Altru’s Twelve Days of Health

“On the first day of Christmas, my doctor sent to me…” In honor of the well-known carol, Twelve Days of Christmas, we here at Altru have created our own rendition of the familiar song: Twelve Days of Health. As the festive tune goes, we too will begin with one item essential to your health.

1 Colonoscopy
 Due to advancements in detection and treatment, colorectal cancer death rate has been dropping for more than 20 years. When detected early, it’s treatable. If you’re over 50, give yourself the gift of prevention. Schedule a colonoscopy >>

Men: No More Than 2 Alcoholic Drinks Per Day
Alcohol is often at the scene of holiday parties. If you choose to drink, do so only in moderation. For healthy adults, that means up to one drink per day for women and up to two per day for men (under age 65). Learn more from Mayo Clinic >>

3 Weeks to Make or Change a Habit
Did you know it takes three weeks to make or change a habit? Food for thought: If you started your New Year’s resolution now, it would feel natural to your daily rhythm by January 1. What’s one habit you’d really like to make or change?

4 to 5.6% is the Normal Range for Hemoglobin A1c Levels
For people without diabetes, the normal range for the hemoglobin A1c test is between 4 and 5.6 percent. The test provides an average of your blood sugar control over the past two to three months. Someone who’s had uncontrolled diabetes for a long time may have an A1c level above 8 percent. Learn why it’s important to take care of diabetes >>

5 Workouts Per Week of at Least 30 Minutes
For optimal health, try and get 150 minutes of moderate physical activity per week. This could mean five 30-minute workouts, or whatever fits into your life. For more health benefits, add regular strength training into your routine >>

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6 Ounces of Protein Per Day is the Recommended Amount Per Person
The USDA recommends that all men and women over age 19 should get at least 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day. A few examples of protein-rich picks include: Greek yogurt, eggs, milk, beans, peanut butter, edamame, chicken and fish.

Eat 7 servings of fruits and vegetables per day
In the season of endless cookie and lefse platters, be the person who offers to bring a fruit or veggie tray instead. Aim for seven servings of fruits and vegetables per day to give your body the nutrients it needs to stay fit and ward off illness.

8 hours of sleep every night
Sleep is essential to good health, and most adults need between seven and nine hours every night. Small changes, like switching your bedtime routine, can make a big difference. Learn more about healthy sleep >>

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9 weeks (on average) to go from couch potato to 5K runner
Dreaming of running a 5K this spring? The average couch to 5K program takes about nine weeks. Start slowly today and build up your endurance over time. Be sure to avoid joint pain with these tips >>

10 thousand steps taken every day helps promote a healthy heart
If you’re not already hitting the gym regularly, start small by going for short walks throughout the day. Aim for 10,000 steps per day. Sitting at a desk all day? Every hour, take a quick stroll down the hall for water or a bathroom break.

11 ounces is the average size of human heart
Unlike the Grinch whose heart grew three times its size, healthy hearts grow proportionately with our bodies. The average female heart is about 8-10 ounces, while the male heart is about 10-12. Some conditions, such as high blood pressure, abnormal valves, an old heart attack or diseases affecting the heart muscle itself, can enlarge the heart. Our goal is to help you lead a heart-healthy, enjoyable life >>

12 Days of Health Infographic12 months in a year to practice healthy habits every day
While the 12 days of health comes to a close, we have 12 months every year to put healthy habits into practice. Get tips + insight from local experts at Altru Health System year-round >>

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