Guest Post from Sheila Olson of fitsheila.com
Would you describe your lifestyle as a healthy one? Healthy living means different things to different people, and you might be under the impression it requires eating a strict diet and spending hours every day in the gym. Actually, embracing a lifestyle aimed at good health can mean incorporating some simple choices into your daily routine.
Breathe Cleaner Air
You might be surprised to learn the air inside your home could be negatively impacting your health. However, as EverydayHealth explains, your home’s air quality might be a risk, containing a number of hazardous particles such as dust, molds, formaldehyde, radon, smoke, or pollen. Breathing those indoor pollutants can hurt your health over time, eventually leading to issues such as asthma or even lung cancer. One way to combat poor indoor air quality is by equipping your home with an air purifier. Air purifiers can tidy up a substantial portion of harmful pollutants, making the air in your home safer and keeping you healthier.
Get Better Sleep
Most of us are well aware that being sedentary promotes poor health. Because of that, getting more or better quality sleep might sound counterintuitive, but getting plenty of restful sleep is actually a key to good self-care. In fact, according to some studies, insufficient sleep or poor sleep habits are linked to a number of health concerns. Insomnia affects your brain function, hormone levels, and physical performance, which can translate to increased cravings, weight gain, and a higher risk of disease. The National Sleep Foundation recommends between seven and nine hours of sleep every night for the average adult and points out if you are feeling drowsy during the day or relying on caffeine to feel energized, you likely need to improve your sleep habits. Try increasing your exposure to sunlight each day and getting some exercise early in the day. Take a hard look at your sleep environment to ensure it’s comfortable for slumber. Also, make sure it’s dark, quiet, and cool in your bedroom, and avoid using electronics at night since the light from your phone, television, or tablet can make you feel more energized.
Be More Active
Getting more exercise is a tough one for many people. However, sometimes just changing how you think of exercise can make a world of difference. One idea is to think in terms of sitting less. Too much sitting is linked to several health concerns, such as heart disease and diabetes. Reframe your idea of fitness and make movement part of your daily routine. Stand up when you talk on the phone, or when you ride the bus to work, offer your seat to someone else. Get off a few stops early and walk an extra couple of blocks. Take a stroll on your lunch break, and add a few fitness-oriented items to your office, such as an exercise ball and some hand weights. When it comes to an actual workout, look for something you enjoy. Play outside with your kids or your dog after work, or participate in electronic fitness games. If you struggle with finding time for a workout, one idea is to commit part of your schedule to exercise. Make a date with a good friend to go hiking, or take a class doing something fun.
Eat Healthy Foods
A good first step toward healthy nutrition is examining how you perceive it and why you might make unhealthy choices. For many people, convenience is a key factor. For others, they fear they need to eat so lightly they won’t feel satisfied. Still, others try fad diets, only to discover things don’t pan out the way they hoped. Good nutrition is a key to wellness, helping you to avoid issues like heart disease and diabetes. Try reframing how you think of healthy eating habits. Instead of going hungry, fill up on fruits and vegetables. Keep your protein choices down to around a quarter of your meal, and aim for selections that are lean. And have some healthy snacks handy all the time, such as chopped veggies and trail mix.
Anyone can live a healthier life with a few simple strategies. Examine your home and choices you’re making, and think about your perspective. Embrace healthier living so you can feel great and enjoy overall wellness.