Placing your health as the top priority and making healthy lifestyles part of your daily life entails lowering your risk of getting struck by a disease- cancer, heart disease or even kidney disease. But living healthy requires huge efforts and dedication. Below are the top tips for healthy living in 2022.
Physical activity is defined by the WHO as any movement requiring energy expenditure. It includes all kinds of activities, including walking, bicycling, playing sports, and active recreation. Regular physical activity improves our health in several ways, including preventing non-communicable diseases, maintaining healthy body weight, and improving our mental health.
Moderate exercise for thirty minutes a day five days a week is sufficient to reap the benefits of physical activity. You can break the 30 minutes into two fifteen-minute and three 10-minute sessions. However, the benefits of exercise are much greater when you do it regularly. For the best results, you should engage in activities that you enjoy and are purposeful. Try to increase your physical activity level gradually. By gradually increasing the amount of time spent exercising, you will see greater improvements in your mental and physical health.
In addition, regular exercise improves your emotional health and mental well-being. Regular physical activity can help you boost your mood, improve your memory, and reduce your risk of depression, anxiety, and other common mental health problems.
2. Sleep Regularly
Whether we’re a teen or an adult, a good night’s sleep is crucial for maintaining our vital functions. Sleep allows cells and tissues to repair themselves. In fact, most of the body’s restorative functions occur during sleep. Without it, the immune system is weakened and unable to fight off harmful agents.
Studies show that people who sleep well get better mental health than those who don’t. People who don’t get enough sleep tend to be fatter, have higher BMIs and are more likely to develop diabetes. Without sleep, people can become moody and uncoordinated, leading to mental health problems.
The quality of sleep you get each night depends on several factors. Adults typically require seven to nine hours of sleep per night. Young children and teens need longer. However, many factors can interfere with getting adequate sleep. Stress, day-to-day activities, and a cluttered bedroom environment can cause sleep deprivation. Fortunately, there are some tips to help you get the rest you need. However, if your sleep is not adequate, it may signify a sleep disorder.
3. Eat a Healthy Diet
Ideally, your diet should include a variety of fruits and vegetables, lean meats and poultry, whole grains and dairy products, and legumes. A balanced diet should also include some red meat and dairy products. It is also good to eat plenty of fish and shellfish, which have similar benefits for your heart and brain.
While it can be tempting to indulge in fatty foods, you should balance your diet with a range of healthy fats. Try limiting your red meat and processed meat intake, and focus on monounsaturated fats that do not contribute to high cholesterol levels. Healthy sources of fat include olive oil, fish oils, and nut-based oils. These are also good ways to satisfy your cravings and maintain a healthy diet.
4. Daily Meditation
Daily meditation has many benefits. It lowers blood pressure and reduces stress, but it also lowers anxiety, promotes a healthy heart, and reduces cellular inflammation. In addition to its physical benefits, meditation promotes mindful thinking and a positive attitude. Healthy minds lead to healthy bodies.
Also, meditation improves your focus. When you’re overwhelmed, it’s easy to cancel dinner dates or doctor’s appointments. However, if you meditate daily, you won’t have to worry about a cancelled meeting or missing a parent-teacher conference. The benefits of daily meditation are vast. It’s well worth trying. Just remember to practice for five minutes each day. If you can’t manage to sit for a full hour each day, start with a little more time every day.
Meditation can improve your patience and tolerance. It can help you respond more thoughtfully to people. For example, meditating regularly will help you deal with difficult personalities and people with different political views. You’ll learn to remain calm and composed in stressful situations.
5. Limit Alcohol Intake
Limiting your alcohol intake has various benefits as it also helps your liver perform many important functions in your body. Drinking too much alcohol increases your risk of developing heart disease and stroke. The recommended amount is no more than four standard drinks per day for men, while women should limit themselves to two drinks a day. A standard drink contains 14 grams of pure alcohol, whereas a shot of spirits contains 40 grams of alcohol.
Moderate drinking may help protect the heart by increasing HDL levels. High HDL levels have been linked to a reduced risk of heart disease and stroke. Drinking moderately has also been linked to improved insulin sensitivity and clotting factors. These effects are important in preventing the formation of small blood clots that can block the arteries of the heart, neck, and brain. The key is to choose the right alcohol consumption level.
6. Avoid Smoking
If you’re a smoker, you’re probably wondering how avoiding smoking helps for long and healthy life. Nicotine in tobacco is addictive, so it can be difficult to give up. While some people report no withdrawal symptoms, many have to battle strong cravings. People can feel grumpy, sleepy, and tired without cigarettes. Often, people fear they will gain weight when they stop smoking. Hence, it’s important to get plenty of physical activity to distract yourself from cravings.
Besides affecting your own health, smoking also affects the health of your family and friends. Secondhand smoke is associated with a higher risk of heart disease, lung cancer, and stroke in adults. Furthermore, smoking is highly damaging to women’s health. Smoking increases the risk of miscarriage, stillbirth, and preterm labour in pregnant women. All these factors are detrimental to a woman’s health.
A smoker’s risk of developing stroke and lung cancer is reduced by 50% after quitting. In addition, ex-smokers don’t have the same high risk of snoring as smokers. They often have better breathing, which leads to better sleep. As an added bonus, they are less likely to experience stress.
Always Reach Out to Friends and Family
Whether it’s talking about mental health issues or simply making sure you’re healthy, reaching out to friends and family can make all the difference. While it can be difficult to ask for help when you’re suffering, letting people know that you’re hurting or thinking about suicide will make the process easier. Whether it’s a simple phone call, driving you somewhere special, or listening to your stories, relying on friends and family to support you can make a huge difference.
The health benefits of social relationships are many. Keeping in touch with people who understand your personal situation can keep you motivated and encourage you to reach your goals. For example, it may be beneficial to reach out to friends trying to lose weight or who have gone through the same experiences. This social support can also help you cope with the stress of changing your lifestyle. Stress has been linked to many serious health problems, including heart disease. By building a close social circle, you can minimize the effects of stress and keep your life positive.
7. Always Think Positive
Practising positive thinking has many health benefits. For starters, it helps you cope better with stressful situations, which reduces the harmful effects of stress on the body. More positive people tend to live healthier lifestyles, get more exercise, and eat better. They also avoid smoking and alcohol consumption. In short, positive thinking can help you live a longer, happier life!
The first step in practising positive thinking is to identify those areas where you are negatively biased. Write down these areas and identify positive alternatives. Keep these in mind for the next time you’re faced with negative situations. Even if you’re feeling hesitant to start, you can begin by tackling one area of your life at a time. Try to focus on one area at a time and then build upon it.
Optimism has many advantages for your health. Not only does it increase your happiness, but you’re also less likely to give up your goals and dreams. If you’re someone who often finds the bright side in everything, positive thinking may be the right approach for you. Practice meditation to prevent negative self-talk, spend time with positive people and use affirmations to shift your mindset. Even mindfulness exercises can improve your outlook.
Another benefit is that positive thinking reduces stress and inflammatory diseases. Furthermore, it can improve the effectiveness of medical treatments. In the book “Who Switched Off My Brain?” Dr Caroline Leaf explains that our thoughts become actions. Our attitudes are like seeds in the ground, so if we think positively, we’ll be more likely to reap the benefits of positive thinking.
Let these tips be a guide for you as you choose the path to a healthier and a unique version of you. Though obstacles may come, but just stand strong and take things gently, one at a time. Not to worry, things will surely fall in place for you.