US Department of Health & Human Services: Eat Healthy

Excerpted from US Department of Health & Human Services Office of Women’s Health

Following a healthy eating plan doesn’t mean that you can’t indulge every now and then. If what you eat is generally low in fat (especially saturated and trans fat) and sugars and you are getting enough vitamins and minerals, you may indulge in a rich dessert or serving of fried food every once in a while. If, on the other hand, you eat a lot of high-calorie foods, you are likely to get all the calories you need quickly without getting enough vital nutrients.

To help prevent heart disease, stroke, and perhaps other diseases, you should eat mainly:

  • Fruits and vegetables
  • Grains (at least half of your grains should be whole grains, such as whole wheat, oatmeal, and brown rice)
  • Fat-free or low-fat versions of milk, cheese, yogurt, and other milk products
  • Fish, skinless poultry, lean red meats, dry beans, eggs, and nuts
  • Polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats

Also, you should limit the amount of foods you eat that contain:

  • Saturated fat
  • Trans fat
  • Cholesterol
  • Sodium
  • Added sugars

US Department of Health & Human Services: Smoking

Excerpted from US Department of Health & Human Services Office of Women’s Health

Your health begins to improve the minute you stop smoking, and you begin to lower your long-term risk of many smoking-related diseases. Smoking causes or can contribute to many serious health problems, including:

  • Cancers of the lung, throat, mouth, voice box, esophagus, pancreas, kidney, bladder, cervix, uterus, stomach, and blood
  • Lung diseases
  • Heart disease
  • Stroke
  • Atherosclerosis, or hardening and narrowing of the arteries
  • Gum disease
  • Eye diseases that can lead to blindness
  • Osteoporosis and the risk of hip fracture

Smoking also:

  • Makes illnesses last longer
  • Causes more wound infections after surgery
  • Makes it harder to get pregnant