Health leaders in the city are encouraging Leeds residents to invest in their future by making small changes that can make a big difference.
18-24 November is Self-Care Week in the UK, which encourages people to look at what they can do to protect their physical and mental health and wellbeing.
There are lots of things that people can do to look after themselves:
- Get active. Try to exercise for at least twenty minutes a day. It’s ideal if you can incorporate this into your normal day, for example by walking to work, taking the dog out for longer, using the stairs or even dancing around the kitchen table to your favourite songs.
- Eat well. Healthy eating is crucial to our health so we can start by swapping unhealthy snacks for better options such as nuts, seeds and fruit.
- Make positive changes. Take steps to stop those bad habits that can affect your health. Make a plan to stop smoking, reduce your alcohol intake and get active. Your pharmacist can help with lifestyle changes such as weight management and stop smoking services. You can also get help and advice from One You Leeds – https://oneyouleeds.co.uk/
- Be prepared. If you do become unwell, most minor ailments can be treated at home by keeping a well-stocked medicine cabinet. Speak to your local pharmacist who can help you stock up your medicines cabinet and offer you expert advice and support on common winter health conditions.
- A good’s night’s sleep is essential to our health and wellbeing so make sure you get enough, ideally 7-8 hours a night.
- Stop and smell the roses. These days we lead such busy lives that we sometimes forget to slow down. Try to find time in your day to quieten your mind. Mindfulness or yoga might be helpful.
Dr Ian Cameron, Director of Public Health at Leeds City Council, says ‘’it’s never too early or too late to begin to make small, simple changes that will enhance and protect your health now and, in the future, and often, one small change will make a big difference to your wellbeing. For instance, choosing to become more active will not only improve your physical health, it will also boost your mood, particularly if you choose to exercise outdoors in the fresh air.”
Dr Gordon Sinclair, Clinical Chair at NHS Leeds Clinical Commissioning Group, adds: “Self-Care Week is about prevention but it’s also about staying well if you have a long term condition and understanding how to treat minor ailments, such as coughs, colds and sore throats.
“There are lots of excellent resources and help available on the CCG website to help you do that – https://www.leedsccg.nhs.uk/health/healthy-living/selfcare/.