The latest recommendations are that all adults do some form of aerobic exercise for thirty minutes every day. Aerobic exercise would include walking, biking, swimming, and jogging. This allows the heart rate to elevate and stay elevated to improve cardiovascular fitness. This can have many positive effects on weight, blood pressure control, blood fat control, diabetes, arthritis and circulation problems.
safe level of alcohol consumption depends on many factors and varies from person to person. Alcohol can interact with many prescription medications. As a general rule people should limit themselves to 1 or 1.5 drinks a day, where one drink is equivalent to one standard glass of wine, one beer or one mixed drink with one ounce of alcohol. As one ages, alcohol can have many negative effects on memory, balance, sleep quality, energy levels and sexual function. Just two standard drinks can impair your driving ability and put you over the legal limit of 0.08.
Many factors can influence driving ability including vision problems, hearing problems, memory disturbances, limited mobility due to arthritis, medication effect, and others. If you have a concern, please discuss this with Dr. Koop. If there is any significant uncertainty, there is an organization that does special driving evaluations to ensure the individual is safe to drive.
Patients can often sleep better by improving their “sleep hygiene”. This includes measures such as regular aerobic exercise, not eating late at night, avoiding caffeinated products (coffee, tea, soft drinks and chocolate) in the evenings, take a warm bath before bed, avoiding alcohol (which inhibits REM sleep), avoiding daytime naps/dozing and using the bed only for sleep (don’t read or watch TV in bed). Sleeping pills are not a good long term solution for poor sleep habits.
High blood pressure increases your chance (or risk) for getting heart disease and/or kidney disease, and for having a stroke. It is especially dangerous because it often has no warning signs or symptoms. Regardless of race, age, or gender, anyone can develop high blood pressure.