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Why You Should Create a Family Health Tree

When it comes to maintaining your health, one of the most important things you can do for yourself is to know about your family's health history. This will not only allow you to understand why you may currently be experiencing certain health issues, but it can also serve to help you identify any patterns or trends that may be occurring in your family, so you can gain the ability to take action and prevent a potential illness or disease.

I have been fortunate enough to be able to talk to many of my relatives about their health and any difficulties they may have experienced with their wellness at any point in their lives. I found some great tips and advice on gathering and compiling information to create an accurate family health tree from an article that was written up at Everyday Health. Here are some of the best tips that I learned from this article. 

When you sit down to start your family health tree, see how many health conditions you already know about. Ask yourself if any one of your immediate relatives has experienced any of the following diseases or health conditions and ailments: heart disease, diabetes, obesity, any kind of cancer, metabolic syndrome, high blood pressure, etc. From here, ask yourself about the outcome of these diagnoses. Did any family members end up dying from these diseases or health conditions? Do you know if these conditions were passed on to other relatives later on down the line? It will also really benefit you a lot to understand the environmental factors and the living conditions that the relative was in at the time of diagnosis and death. Maybe they ended up being near an area that was used for nuclear testing in the mid twentieth century, or maybe there was a lot of smog and industrial urban pollution in their city.

It would also help to take a look at the habits of your relatives. Did those relatives that ended up with significant diseases or conditions, or that even ended up dying from these ailments, participate in unhealthy habits such as smoking, drinking in excess, or not getting enough sleep each and every night? Did these relatives exercise and follow a nutritious and balanced dietary plan, or did they not move around much but rather sat and ate unhealthy processed foods and snacks instead? As you get the answers to these questions, you will be able to learn more about your own health.

Used under Creative Commons Licensing courtesy of Robert Linsdell

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