2 BOCNEWS.com NOVEMBER 2017 "Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God." — I Corinthians 10:31 We all know that our time is limited in our living, and our stay on this world. We know also that we are prone on this sin-cursed planet, to have ill- ness and at times chronic illnesses. All we can say is that "For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travileth in pain together until now. " (Romans 8:22) It will not always be like this, and our redemption will bring suffering and pain to a wonderful end. We still should not look at sickness, pain and chronic disease as an inevi- table part of or existence. There are things we can do to avoid some unnec- essary pain and suffering. Yes our genetics can play a significant role in our state of health. However our per- sonal choices, and our decisions can play a significant role in our longevity and in avoiding things we don't have to experience. Just think about the experience you might have when you visit a medical practitioner's office. First you will have your blood pressure, temperature, and height and weight done by the medical assistant. Then you will see your medi- cal provider. He or she will eventually get around to asking you if you smoke, if you drink alcohol, and how much. They may ask if you are exercising, and may comment on other habits. Then there will be a discussion about any discomfort or concerns you might have. You will be given some advice about things you need to do, and per- haps a prescription for medications. One thing we need to realize that our life style, that is the habits we pursue, or at time we are advised to change can determine to a large degree our state of health. It is not always easy to do this as we become accustomed to our habits and choices, even if they may make us sick at times. At times it may take many years before the choices we make bear fruit in the form of illness suffering, and even premature death. Let me make some suggestions from some reading and studying I have done. These sug- gestions come from looking at the lives of people on our planet who live the heathiest and longest lives of anyone. ■ ■ Eat more of a plant based diet, with smaller amounts of dairy, fish and especially red meat ■ ■ Eat little processed or "fast foods" ■ ■ Drink six to eight glasses of water daily. This may push diet sodas, fruit juices and other artificially sweetened beverages out of the diet. ■ ■ Do not smoke at all! ■ ■ Maintain a healthy body weight. Here is a thought: For women keep your waist circumference less than 35 inches and men less than 40 inches. Your medical provider can guide you further as to goals for a healthy weight. Do regular physical activity: try at first at least 30 minutes of walking for exercise daily. You can do more! You can join a gym, or a YMCA to help. Remember things like weigh lifting and swimming are invaluable. Go to church and enjoy the fellow- ship! Make friends at church and I have read that such fellowship has helped people to live 10 years longer! Enjoy meals with family and friends. Eat a small handful of nuts without salt of sugar coating as this may help your blood pressure and cholesterol. Get guidance as needed from a dieti- cian if possible. Pray daily and "without ceasing". We can pray for guidance and comfort and this can help to relieve our stress. If you have to monitor health param- eters at home such as your blood sugar or blood pressure-do this as instructed by your medical provider Take medication as directed and if having side effects--please call your doctor and don't just stop taking your medication! This may be risky. A healthy list of foods include: squash, greens, tomatoes, avocado, bananas, black beans, black-eyed peas, whole grain bread, brown rice, oatmeal, almonds, all nuts, olive oil, tofu and salmon, among other healthy foods. Again a dietician can help with food choices. I would like to see people live a healthy lifestyle to help prevent and control chronic diseases such as strokes, heart attacks, some cancers, diabetes and overweight/obesity. Work with your medical provider to live better and longer! The Science of Living Longer Dr. Conner By Byron E. Conner, M.D. HEALTH