Thursday, 15 March 2018

Healthy Living Practices & Choices

What can you do to protect and improve your own health?

Take care of yourself NOW!

Self-care practices and general lifestyle changes can help manage the symptoms of many physical and mental health problems, and may also help to prevent some problems from developing or getting worse.
Self-care is about identifying your own needs and taking the steps to meet them.
Self-care is taking the time to do activities that nurture you.
Self-care is about taking proper care of YOU.
Gradual changes in your lifestyle are easier to maintain than major changes introduced all at once.
Seek medical advice early. Illnesses such as diabetes or obesity can be difficult to deal with. Seeking help from a health professional can make a big difference
Setting goals is an important part of being healthy. Measuring how you are doing is a way to check for improvement. Even small goals can be effective, such as walking for 10 minutes every day. 
Start your self-care journey today!

Contact us to find trusted information and good signposting.
Help and support

Diversity Living Services
Artzone, 1st Floor, 54-56 The Market Square, Edmonton Green, London N9 0TZ
Tel: 0208 803 6161  Email:

Healthy Living Practices and Choices

Eat healthy

Eat a variety of foods that have the nutrients you need to stay healthy, feel good, and have more energy. These nutrients include fruit and vegetables; starchy carbohydrates; beans, pulses, fish, eggs, meat and other proteins; dairy and alternatives; and oils and spreads.

Nutrition combined with physical activity is an excellent way to stay strong and healthy.
For a healthy diet it is advised to eat little or no meat and raw foods (fruit and vegetables). Raw food gives the body lots of vitamins and minerals that protect it from diseases.

A balanced food choice over time will make a difference! Current recommendations in the UK are to eat at least five portions of different fruit and vegetables each day.

Drink more water

At least 1.5 litres to 2 litres (OR 8-10 glasses of 200ml) per day

Water is essential for our bodies to function.  Over 60% of our body is made up of water.

Water is needed to carry out body functions, remove waste, and carry nutrients and oxygen around our body.

Water is the best source: tap water, mineral water, sparkling or non-sparkling, plain or flavoured. (Fruit juices, tea, soft drinks, milk and other drinks, can all be okay - from time to time.)

How do you know if you are dehydrated? Symptoms include headache, fatigue and irritability, poor concentration levels, mental confusion, loss of appetite, dizziness, nausea, constipation, dark-coloured urine.

Avoid or minimize alcohol

Keep an eye on the amount of alcohol you drink.

Men and women should drink no more than 14 units of alcohol per week, no more than three units in any one day and have at least two alcohol-free days a week.

Pregnant women should not drink at all.

One unit of alcohol is equal to a half pint of beer or two thirds of a glass of wine or one measure of spirits. Some bottles and cans will have the number of units of alcohol printed on the label.

Watch your weight

Extra weight can cause problems that can put strain on the heart, raise blood pressure, and significantly increase your risk of a heart attack.

Being overweight increases the risks of a wide range of diseases including diabetes, heart diseases, and some types of cancer.

A healthy diet can also stop you gaining weight (excess body fat comes from eating more than we need). Start by reducing sugar and cutting back on fat.

Being more active is an effective way to manage your weight. Regular physical activity promotes weight loss and it can help improve blood glucose, blood pressure and blood cholesterol levels.

Get regular exercise, make it a habit!

Regular physical activity and exercise is a major contributor to a healthy lifestyle.
Physical activity is important for people of all weight ranges and health conditions. It helps burn calories, it is good for the heart and circulatory system, and it maintains/increases muscle mass, improves focus, and improves overall health wellbeing.

It can reduce your risk of major illnesses, such as heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and cancer by up to 50% and lower your risk of early death by up to 30%.

To gain the most benefit, you should do up to 150 minutes (2.5 hours) of moderate intensity exercise per week AND activities to improve muscle strength at least 2 times per week.

Minimise sedentary behaviour (eg. sitting for long periods).

Smoking is detrimental to your health and affects your heart, lungs, healing, and immune system.

Smoking is proven to increase the risks of all cancers.

No matter how long you’ve smoked for, quitting helps improve your health straight away.

If you need advice or help quitting smoking please talk to your GP or us.

Go for regular GP check-ups including cancer screenings

Many diseases do not show up in terms of symptoms until it is too late. Blood tests for blood sugar, vitamins and minerals, along with urine tests are standard tests you can take.

Tests like mammograms (for women), PAP smears (for women), prostate checks (for men), colonoscopy, etc. should be done at the recommended intervals.

Regular checkups and cancer screenings are vital, especially if you or your family are predisposed to certain medical conditions.

Wondering about which screenings and immunizations you need? Please ask your GP or us.

