4 Steps to Better Health in 6 Weeks
No Fads or Gimmicks Needed for Quick Health Upgrades
Step No. 4: Reap the Benefits
After six weeks, program participants had significant improvement in health knowledge, body fat, total steps per week, and most nutrition variables. Heart rate, total and LDL cholesterol, and blood pressure also improved.
The number of people with blood sugar levels that indicated diabetes dropped from 21 to 13. The percentage with high blood pressure also fell from 18.5% to 7.5%. Average total cholesterol fell by 12%.
That makes a big difference to heart health.
For every 1% drop in total cholesterol, the heart attack risk drops by 2%-3%. For every one point drop in elevated diastolic blood pressure -- the lower number -- there is another 2%-3% drop in heart attack risk, write the researchers.
Twice as many program participants ate five fruits and vegetables daily, and their pedometer-monitored movement increased by 30%.
People who had signed up for the program but were placed on a waiting list also had smaller but significant improvements in health knowledge, blood pressure, blood sugar, and some nutrition variables. Signing up for the program may have motivated them to make healthy changes, the researchers suggest.
There's nothing magical about the program, says Aldana, author of The Culprit and The Cure. "By making similar changes you can enjoy similar benefits," he says in the news release.
Check in with your doctor before making any major health changes.