Smoking is the major preventable cause of ill health in our society. It is the major cause of heart disease, chronic bronchitis and circulation disease (which can lead to amputation of limbs). Smoking is one of the major causes of cancer. Apart from lung cancer, smoking is also implicated in causing cancer of the mouth, tongue, larynx, stomach, bladder and cervix. It also predisposes to peptic ulcers. Smoking is also very harmful in pregnancy, to both mother and unborn child. Babies born to mothers who smoke are likely to be of low birth weight or have other problems. Smoking is also harmful to those around you who are breathing in your smoke.
Every cigarette you smoke can shorten your life by an average of five and a half minutes.
Alcohol in excess is also harmful. For a man it is recommended that they consume no more than 21 units spread throughout the week and for women no more than 14 units. A unit is half a pint of beer, a small glass of wine or a single measure of spirits. There is no completely safe level of drinking, however sticking to the guidelines lowers your risk of harming your health. If you feel alcohol is playing a large part in your life you would be advised to speak with your GP.
Exercise is good for general, physical and mental wellbeing. if you do not exercise regularly you would be advised to begin with mild exercise building up intensity gradually. Further advice can be given by nurse or GP on request.
Diet and regular eating habits are important for general health. Three reasonably sized meals per day are all that would be advised. Diet should contain roughage (fruit, veg, cereal) and smaller amounts of carbohydrates, fat and protein. Fresh uncooked fruit and veg is a great source of vital minerals.
Further advice can be requested from nurse or GP.
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