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Make 2022 a year of good health

By Veita Bland, M.D. / December 30, 2021

Value your health. Relaxation is key to good health.

Well, we made it. To say it was different is an understatement. 2021 has been difficult on so many different levels. What did you learn and how will you use the past challenges to flavor your new year?

You learned that you were resilient and adaptive. Two qualities that will serve you well whatever the future will bring. Take the time, unpack those qualities, and see how much they can aid your life in so many situations.

It helps when you spend time in reflection to analyze how one may have managed a situation in a more productive way. In a way, such reflective moments may help provide a more productive outcome for you.

As we go forward, there are a few words I want you to remember in the coming year.

VALUE your HEALTH. So many people take their health for granted. Health is made up of several parts. We all know that it is important to eat properly. Though we all may have gotten off the train during the holidays, it is important that we get back on that train for good health. More and more studies have shown that diets that have a lot of sugar and that are high in carbohydrates are not your best friends in the long run.

Make sure that you include veggies and fruits daily. Four to five of each are recommended daily. Limit your intake of fried foods, especially trans fats. They are inflammatory and will not do your body good.

Drink adequate fluids every day. Ditch the sodas, especially if sweetened with sugar and the diet soda when artificial sweeteners are used. Watch the juices, sweet teas, and lemon aides. Use natural, low-calorie sweeteners and waters.

Try to eat as close to the farm as possible. Stay away from processed foods and the addition of anything unnatural.

EXERCISE on a regular basis. There are so many safe ways to do this. Walking is great exercise. Strength training is a needed exercise to maintain muscles and strength, especially as we age. It is recommended that we exercise for a minimum of 30 minutes, five days a week. More than that can only be good for you. Even if you are chair ridden or just beginning, you can go online to YouTube and participate in chair exercises that are fun and will improve your health.

SLEEP is a basic necessity that is undervalued by many individuals. Sleep is when your body heals and repairs itself. It is a must for a healthy body and mind. Partake in it daily. Guard those hours for they will repay you in health.

RELAXATION is a term so many people do not think about. It is the state of being free of tension and anxiety. It is important for health that you build time in your day to be free. Many will say there is no time for such but building a five or ten minute stretch for that will soon prove invaluable. Meditation, yoga, and other forms of relaxation have been practiced for hundreds of years. Studies have shown how invaluable they are for the brain and attitudes of life.

RELATIONSHIPS are a pivotal part of life. We all need people in our lives. The key is to make sure they are healthy relationships that feed the soul and not drain the soul. Toxic relationships are detrimental to health and should be avoided.

Think about these WORDS. Add or enrich as many of these WORDS into your life as we ring in 2022. Also, remember that we live by example and there is no better way to influence young people in your life than by setting a positive example. Happy 2022 to all.

Dr. Veita Bland is a board-certified Greensboro physician and hypertension specialist. Dr. Bland’s radio show, “It’s a Matter of Your Health,” can be heard live on Wednesdays, 5:30 p.m. on N.C. A&T State University’s WNAA, 90.1 FM. Listeners may call in and ask questions. The show is replayed on Sirius 142 at 5 p.m. on Wed. Email Dr. Bland at


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Since 1967, the Carolina Peacemaker has served as North Carolina’s leading news weekly with a national reputation. Founded by Dr. John Kilimanjaro, the newspaper is published by Carolina Newspaper, Inc.

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