Spending too much time on the couch is bad for health. (Photo: Pexels)

A diet high in fat, spending too much time on the couch with little or no exercise, lounging in the sun without protection are some things you know are bad for your health. There are other things however, that can increase your risk of health problems as well.

Being overweight

A US research has found that you are more likely to gain kilos if your friends are heavier. Having an obese friend means you have a 57 per cent chance of gaining weight, too – even if that friend doesn’t live anywhere near you.

What can you do: Instead of catching up for coffee or dinner, do something active – go for a walk, play tennis or go for a bike ride.

Ovarian cancer

A study of 22,581 women found that women with A, B or AB blood groups had a 40 to 60 per cent increased risk of having ovarian cancer.

What can you do: Stop smoking, and eat a healthy diet and maintain a healthy weight. Check persistent symptoms such as abdominal or pelvic pain, bloating, needing to urinate often or urgently, and feeling full after eating a small amount.

Your fertility

Women with blood group O may find it harder to have a baby, a US study has found. The research measured women’s levels of follicle stimulating hormone (FSH), which indicates the quality and quantity of a woman’s eggs. An FSH reading over 10 suggests deteriorating egg numbers and quality, explains Dr Edward Nejat from Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York and Yale University.

What can you do: After six months of trying for a baby, it’s good to have some basic investigations, say experts. Manage a healthy weight as obese women are 43 per cent less likely to become pregnant than healthy weight women, says a Dutch study.

Heart attack

You could be less likely to have a heart attack if you are blood group O. A US study of 20,000 people found those with a gene called ADAMTS7 are at greater risk of heart attack – but not if they’re blood group O.

What can you do: Not smoking is top of the list. It is also good to have your blood pressure and cholesterol level checked. An active lifestyle is also essential.


The pace of life today is highly stressful. The competition, work, family, peer pressure – all these can increase the risk of depression and anxiety.

What can you do: Make regular green exercise part of life. UK research found that spending five minutes in a green space, such as a park, lifts mood. Two out of three people in the study felt less depressed after exercising in a green space.

Text: Good Health, Bauer / Additional Reporting: Shenielle Aloysis