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Dr Christian Jessen’s six top tips for health success

dr christian jessen 22 2 12As we hopefully see the back of this cold weather, it’s time to get our health in check in time for spring. Here are Dr Christian Jessen’s six top tips for health success.

  1. Don’t hold back. Doctors aren’t just there for physical ailments – never be afraid to tell your GP about mental conditions such as depression and anxiety. Antidepressants and/or therapy can be transformative.
  2. Get some sun. You are warned about sun protection, however, research has shown how important vitamin D is for health. So don’t be obsessive about covering up. For most, half an hour of sun exposure, two to three times a week, is fine.
  3. Don’t obsess about EIGHT hours’ sleep. Sleep is vital for health – a lack of it has been connected with everything from depression to diabetes. But we’re all different, so don’t be concerned about getting eight hours, as long as you feel refreshed when you wake.
  4. Wear the right heels. If you must wear high heels, choose a thicker heel or a wedge to increase stability and distribute weight. Go for an open toe if you can – it helps to remove pressure from toes, helping prevent corns and bunions.
  5. Check yourself [and him]. Be aware of your body. For instance, get to know how your breasts feel and look normally, keep an eye on moles, and your stools. Check any changes with your GP. Get your man to check himself, too – men are notoriously bad at this.
  6. Don’t believe the cold-busting hype. There’s no evidence Echinacea and vitamin C do much to prevent cold and flu. Not smoking, a healthy diet, plenty of exercise and rest will help, and washing your hands regularly – the main way germs transfer.

This article was first published in at home’s ’Ask the Doctor’ with Dr Christian Jessen in March 2012. [Read the digital edition here]

Photograph: John Wight Photography

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