Being healthy is not just about eating the right foods and exercising. Granted, those are two of the biggest elements which contribute to maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
But, there are other factors which can ensure every part of your body — including your mental state — is in tip top condition.
I want to share with you my strategies for making yourself healthier
7 Ways To Get Healthy Today
1. Eat Right and Exercise
Let’s get the obvious ones out of the way first. Eating the right foods and exercising will not only make you look good on the outside, but it will make you feel good on the inside, too.
This is because exercising in particular increases oxygen to your muscles and encourages blood flow. This helps lower blood pressure, cholesterol and strengthens your heart, which results in longevity, and improves overall cardiovascular health.
Exercising and eating right also helps to improve your appearance and produces endorphins (chemicals in the brain that make your feel happy). This can help you to have more confidence, and prevents you from participating in self-destructing behavior.
These are all qualities needed to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
2. Drink Water
You also need to make sure you are drinking plenty of water, up to the standard 8 glasses per day, but preferably more.
Water is truly the miracle beverage, and should not be dismissed or replaced by other beverages, especially caffeinated, carbonated drinks, which can make you feel bloated and dehydrated.
Your body, which is typically compromised of 55 and 75 percent water, needs to maintain a good level of water in the system to function optimally. Water prevents dehydration, however when you are dehydrated it depletes your energy, and can make you feel lethargic.
When your body is in this fragile state you are more prone to dizziness, headaches, and fatigue. Water also works to flush out harmful toxins and pollutants in your body, which can make you sick.
3. Avoid Vices
Smoking and drinking alcohol can have several harmful effects on your body.
Smoking can prevent sufficient oxygen flow to your muscles and brain, and can reduce the blood flow as well. Alcohol is full of calories, and can lead to weight gain over time.
These vices will also slow you down and make you feel more sluggish.
4. Get Some Rest
Getting the proper 6 to 8 hours of sleep is also extremely important for a healthy, balanced life.
Studies show that sleep is linked to strengthening your immune system, and repairing damage caused by stress, it can also help to prevent low mood, amongst other health benefits.
Getting a good nights also helps with losing weight — researchers suggest those who sleep less typically carry more weight.
Vitamin D helps to strengthen your bones, and is thought to help prevent certain types of cancers, as well as heart disease, and diabetes. Vitamin D has also been linked to preventing mental illnesses, like schizophrenia.
To help build up your vitamin D reserves, some researchers suggest:
- 5 to 30 minutes of sun exposure, at least two times per week — depending on skin type, season, time of day, etc.
- Between 11am and 3pm
- Exposing face, arms, legs, or back, without sunscreen
But, if you spend a lot of your day indoors, or you’d rather not expose your skin to the sunshine, you need to make sure you are getting some good sources of vitamin D into your diet, or disucuss taking a vitamin D supplement with your GP.
6. Hug Someone
You may be against public displays of affection, but studies show that hugging a loved one can help to reduce both blood pressure and your heart rate.
This can have significant benefits over other serious health issues, such as heart disease and stress.
So, now you’ve got an excuse to give someone you love a big squeeze ;-)
7. Keep Your Brain Active
One of the best ways to make yourself healthier is to keep your brain healthy. And, the easiest way to do that is to make sure your brain is constantly active and stimulated — meaning, don’t let it turn to mush!
Instead, participate in memorization games, or games which really require that you use your noggin, such as crossword puzzles and Sudoku.
It’s also a good idea to read books or study old school materials. You can even consider enrolling in a community college class, or one online for self-enrichment purposes.
This is a guest post from Tara Miller