perfect time to incorporate more fresh fruits and vegetables into your diet because they’re in season. Some produce that thrives in warm weather includes mushrooms, bell peppers, zucchini, and berries. A diet rich in fruits and vegetables can not only give you more energy throughout the day, but it can also reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke, lower the risk of digestive problems, and have a positive effect on blood sugar.

With Frederick County being home to over 1,300 farms and more than 181,500 acres of farmland, buying local produce from farmers markets can support the community and allow you to choose foods that don’t contain chemicals, pesticides, hormones, or antibiotics.

Get Routine Blood Tests

Getting routine lab work done can help your doctor check that your organs are functioning properly. Blood tests can help catch diseases or conditions such as cancers, HIV/AIDS, diabetes, anemia, and more before you experience any symptoms. Your doctor may recommend different blood tests, but there are some that should be done each year:

  • Thyroid panel
  • Nutritional tests
  • Comprehensive metabolic panel
  • Complete blood count
  • Metabolic marker tests
  • Inflammatory marker tests

Put Your Mental Health First

Although it’s sometimes overlooked, your mental health is just as important as your physical health. Your mental health affects how you feel, think, and act and can determine how you handle stress and make healthy choices.

Taking care of your mental health and practicing self-care looks and feels differently for everyone. It’s important to find a balance of stress relievers or activities that work for you. Doing something creative, listening to music, staying active, and eating well can help.

Become More Active

As the weather warms up, you may find yourself outdoors more often. This is the perfect opportunity to increase your physical activity. Regular physical activity doesn’t only help with weight management and reducing the risk of chronic conditions like type 2 diabetes, heart disease, many types of cancer, depression and anxiety, and more. It also improves your mood, boosts energy, improves sleep, and enhances your immune system. You should aim to get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise each week.

Here are a few easy ways to start incorporating more physical activity into your daily schedule:

  • Take a walk at least once a day.
  • Park further away from your workplace or the grocery store.
  • Take the stairs instead of elevators.
  • Play outdoors with your children or grandchildren.
  • Start gardening or doing yard work.
  • Dance while cleaning or preparing dinner.

Visit Your Primary Care Provider

Many people think you only need to visit your doctor when you’re sick, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. By getting annual well visits, your doctor can learn about your unique social and family health history and how those factors affect your health.

By having regular visits with your Primary Care provider, you can talk to your doctor about your health and wellness goals. Your doctor can give you tips on how to reduce stress or anxiety, eat healthier, or what exercise regime is right for you. Your doctor will recommend screenings based on your medical history, age, risk factors, and lifestyle to help prevent illnesses and other health issues before they progress.

By getting regular well visits, you can stay up to date on your immunizations. This can include vaccinations for flu, pneumonia, HPV, tetanus, COVID-19, and more. Getting immunizations helps protect you and those around you from illness, hospitalization, and even death.

Talk to your doctor about how you can work toward being happier and healthier this spring. Schedule an appointment with Primary Care today by calling 240-215-6310.