How your New Year’s Resolutions could be benefiting your urology health

08 January 2019, Sayara Muthuveloe 
As we begin 2019 many of us will choose to make a healthy New Year’s resolution. Maybe we’re looking to cut something out of our diet for a month or want to make a sustained lifestyle change. Whatever it is, the benefits seen can have a positive effect on your urology health now and in the years to come.

Joining the #fitfam

The resolution that tops the polls every year is getting fit and losing the festive flab. Dusting off your trainers to hit the gym or eating healthier is not only good for your waistline and your blood pressure but it could reduce your chances of aggressive prostate cancer, kidney cancer, kidney stones and incontinence.

As well as preventing diseases, a recent TUF study found post-op prostate cancer patients who undertook a progressive resistance exercise programme to improve their cardiovascular health saw a reduction in their treatment side effects, such as loss of muscle strength, erectile dysfunction, increased blood pressure and depression.

Going paleo, plant based, intermittent fasting or to a slimming club

There are lots of diet trends or quick fixes out there and it can seem a mind field when wanting to lose weight or increase muscle mass. But by following a well-balanced diet, limiting the amount of processed sugars and saturated fats, and keeping well hydrated, you will reduce your chances of kidney stones, urological cancers, urinary tract infections and infertility.

One common trend in recent years is the increase intake of protein, especially when combined with regular training. But there is evidence to suggest that, in the long term, having too much protein can cause or exacerbate kidney problems. So, ensure that you eat the right amount of protein for your body size and level of activity while choosing healthy, natural protein sources.

Stubbing out the cigarettes

Giving up smoking is a resolution many smokers give themselves and the numerous health benefits to being a non-smoker are well known. Half of all long-term smokers die early from smoking-related diseases and these include kidney and bladder cancer. In fact, smoking is the number one cause for these urological cancers and stopping could help reduce your chances of the disease in the future.

Smoking is also associated with erectile dysfunction as it damages your blood vessels reducing blood supply to the penis. For younger men with ED smoking is a very like cause.

Knocking the nightcap on the head

Dry January or making a conscious effect in reducing your consumption of alcohol will have far reaching benefits to your health. Excessive consumption of alcohol is a common cause of kidney cancer, incontinence and of problems with male fertility.

Swapping the booze for water, herbal teas, vegetable juices and coconut water will not only help keep you well hydrated but will reduce your chances of a UTI or kidney stones. Plus, those that have ditched their nightcap often find their sleep improves and feel better for it the following day. That’s a winning side effect in our book!

The TUF Top Tips to keeping resolutions

You’ve made your resolutions but what’s the best way to sticking them? Psychologists have found that if we have a clear goal in mind, or our reason why, we are more likely to achieve them and keep up the habit. Here are our TUF Top Tips when it comes to keeping resolutions.

  1. Channel your energy into achieving one resolution or changing one aspect of your life.
  2. Take some time to think about what might be the hurdles you’ll face to reach your goal, and think about coping strategies to help you jump those hurdles whenever you encounter them.
  3. Break your goal down to manageable to bitesize chunks with intermediate goals so you can see how well you’re doing.
  4. Find your support network of friends and family. Tell them your resolution so they can help support you along the way and pick you up when you’re struggling.
  5. Remind yourself regularly why you’re doing this and reward yourself with a non-sabotaging treat as you progress.

Reinvigorate your resolutions

On the approach to the end of January, the Christmas excess can be a distant memory and our motivation to keep our resolutions may have begun to fade. So, this February The Urology Foundation is launching our very first ‘Free From’ month to help reinvigorate resolutions and raise money. Sign-up to our Free From February challenge today.


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