Staying healthy seems hard sometimes, but it’s easier than you may think. Follow these seven tips to live a physically and mentally healthy life.
Getting and staying in shape is easy to plan but hard to do.
You probably know what you need to change in your life to be healthy. And you will start doing them.
Tomorrow. Or the day after.
Healthy changes don’t have to be difficult, though. You can still be you and enjoy your life without making major adjustments.
These seven quick tips will help you develop and maintain a healthy lifestyle with barely a ripple in your day!
1Cut the Sugary Beverages
Yes, they taste amazing. But those sugary drinks are full of empty calories that are silently dangerous.
Think about when you go to a restaurant and order a soda or sweet tea. Free refills are great until you count how many times you’ve emptied your glass and added another 300 calories to it.
Beverages don’t fill us up like food does, so it’s easy to keep drinking those calories. Trade your sugary drinks for plain or flavored water.
2Learn the Art of Meal Planning
Some people love to cook. Others prefer to do anything but get behind a stove. Either way, you can get into meal planning and start eating healthier.
Whether you’re a culinary artist or a microwave chef, meal planning is a lesson you must master. With this skill, you’ll save the time and stress of trying to figure out the answer to that ever-annoying question, “What’s for dinner?”
There are lots of ways to go about meal planning. You can use an electronic app, a paper calendar, or templates from the internet. You can even draw up your own templates if you’d like!
Take half an hour once a week to plan out your meals for the next few days. This will limit those impulsive fast-food runs, which improves the health of your body and your savings account.
3Take a Nature Break
There’s something about nature that rejuvenates our minds and bodies.
If you can’t spend extended time in your favorite stomping ground, it’s okay. Getting outside for just a few minutes each day clears your head and improves your circulation.
Ten minutes a day is not an impossible amount of time to dedicate to your health. You probably lose that much time scrolling mindlessly through social media.
Find a few minutes between your tasks to go breathe the fresh air on a hiking trail. Take your dogs around the block or walk to your nearby lunch date.
Get some exercise and reduce your carbon footprint, too!
4Get More Restful Sleep
Millions of people don’t sleep as much as they need to, and they think it’s okay. But the American Sleep Association warns of the dangers of sleep deprivation on the entire body.
You start out feeling a little mentally drained, fatigued, and forgetful. You’re probably more irritable than usual and have trouble concentrating.
But this short-term damage is nothing compared to the dangerous consequences of long-term sleep deprivation.
Getting less than six hours of sleep on a regular basis weakens your immune system. It makes you more susceptible to cardiac disease and obesity, with all the health conditions associated with both.
In today’s society, it’s almost considered a badge of honor when someone foregoes sleep to be more productive.
Your body needs rest to heal the damages of the day, though. Sleep isn’t something you can swap out to make more time to work.
5Curb the Alcohol Intake
Like sugary drinks, alcohol is full of empty calories. Even if you’re mindful of the effect on your waistline and opt for low-calorie drinks, alcohol is not healthy.
If your health is important to you, alcohol needs to take a backseat. It can significantly harm your body, damaging your kidneys, liver, and stomach.
Studies have also linked long-term alcohol use with increased risk of these types of cancer:
- Head and neck
Over time, the results will show up visibly in your skin, but the silent damage could be deadly.
6Prioritize Your Mental Health
Have you ever noticed that when you’re feeling down, you don’t seem to care as much about your health goals?
Maybe you binge-eat junk food to feel better, or you skip meals because you don’t care to eat. Either way is unhealthy.
You might find yourself sleeping instead of working, skipping your workouts, or engaging in other unhealthy actions and non-actions.
When you prioritize your mental health, you can limit or reduce the time you spend feeling depressed.
Make time to spend with people you enjoy being around. Indulge in your hobbies at least once a week. Journal or talk to a counselor to purge your thoughts so they don’t pile up.
Whatever works to make you feel recharged, add it to your schedule regularly!
7Track Your Screen Time
It’s so easy to give yourself permission to watch a TV show or check your social media feeds for just a few minutes. How many times have those few minutes morphed into hours unexpectedly?
You can never get that time back, so it’s bad for your productivity. Sitting around playing on your electronics or watching TV is also unhealthy.
There are major perks to technology. We find answers to our questions and are able to communicate with friends and family across the world. We have access to entertainment and information on never-before-seen levels.
But we’re also slowly killing our minds and bodies. Long-term screen time results in chronic sleep deprivation, lack of exercise, and reduced social interactions.
Find an app to track your major vices and limit your screen time.
Maintaining a healthy lifestyle doesn’t have to be difficult or make you miserable. Without major changes, you can enjoy your optimized life and feel better, too.
With these seven quick tips, it’s simple to gradually or immediately switch your habits and improve your overall health.
Angus Flynn is the business manager of Arte, a luxury apartment community in Rancho Cucamonga, CA.