We all want to live the happiest, healthiest life possible. As a physician, I encourage people to make healthy lifestyle choices; including healthy eating habits, regular physical activity, and smoking cessation. By not eating healthy, not staying fit, and smoking, you are not taking care of your body – and in order to be happy, we also need to be healthy.

When we think of the word “diet” we often correlate that to weight loss. However, weight loss and weight management are not the only benefits of healthy eating. While it is definitely part of it, the food you eat can also play a significant role in other aspects of your health. For example, if you consume food or beverages that contain lots of sugar, you are more likely to develop cavities. A trip to the dentist, in this case, is something you typically want to avoid (though it is important to take care of your teeth by going for regular checkups and cleanings.) Sugar contains no healthy fats, proteins, enzymes or nutrients. All it does is destroy your body. As a result, individuals who consume sugar are much more likely to develop heart disease, liver disease, diabetes, and are even at risk of developing certain types of cancer.

Similarly, regular exercise can also have great health benefits aside from weight loss. By staying fit you are at less of a risk of developing heart disease, high blood pressure, and osteoporosis. Physical activity can also be great for those who suffer from anxiety and/or stress, and can even help boost one’s self-esteem.

In order to live a long and healthy life, those who smoke should quit doing so. It has been scientifically proven that smoking causes cancer. In fact, 84% of cancer-related deaths are caused by lung cancer due to smoking. Smoking can also lead to emphysema – a condition in which the lungs become damaged, resulting in difficulty breathing. Alcohol is another thing individuals should try to avoid. Excessive drinking can lead to liver damage and a variety of other health problems.