Healthy Eating – Ali Sheybani, MD

Healthy Eating – Ali Sheybani, MD


People are living longer than ever in the
United States and healthy aging is a very hot topic for baby boomers everywhere. We
spoke with Dr. Ali Sheybani at Valley Presbyterian Hospital in the San Fernando Valley who talks
about the key to healthy aging. The key to healthy aging is healthy lifestyle
and there are a few things that we can advise to older adults to have a better and healthier
life as they’re agiing. One is, don’t smoke, eat a balanced diet. Keep your mind and body
active, get regular check-ups and practice safety habits. It’s never too late to make
a healthier lifestyle choice. What we usually advise to older adults to choose the foods
that has a lot of nutrients :like fruit and vegetables fat free or low fat milk which
is fortified with calcium and vitamin D. Use seafood lean meat, poultry or eggs, seeds,
nuts and whole wheat or whole grain. The foods that we don’t recommend for older adults,
the ones that has fewer nutrients and high calorie like white rice, pasta which is from
refined grain or white bread or sugar added to the dessert or drinks. By eating healthy
food you can prevent heart disease, stroke, Type 2 diabetes which is very common in the
community, anemia bone loss and some kinds of cancer. Exercise is very important, there
are some confusion about physical activity and exercise. Physical activity is just the
simple things as walking the dog or gardening or using the stairs, but exercise is structured,
planned, repetitive movements that you do and the combination both is very important.
You need to do some type of exercise or physical activity that increases you breathing and
increases your heart rate and there are a lot of studies that show that if you do less
than 10 minutes of any kind of exercise, it wouldn’t be a beneficial for your health.
It has to be at least 30 minutes of moderate intensity exercises, almost everyday and I
always recommend to do different types of exercises everyday. Like you can do endurance
exercise you can do strengthening exercies and you can do balance and flexibility exercises.
I had a patient, he was about 68 years old: smoking, obese, his body mass index was about
32 and he came to me, he had diabetes, Type 2 already and high blood pressure. After 6
months, he lost about 25 pounds by just eating healthy and low calorie diet and I guided
him for the physical activity and he start as little as 5 minutes at the beginning and
then added up gradually to the point that he was doing like 45 minutes of brisk walking
everyday plus weight training and bicycling and then after 6 months, his diabetes were
perfectly under control without medication. His blood pressure came back to normal levels
and he was feeling much healthier and happy inside and out. Remember to eat healthy and
include physical activity and exercise because it’s never to late to make healthier lifestyle
choices. For the American Health Journal, I’m Lora Windsor.