As we age, we tend to find ourselves facing new health challenges, many we never anticipated. To help you live a full life, here are some tips to help combat or manage the top five chronic health conditions.

  1. High Blood Pressure – Did you know 29 percent of adults in the U.S. have high blood pressure? High blood pressure can lead to serious issues like stroke and heart attack. To ensure you’re keeping your blood pressure under control consider limiting your sodium intake, exercising regularly, and working on losing weight. While your level of activity and eating choices heavily impact your blood pressure, you should remember stress does too. Look for ways to keep yourself calm and away from stressful situations as well.
  1. High Cholesterol – High Cholesterol is similar to high blood pressure in the fact that it can sneak up on you before you realize what’s going on. That’s why it’s critical that you schedule regular doctor’s appointments to have blood drawn and tested. In order to prevent or combat high cholesterol start by consuming less saturated fats, alcohol and trans fats. Staying active and watching what you eat also greatly contribute to maintaining a lower cholesterol level.
  1. Arthritis – As we age, our joint cartilage begins to break down, leading to osteoarthritis, one of the most common forms of arthritis. To help prevent the unwanted stiff and achy joints, you’ll want to maintain the recommended body weight for your stature, look for ways to prevent trips and falls, and, of course, exercising regularly.
  1. Coronary Heart Disease – Stemming from other conditions like high blood pressure and cholesterol, coronary heart disease leads to heart attacks, blood clots and more. If you’re taking the steps to lower your blood pressure or cholesterol, you’re always taking the right steps to lowering your risk for coronary heart disease.
  1. Diabetes – This condition is a mounting threat to the American people, as more than 30.3 million people are now treating and managing their diabetes. Not caring for diabetes can lead to many other health issues, no one wants to face, including kidney disease, blindness and nerve damage. If you are diagnosed with pre-diabetes, it’s recommended you lose up to 7 percent of your body weight to help reduce your risk. Much like the other conditions mentioned above, exercising for 30 minutes a day, five times a week and maintaining a healthy diet significantly reduces your risk.

As the New Year rolls around, now is the perfect time to start setting health-focused goals for you and your family. Taking the steps of increasing activity and consuming a healthy diet can go a long way in preventing and managing these conditions.