Reduce salt and sugar intake

A high salt intake can result in high blood pressure and increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Salt can be reduced in the following way:
When shopping, choose products with lower sodium content. When cooking, substitute salt with spices.

When eating, try not to have salt at the table, or at least not to add salt before tasting.
Sugar provides sweetness and an attractive taste but it is best enjoyed in moderation.

Fruits can be used, instead of sugar, to sweeten foods and drinks.

 Attempt to reduce your sugar intake each week.
Always read the nutrition labels carefully!

Get enough sleep daily

Healthy living involves more than physical health, it also includes emotional and mental health.

Sleep can help reduce stress and improve your memory.

Sleep also boosts immunity, helps with weight loss, can reduce your chances of diabetes, and lowers your blood pressure.

Sleep has the ability to increase mental and physical energy, and enough levels of sleep (about eight hours a night) are linked with reduced risk of chronic disease and improved longevity.

Supplement your diet

Even with a healthy diet, there will be times when we lack certain vitamins/minerals.

Foods with certain vitamins/minerals may not be common in your diet. Understand the gaps in your diet (health checkups will let you know if you are deficient) and always try to address them via your diet, first.

Always speak to your GP before taking any dietary supplements.

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Our Vision and Services

Our vision is of a society where no one should experience discrimination on the grounds of their mental health.

Mental health problems are extremely common across society, with one in four of us experiencing them in any year. Despite being so common, people from all communities will still experience discriminatory attitudes and behaviours that can prevent people from speaking out, seeking support and playing full and active roles in our communities. The impact of mental health stigma and discrimination will vary between communities as mental health has a cultural context that affects the way communities talk about the subject and engage with people who have mental health problems. In some cultures depression, for example, doesn't exist and in others an experience of a mental health problem can be attached to a sense of shame.

For the African and Caribbean communities a key issue is the overrepresentation of young African and Caribbean men in mental health services. Misconceptions and stereotypes have led to a perception that this group is more likely to pose a risk of violent behaviour and, as a result, they are more likely to be treated as inpatients and sectioned when compared to other groups. It is well documented that this has led to a fear of talking about mental health issues more openly and a fear of using mental health services. Research by the Race Equality Foundation (2011) also highlighted fears that discrimination against Black & Minority Ethnic (BME) communities and migrant service users will increase in the austerity climate and whilst commissioning arrangements change.

Our Services

· Provide information, advice, advocacy

· Represent diversity communities in Health Care services, policies and strategies

· Organise training in health and social care in collaboration with local colleges

· Provide human resources ( including interpreters) who are suitable to the diversity communities especially to break language and cultural barriers

· Provides domiciliary care and support

· Provide services such specialised support for people with mental health needs, including people who suffer from short-term memory problems, Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease.

· Provide visits to elderly people and help them with outings and home services

· Participate in local authority and NHS consultations , research events and programmes to voice the needs of diversity communities.

· Increase access to services and rights for disadvantaged people and the most vulnerable of our society

· Help and support unemployed people to look for work, including training and job preparation

· Provide legal advice in a range of issues from on Immigration and Asylum , welfare benefits, housing, health, education, community care, and training, employment, etc.

· Provide advice and guidance, information and practical help so that our service users can access opportunities they are entitled to

· Organise training and other community learning opportunities that provide new skills, increase confidence and motivation

· Support our service users to overcome barriers to learning, employment and training

· Provide support for young people with their education, training, confidence building, employment and social needs.

Objectives of our Diversity Living Programme:

· To promote the inclusion and participation of diversity communities* in integrated care.

· To inform policy, locally and nationally, and assisting in the formulation of effective policies, strategies and good practices in integrated care in order to contribute to improved health outcomes for the people from the diversity communities (e.g. Black and minority ethnic communities) and to ensure health services are able to meet their specific needs.

· To improve the quality of life for diversity people with disability, mental health problems and their families and carers through integrated care by providing inclusive advocacy and information.

· To provide service that enable diversity groups and individuals with disability /elderly and their carers to make the right choice for themselves and have an influence on decisions made about their future.

· To promote the rights of diversity people with disability, their families and carers and make sure their rights are safe and protected.

· To promoting access to information regarding healthcare issues and to raise awareness of the needs of diversity disabled children, young people, older people and their families.

· To promote the rights of older and disabled diversity people, helping them overcome and enable them to participate in decisions about their future

· To provide support and information to those suffering the isolation and loneliness that can be associated with disability and old age

· To fight against mental health stigma in refugee, black and minority ethnic communities and ensure no one should experience discrimination on the grounds of their mental health or disability.

*Diversity communities are older people, disabled people, Black, Asian, refugees, migrants, asylum seekers and other ethnic minorities.