Today there’s more focus on the benefits of healthy exercise and eating healthy. That’s a good start on living a complete healthy lifestyle, but not the total picture. A healthy diet is a key factor. There are studies that show that while some food can damage your body, other types of food can heal. Eliminating processed foods from the diet and replacing them with low glycemic fruits and vegetables goes a long way in improving health. Eliminating bad fat, such as trans fat and hydrogenated fat, and replacing it with healthy fat is also important. You need healthy fat to support a number of functions, including brain development, cellular healing and to fight inflammation. Elimination of sugar and grain products is another step.
Getting active or staying active is a lifestyle change that’s important.
If you’re already coming to the gym, you know how important staying active is. It not only helps you shed pounds, it also helps you maintain healthy bones and strong muscle tissue. It reduces the risk of chronic disease, like heart disease and diabetes. It boosts the productions of antioxidants in the body and promotes brain health. It also improves self-image and builds confidence. I especially like boxing as a confidence builder, since it can provide a method of self-defense, so you never have to feel like a victim.
Learn appreciation and focus on the good things you have.
There’s a lot to be said for a sense of gratefulness. It not only improves mental health, it actually helps people’s physical health too. Being grateful for what you have can promote a sense of well being and reduce stress. We all know that stress plays a big role in illness. One study showed that people felt healthier and had fewer aches and pains when they appreciated all they had. Gratefulness improves self-esteem, reduces depression, increases mental strength and even helps you sleep better.
Speaking of sleep, getting adequate sleep is also an important lifestyle change.
If you’re constantly burning the midnight oil, you may be putting your health at risk. Not everyone needs the same amount of sleep, some need more than eight hours and others need less. However, there are few that need just two or three hours a night and often they have catnaps throughout the day. Besides affecting your emotional well being, lack of sleep has physical consequences. Continuous sleep deprivation can lead to kidney disease, heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke and diabetes. It creates an increased risk for obesity and can throw your hormones out of whack. Your body heals itself as you sleep and processes the daily activities. The immune system needs sleep to be at peak performance.
- A healthy lifestyle includes drinking adequate water. Your body is up to 60% water. Lack of adequate water and dehydration can take its toll, leading to serious conditions, such as kidney stones.
- You’ll boost your nutrition, health and enjoyment when you add spices and herbs to your food. Spices and herbs offer many health-giving benefits, plus pack powerful flavor, but have almost no calories.
- A healthy lifestyle includes eliminating things you shouldn’t do. Smoking, excessive drinking and illegal drugs are three of those things to eliminate from your life.
- Enjoy the great outdoors. Whether you hike, garden or just sit in the park, communing with nature relaxes the mind and has other benefits. It boosts the immune system, lowers blood pressure and increases energy levels.