Investing in your health makes perfect sense. If 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that neglecting our minds and bodies can store up serious issues, as we never know what’s around the corner! In fact, studies have shown that just five daily habits can add ten years to your life.
Creating a healthier lifestyle doesn’t necessarily mean an expensive gym membership that makes you feel guilty, a huge dietary overhaul or engaging the services of a personal trainer. It could simply involve a few basic changes to your daily habits that boost health brilliantly. So, what are the five daily habits for a healthier (and longer) life?
No list of small changes to improve your health would be complete without a reference to food. This is also the perfect example of how easy it is to boost your mental and physical condition, by amending some of your daily habits. For example, portion size! You might eat a balanced diet, but is it weighing down your plate?
What other food habits affect your long-term health? The most obvious ones are to cut down on how much fat, sugar and salt you eat. Opt for nuts, whole grains, and foods with polyunsaturated and omega-3 fatty acids. Also, ramp up the greens! It’s recommended you eat at least five veg and fruit portions each day, selecting from all colour groups to vary your nutrients. However, green vegetables are particularly power-packed with vitamins and minerals.
You notice the word is ‘movement’. Exercise can sound extreme when making simple changes to your daily habits to boost health. Basically, you benefit if you create opportunities for meaningful movement all through your waking hours. This could be walking more, climbing stairs, dancing to tunes while you prepare tea or even stretching out regularly. All these additional amounts of movement throughout the day help to tone and strengthen muscles, stimulate hormone production and generally make you feel more alert.
3. Stop smoking; reduce alcohol intake
If you’re introducing new daily habits to improve your health, top of your list should be seeking help with smoking cessation. There are many ways to stop smoking, leading to improvements in your respiratory and blood systems. In other words, it improves the processes that keep you alive! You even get fewer teeth stains as another benefit of giving up cigarettes, cigars and vaping.
Your relationship with alcohol also impacts on your health. Some people give it up entirely, but at the very least consider cutting back. Especially if it has become something you depend on to be socially confident, manage stress or to relax at the end of the day. Finding new ways to achieve those aims, and reducing the alcohol you drink, could bring considerable health improvements.
4. Make sleep and rest a priority
You may go to bed every night, but are you getting enough of the right kind of sleep? To protect our physical and mental health, adults need six to nine hours of proper slumber, and that number goes up for children and teenagers. Proper sleep involves a full cycle, that includes periods of REM (rapid eye movement) and non-REM sleep. Also, give yourself a break! Never feel guilty for taking time out to relax and breathe deeply during the day, preferable in the fresh air. Daily rest periods can be highly beneficial.
The last in our list of five daily habits for better health is highly achievable. Drink more water! Keeping your body properly hydrated brings abundant benefits. Not least as it washes away toxins in your digestive system and helps other physiological processes to run smoothly. Results could be improved skin, better weight management, fewer headaches and more energy. If you don’t like water, add in flavours such as mint, cucumber or lemon.
So, the five daily habits to improve your health are eat, sleep and move more, be careful what you put in your body, and reach for water to drink! The results may well astound you.