Developing a healthy lifestyle

We understand that everyone has different needs. We want to work with you to help you reach your health goals.

That's why Aetna Better Health offers information to help you stay healthy. We are focused on making sure you get the health care you need and we want you to feel empowered to manage your own health.

Healthy living is for everyone. Parents can take many actions to protect their family’s health and safety. Infants and toddlers who grow up in safe and loving families tend to become healthy teens and adults. Learn more about our Healthy Living lifestyle tools – our way to help you take good care of your health.

Quitting smoking is not easy, but you can do it. To have the best chance of quitting (for good), you need to know what you’re up against, what your options are and where to go for help.

The EX plan
The EX plan is a free quit smoking program, one that can show you a whole new way to think about quitting. The EX plan helps you see quitting not as one big war, but as a number of little battles you can actually win. And the secret to winning these battles is re-learning your life without cigarettes.

You can also find additional support and resources through the American Cancer Society’s Guide to Quitting Smoking.

What's on your plate?
A healthy diet combines fewer calories with more nutrition. You can get both with a diet that:

  • Has mostly fruits, vegetables, whole grains and low-fat or nonfat dairy products
  • Includes lean meats, fish, eggs, beans and nuts
  • Limits unhealthy fats, cholesterol, salt and added sugars

Try keeping a record of everything you eat. It may help you spot problems in your diet. Find out how your diet can shape your health at You can also learn how to eat better on a budget with Choose My Plate, brought to you by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Finally, check out our nutrition and exercise flyer for more tips to stay healthy.

The joy of cooking - with your kids
Kids in the kitchen. That sounds like a recipe for disaster. But cooking with your kids can be fun. And because kids like to eat the things they make, they may say yum instead of yuck to healthy foods.

Here are some tips on how to turn preparing meals into a family fun night:

  • Make hand washing the first step
  • Never leave your kids alone in the kitchen
  • Take time to talk about each step
  • Try not to worry about spills or mistakes
  • Cook with different kinds of foods
  • Look for ways to teach safe food handling

Also, give your child age-appropriate things to do. Toddlers can carry spoons, bowls or ingredients from one place to another. They can also tear up greens for salad, mix ingredients or help rinse fruits and vegetables. Older kids can crack and egg and measure ingredients. And kids of all ages can help the table. After the meal, show kids that everyone should help clean up.

The cooking skills and confidence you give your kids now can last a lifetime. And that gives them a head start toward better health.

Manage your weight the right way
If you want to lose or maintain your weight, a long-term plan for healthy eating and exercising is best. Exercise is good for you in so many ways. It helps you manage your weight by burning calories. It also:

  • Lowers your risk for heart disease, diabetes and other long-term health problems
  • Makes your lungs and muscles stronger
  • Helps you sleep better

Try to exercise 30-60 minutes each day. Also, talk with your doctor before starting a new exercise program.

Time to get active
To help get started, check out the physical activity guidelines for your age group. You can view exercise videos on proper form and other tips.

First aid is the first basic treatment for someone who  is injured or ill. The situation will determine the type of treatment necessary to help that person. If it is a life-threatening emergency, call 9-1-1. These resources can help you perform basic first aid while waiting for help to arrive. Here are some first aid techniques you can use if someone is experiencing the following:

Helpful web resources:

Find a local CPR, First Aid or ECC (Emergency Cardiovascular Care) class.

MedlinePlus is the National Institutes of Health's Web site for patients and their families and friends. Produced by the National Library of Medicine, it brings you information about diseases, conditions, and wellness issues in language you can understand. MedlinePlus offers reliable, up-to-date health information, anytime, anywhere for free.

You can use MedlinePlus to learn about the latest treatments, look up information on a drug or supplement, find out the meanings of words, or view medical videos or illustrations.

You can also get links to the latest medical research on your topic or find out about clinical trials on a disease or condition.

Krames is an online resource available to help you find accurate information on more than 4,000 topics relating to health and medications.