This year, empower yourself to better health

Performance Triad
Quality nutrition can serve as a key component in promoting health, preventing disease, and achieving or maintaining a healthy body weight.
By Carrie Kilby & Esther Dada
U.S. Army Public Health Command

There are many things people don’t have control over when it comes to health care, such as the number of specialty doctors in a particular region, out-of-pocket expenses, proximity of medical treatment facilities, amount of time it takes to see a healthcare provider, and more.

Luckily, health is more than just good health care. It’s about the decisions and choices people make every day. Most health decisions do not happen in the doctor’s office or hospital. Instead, they are made when people are at work or at home with their families. It is in this “life space” where the daily choices people make impact their health.

To make this year “your year” for empowering yourself, know that each day you can make a difference in your quality of life.

No matter who you are, how old you are or what you do, you need a balance of sleep, activity and nutrition to build and sustain great health.

This triad of sleep, activity and nutrition was initiated by the Army surgeon general in 2012 and is called the Performance Triad. In the spring and summer of 2014, installations Army-wide will deploy the Army Family Performance Triad Campaign. The campaign aims to bring Soldiers and retirees, their families and civilians the tools and resources needed to make better sleep, activity and nutrition choices to improve their health and performance.

To kick-start your own healthy habits, Army Medicine experts in sleep, activity and nutrition have provided some daily targets to start impacting performance and health. These daily targets for adults are:

•Get at least seven to eight hours of sleep each night.

•Remove all electronics from your bedroom.

•Take 10,000 steps during your everyday routine. Consider getting a pedometer, using your smart phone or using a personal fitness device to track your steps each day.

•Get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity and two days of muscle-strengthening activity per week.

•Build your plate with whole grains, lean proteins, fruits, vegetables and low-fat dairy at each meal.

•Make half your plate a variety of brightly colored fruits and vegetables.

•Refuel every four to five waking hours; don’t skip meals.

•Make water your first choice for hydration.

If you don’t know where to start, have an injury, or would like additional one-on-one support no matter your current fitness level, contact your primary care manager or visit the Army Wellness Center.

So, here’s to a new year and a healthier you. You have the power to improve sleep, activity and nutrition and maintain or take back control of your health and future.

The Stuttgart Army Wellness Center is located in Building 2337, Patch Barracks, and offers blood pressure screening and education, Healthy Heart classes, Civilian Fitness Program, Core Four Weight Management, fitness assessments, nutritional counseling, meditation education classes, menopause education classes, tobacco cessation, unit briefings (upon request), metabolic testing (appointment only), and VO2 Max testing (appointment only). Free massage chair sessions are also available. The center is open Monday to Thursday from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Friday from 7:30 a.m. to noon.

For more information, call 430-4073/0711-680-4073.

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