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Showing Your Health Some Thanks

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Showing Your Health Some Thanks

Showing Your Health & Wellness Some Gratitude

With the holidays and feelings of thankfulness upon us, why not take some time to show your body some extra love and care? The health experts at Antelope Valley Medical Center are here to share some easy ways that you can stay on top of your health during the holidays and beyond!

Wash Your Hands Often

When it comes to supporting your general health and wellness, keeping your hands squeaky clean and germ-free is your first line of defense. This is because your hands are the easiest way to transfer illness-causing germs to communal surfaces and to other people.

When you have soiled hands, germs can spread in the following ways:

  • Touching dirty surfaces.
  • Eating without washing your hands first.
  • Touching your face with unwashed hands.
  • Preparing food with unwashed hands.
  • Coughing or sneezing without covering your nose and mouth.

To help prevent the spread of germs, follow these hand hygiene tips:

  • Wash your hands with clean, running water.
  • Use antibacterial soap.
  • Scrub your hands for a least 20 seconds.
  • Dry your hands with disposable hand towels or air dry them.
  • Use alcohol-based hand sanitizer when you can’t wash your hands.

Prevent Foodborne Illness

With plenty of food-centric festivities coming up throughout the holiday season, it is especially important to do what you can to prevent foodborne illness. Food poisoning is an infection or disease that is caused by eating food that has been contaminated with illness-causing germs and bacteria.

When getting ready for holiday festivities, keep these tips in mind to avoid unintentional tummy aches:

  • Refrigerate leftovers within 2 hours of cooking them or keep them hot.
  • Keep raw meat, seafood, poultry, and seafood away from other foods.
  • Wash your hands immediately after handling raw meat, seafood, poultry, and seafood.
  • Wash and disinfect surfaces and utensils after preparing raw meat, seafood, or poultry.
  • Throw out leftovers 2-4 days after preparing them.

Eat a Balanced Diet

While it can be tempting to overindulge in your favorite holiday sweets and treats this time of year, it is still important for you to eat a balanced diet. While you can still enjoy festive foods, keep the following tips in mind to continue to support your health and wellness:

  • Cut back on red and fatty cuts of meat.
  • Try to eat less full-fat dairy products.
  • Eat a variety of colorful fruits and vegetables.
  • Limit your consumption of processed foods.
  • Opt for whole grains.
  • Cut back on sodas and juices with added sugar.
  • Drink plenty of water.

Start Healthful Holiday Traditions

Although many of us are tempted to spend the fall and winter months catching up on rest and getting cozy indoors, the holiday season can bring out plenty of bad health habits, including falling into sedentary behaviors. Rather than spending all of your bonding time around eating, drinking, and watching television—how about incorporating wellness into your traditions?

Some healthful activities to try out this year include:

  • Move the focus away from food and remember the reason for the season.
  • Bake healthier versions of holiday and seasonal treats.
  • Go for a family walk after holiday dinner.
  • Decorate the house as a family.
  • Play board games.
  • Incorporate mindfulness meditation.
  • Try journaling about why you’re thankful.

Stay Up-to-Date of Wellness Exams

Another excellent way to take charge of your family’s health and wellness is to remember to have your annual wellness exams. While many people find themselves heading to the doctor when they’re not feeling their best, having routine check-ups can help to support your general wellness.

Get Your Flu Shot

Getting the seasonal influenza vaccine is the single most effective way to protect you and your loved ones from getting sick with the flu. The flu shot helps your immune system to produce the appropriate antibodies to fight off infection when they come in contact with specific strains of the influenza virus.

However, it is important to keep in mind that it takes your body about two weeks to develop antibodies following your flu vaccination. With the flu season reaching its peak during the winter months, this time of year is the best time to get vaccinated, especially if you plan on traveling!

Well-Women Exams

Along with general check-ups, when it comes to women looking after their reproductive health, having routine well-woman visits is a key component of preventative care. During a well-woman visit, you can expect your visit to include:

  • An external visual exam.
  • Manual exam.
  • Speculum exam.
  • Pap smear.
  • Breast exam.

Your physician will be checking your body for abnormalities that may be a cause for concern, such as:

  • Irregular organ placement,
  • Cysts or growths.
  • Signs of rashes or irritation.
  • Lesions or spores.
  • Other signs of infection.

Health Screenings for Men

Men are more likely to only seek medical care when they experience serious health complications. However, routine wellness exams can help doctors to diagnose and treat health issues in their early stages.

Because men are at an increased risk for developing them, they should be getting screened for the following health issues on a routine basis:

  • Colorectal cancer
  • Lung cancer
  • Prostate cancer
  • Heart disease
  • High cholesterol
  • Type 2 diabetes

Remember To Wear Your Mask

As we continue to navigate the COVID-19 outbreak, it is important to do what we can to protect ourselves and others from getting sick—especially if you plan on traveling during the holiday season. Since COVID-19 and other respiratory infections typically spread through respiratory droplets, it is recommended that you wear your mask—even if you’ve been fully vaccinated.

Specialty Care in Lancaster, CA

As the only full-service, acute-care hospital in Antelope Valley, Antelope Valley Medical Center is proud to deliver exceptional medical care to the community we serve. Our knowledgeable staff is dedicated to providing our patients with heartfelt, compassionate care and medical excellence.

Call (661) 949-5000 or visit our dedicated services page for more information about the offerings at AVMC.