Simple Daily Habits that can Improve Your Long Term Health
When it comes to getting healthy and active, a lot of people look to diet plans, fitness programmes, secret techniques… big, sudden, radical changes that they think will change their lives.
However, while this may work for a few, the majority of people would be better off thinking small – small, simple changes to your daily habits that could improve your long term health drastically.
Healthy daily habits could help you avoid health issues such as obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, cholesterol, heart diseases and certain cancers.
Walking to work. Cycling. Stretching. Jogging. Yoga. Whatever it is, it’s beneficial. Everyone should be looking to work some form of exercise into their daily habits.
It’s well known that a sedentary lifestyle is not very good for you. Spending your entire day slouched over a desk or sinking into a couch can give you short term problems such as back pain or lethargy.
But recent studies have shown that, worryingly, this lifestyle can make you age quicker, make the brain decline quicker and lead to a higher chance of diabetes and obesity.
So it’s vitally important to exercise. This doesn’t need to be major, intensive training. It’s just a case of getting enough activity each day to raise your heart rate, work your muscles and move your joints through natural range of motion.
A simple brisk walk can be one of the best exercises a person can do. So why not try to work walking into your daily routine.
The biggest health challenge we face in modern society is the over-consumption of simple sugars.
Since 1980, the number of people with diabetes has quadrupled to 422 million adults (8.5% of world population), with many living in developing countries. Reports of Type 2 diabetes in children have also increased dramatically. Type 2 diabetes, which is largely preventable, accounts for 90% of all diabetes worldwide.
This means that the dramatic rise in diabetes rates is being largely caused directly by lifestyle choices. This also true of the rising obesity rates.
People often think of sugary products as sweets, cake, chocolate, soda’s etc. But as well as these, overconsumption of poor quality white bread, potatoes, pasta and cereals are a problem. They are high-glycemic foods, which means that they are rapidly converted to sugars inside the body. Combined with a sedentary lifestyle and you can see why the obesity and diabetes rates are through the roof.
Making some simple changes to our daily eating habits can have big results. Recent research has shown that sticking to a healthy daily diet for 12 months can lead to long-term positive chemical changes in the brain and body, allowing you to maintain your healthy new weight.
Something you will hear all the time is that you should drink lots of water every day. But do you? Have you worked it into your daily habits or do you only remember every so often?
Drinking water keeps you hydrated and helps your body fight illnesses. It has also been shown that drinking a glass of water before a meal can help prevent you from overeating and aid weight loss.
Many people ignore the stress building in their lives, in their work and relationships, which unchecked can lead to poor health.
Let your mind breathe by working a 10 minute slot into each day when you can let your mind wander. Get away from screens, emails, chats, chores, and just relax. Make this a daily habit and you will feel more relaxed and less stressed.
Getting enough sleep is really important for many aspects of your health. The brain does a lot of work repairing your body when your asleep. Sleep deprivation has been linked to worse cognitive function, and poorer attention, learning and creative thinking.
Improving your sleep pattern will improve your overall health and make you feel more alert. Habits like getting at least 7 hours sleep, not drinking caffeinated drinks in the evening, not looking at screens before bed, are all important. But maybe the most important and easy daily habit to work into your life is go to bed and get out of bed at the same times every day.
By integrating these simple healthy habits into your daily routine you may notice some big changes.