Healthy habits: Dr. Ramsey Markus finds ways to stay active with family

healthy-habits-markusIt can sometimes be difficult to find ways to stay healthy, so we’ve asked members of our Baylor College of Medicine community to share what they do in their daily lives to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Dr. Ramsey Markus, associate professor of dermatology, tells us how he maintains a healthy lifestyle.

Q: What healthy decisions start your day?
A: Getting at least 7 hours of sleep and waking up at the same time is really important for me to be alert and ready for the day.

Q: What is your go-to healthy breakfast?
A: I always try to eat a nutritious breakfast with water, multigrain bread accompanied by a scrambled egg, cheese or baba ghanoush. Delicious!

Q: What is your favorite type of exercise?
A: I love to play basketball with my 11-year-old son but really anything that keeps me active is fine by me. I also like to golf so when it’s not hot I’ll skip the electric cart and wear comfortable shoes. Walking the course while playing golf is surprisingly tough when you are a bogey (or more) golfer.

Q: What keeps you motivated during your workout?
A: Simply running or lifting is boring to me – I have to stay entertained. Watching a basketball game or show while on an elliptical can make time fly by. A super fun thing my kids and I did was a workout with light weights – lots of reps along with push-ups – while watching American Ninja Warrior.

Q: What activities do you do when you can’t fit in a full workout?
A: At work I’ll sometimes climb the six floors of the office building with my medical assistant Alma or other physicians. It’s never bad to sneak in a little activity. I often don’t spend much time trying to find the closest parking spot figuring a few extra steps are good for me.

Q: What is your favorite healthy snack?
A: Homemade trail mix. I buy Costco sized bag of cashews and raisins then add whatever else I want (M&M’s, chocolate covered blueberries, pistachios, granola).

Q: Do you take vitamins and if so, which ones?
A: I’m not a big fan of vitamins. I don’t personally think they do much and some can even be harmful. In addition they are so poorly regulated that it’s hard to know if they actually have what you think they have in them.

Q: What do you include in your child’s lunch?
A: A sandwich plus sides. It’s hard to make the sides super nutritious because my kids won’t eat them if it seems too healthy.

Q: How do you make an unhealthy recipe healthy?
A: We do try to cook a lot at the Markus household (which is half of the battle). I avoid artificial things like margarine and non-sugar sweeteners. I think it’s much better to use olive oil, butter and sugar instead of the substitutes, which are likely much worse for the health in my opinion.

Q: What is your nighttime skincare regimen?
A: As a guy, I feel lucky not to have to worry about removing makeup so I do nothing for the skin before going to bed. The best thing I do for my skin each day is putting sunblock on EVERY SINGLE MORNING whether I am going to be mostly inside or not. This makes a big difference in the prevention of wrinkles, discolorations and skin cancer.

Q: What hobbies do you have to help you relax?
A: I really work at getting better at golf but don’t ever take it too seriously. At worst it’s a nature hike….

Q: What is your go-to Houston restaurant for a healthy meal?
A: I’m not really sure how healthy it is but I do like the Cobb salad at Chick-Fil-a with the Avocado Lime Ranch dressing. My family loves the Sushi Choo-Choo on San Felipe.

Q: Do you use a pedometer or Fitbit and what is your daily step goal?
A: I wear my Fitbit every day and I try to reach 10,000 daily but it’s really hard!

Q: What is your favorite health tip that you live by?
A: The first step is always the hardest so I’ll make myself just get up and active and the rest is pretty easy.

Additional Resources

Dr. Julina Ongkasuwan say healthy habits mean limiting sugar, junk food

Healthy Habits: Eating right, exercise key for Dr. Kent Osborne

See how Baylor stays fit with more healthy habits from members of our community

See how Baylor promotes a culture of healthy living and wellness

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