June 8, 2017

Healthy Couples – How to Support Your Mate in Fitness and Health

By Trisha McBride Ferguson

When it comes to nurturing a healthy relationship with your significant other, most advice in today’s news addresses supporting each other psychologically and sexually. But what about promoting your mate’s health and wellness? If you’re interested in improving your relationship long-term, start by working together toward a healthier lifestyle.

Encourage Each Other

Couples need to work together to support each other’s health, with each partner contributing equal attention and encouragement, said Jennifer Morales, MD, interventional physiatrist with Carolina Spine and Neurosurgery Center, an affiliate of Mission Health. “In order to promote a healthier lifestyle, it’s best that both make a commitment not only to themselves but to each other as well.”

Join Forces

The Department of Health and Human Services recommends individuals get a total of 150 minutes of moderate exercise or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise each week. Work together to make fitness a priority by joining the local gym together or by going for walks after work or following dinner, suggested Dr. Morales.

Incorporate Strength Training

“Strength training is often overlooked or not stressed enough,” said Dr. Morales. “This is very important, especially with the elderly population and postmenopausal women, as it helps to promote bone health, which reduces the risk of osteoporosis.”

Plan to Eat Healthy

Take control of your diet by planning nutritious meals together. “It’s easy after a long day to get takeout or fast food, but take the time to plan meals in advance,” advised Dr. Morales. “This can also help free up time during the workweek to do other activities.”

Bring Your Lunch

Eating lunch together can help you avoid unhealthy food choices and stick to your health goals. “I think one of the most important things you can do is bring your lunch to work,” said Dr. Morales. “Cafeteria or fast food is often high in calories, fat and sugar. If you take the time to make and bring your own lunch, you will be less prone to taking in empty calories.”


Jennifer Morales, MD, is an interventional physiatrist with Carolina Spine and Neurosurgery Center, an affiliate of Mission Health. 

To learn more about the Carolina Spine and Neurosurgery Center, call (828) 255-7776 or visit mission-health.org/spine.

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