The 5 Easiest Changes To Start Leading A Healthier Lifestyle
Most people associate a healthy lifestyle with a lot of sacrifices, hardship, and constant monitoring of food intake and exercise; while this may be true for some, there are some simple steps most of us can take to start conducting a healthier lifestyle almost instantly.
It is very important to remember that every little change matters in the long run, therefore starting with one step and ensuring that becomes a habit before taking the next one is very common and acceptable, especially as one may focus more on the said step and may avoid feeling overwhelmed by the change.
But, what are the easiest, yet very common changes one can make to start living a healthier lifestyle?
These are the top 5 changes one can make for a Healthier Lifestyle:
1 – Healthy diet
A healthy diet doesn’t mean giving up all that is considered unhealthy, but rather finding the right balance of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, fats (mainly healthy), omega-3 fatty acids, as well as proteins and carbohydrates. While eating at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables each day is highly recommended, it is important to keep an eye on foods and beverages that are high in sugar, trans fat, and sodium, as well as red and processed meats.
2 – Exercise
It is recommended that one performs at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week (or at least 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity exercise) and this can be composed of a variety of different activities. The easiest moderate-intensity activities to incorporate in daily life are brisk walking, dancing, cycling (also pushing a lawnmower for example) which can all be gradually vigorous with increased effort (jogging, running, aerobics, mountain biking, etc).
3 – Good night sleep
Sleeping well and enough plays a crucial role in physical and mental health and it is essential for a healthy lifestyle.
A good night's sleep doesn’t only help to deal with stress better, it also helps with controlling the level of hunger; this is because a lack of sleep can create an imbalance of the hunger hormones in our bodies, which can consequently cause overeating.
Different ages have different sleeping hours recommendations, however, there are steps one can take to ensure they are set up for a good night's sleep, such as going to sleep at regular times, create a pre-bed time routine and create a relaxing environment in the bedroom.
4 – Smoking
No amount of smoking is classified as healthy, therefore, while this may be very hard, looking to quit is a very important step in the journey to a healthy lifestyle.
5 – Hydration
Most functions the body performs, also the ones we do not realize (like lubricating the joints in our body), use water in one way or another. The body is composed of about 60% water and this needs to be maintained for it to perform at its best.
While most guides recommend eight glasses of water per day, this is not backed by any scientific research per se, however, it highlights the importance of proper hydration.
As drinking water is very important, it is also extremely valuable that one controls alcohol and caffeine intake, as, amongst other factors, they also dehydrate the body.
Living a healthy lifestyle is a long-term commitment, however, one can start by aiming at a healthier version of the one already they are living by simply beginning to include some of the above and move towards integrating them into their routine.
The above, accompanied to trying to stick to a healthy BMI of between 18 and 24.9, can significantly increase life expectancy according to studies, and even just one healthy habit that is regularly followed can help towards that.
Multiple public policies are pushing us and encouraging us to start leading a healthier lifestyle and once into the rhythm, the incredible physical and mental benefits will push most to do even more!