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Health maintenance

Related Terms

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Background

  • Maintaining a healthy lifestyle through diet and exercise may help prevent certain diseases and enhance quality of life.
  • Antioxidants are the subject of increasing research because of the possible role they play in preventing disease. Antioxidants are molecules that work to prevent damage that occurs in cells and body tissues due to both normal bodily processes and exposure to some chemicals. The potential medical benefit of antioxidants may reside in their ability to prevent or slow the oxidation of molecules. However, there is some debate as to whether antioxidants have health benefits, as clinical trials have produced mixed results.
  • Research has recently focused on how antioxidant vitamins may reduce cardiovascular disease risk. In addition to being available in a variety of fruits and vegetables, antioxidants are available as supplements. Antioxidant vitamins, including vitamin E and C, and beta-carotene (a form of vitamin A), may have potential health benefits. According to the American Heart Association, approximately 30% of Americans are taking some form of antioxidant supplement.
  • Exercise is any form of physical activity that helps to promote overall health and decrease the risk of developing illnesses, such as heart disease. Most movement of the body is considered beneficial, as long as it is done in moderation and at the skill level of the person. There are many ways for people to exercise, including gardening, walking, sports activities, and dancing.
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Technique

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Theory/Evidence

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Integrative Therapies

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Safety

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Author Information

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References

Natural Standard developed the above evidence-based information based on a thorough systematic review of the available scientific articles. For comprehensive information about alternative and complementary therapies on the professional level, go to www.naturalstandard.com. Selected references are listed below.

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The information in this monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and is meant to help users better understand health concerns. Information is based on review of scientific research data, historical practice patterns, and clinical experience. This information should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. Users should consult with a qualified healthcare provider for specific questions regarding therapies, diagnosis and/or health conditions, prior to making therapeutic decisions.