Self-care is often neglected, but taking care of your body is much more important than you think. People with unhealthy habits face an increased risk of hypertension, obesity, and heart problems. Heart disease is the leading cause of death in The US, along with stroke, COPD, and lung cancer. But people can decrease the risk of developing these chronic conditions by adopting healthy lifestyle choices.
A healthy lifestyle is all it takes to avoid major health problems. You can start the change for a better life with the help of these tips.
Embrace sobriety with open arms
More than 140,000 people in the US die because of excessive alcohol consumption each year. What’s stopping you from becoming part of that statistic?
You don’t have to quit alcohol; even reducing your intake can reduce damage and help you avoid long-term health problems. As a healthy adult, you should limit your intake to less than two standard drinks a day.
Similarly, drugs of abuse pose another health risk, especially in states like Florida, where drug-related deaths have increased by 11% (24.9 deaths per 100,000 population) in recent years. Addiction-related health issues can be prevented by visiting rehabilitation centers like Palm Beach Group, where people can choose various treatment options and get the help they need. If you need help with such an issue, seek it as soon as possible.
Try to exercise more
Exercise helps overcome several health-related issues. You can achieve physical fitness through daily exercise, lose weight, control blood sugar levels, and improve cardiovascular health. Even walking for 20 minutes can boost your health significantly. Indulging in sports like swimming and cycling can improve mood, maintain weight, and reduce the risk of developing chronic medical conditions. People who exercise daily can significantly reduce their chances of dying from high blood pressure or cholesterol.
Daily exercise also improves mental health by triggering the release of endorphins and burning cortisol, which reduce stress and anxiety.
Ideally, you should work out at least 150 minutes/per week per CDC recommendations. If it feels overwhelming, you can steadily build up to the recommended amount by dividing the weekly minutes or opting for simpler exercises.
Maintain your BMI (body mass index)
Your BMI is a measure of your weight in relation to your height. A high BMI indicates you may be fat. A high level of body fat can lead to chronic conditions like diabetes and obesity. So, it’s important to calculate your BMI to know how much you should weigh in proportion to your height.
You can maintain your BMI with a suitable diet that does not include excess unhealthy fats and sugar. Regular exercise and weight tracking are also helpful in controlling your BMI and keeping you in shape.
No matter how long you’ve been smoking, it’s never too late to stop. Instead of giving in short-term pleasure, consider all the long-term benefits you can get from not smoking. These include the following:
- Your stamina improves
- You experience less cough
- The risk of pulmonary and cardiovascular disease reduces
- You can use the money spent on cigarettes somewhere else
- Your life expectancy increases as you decrease the risk of COPD and lung cancer
So consider quitting this bad habit. You can start by reducing the number of smokes per day and switching to nicotine patches to manage withdrawal.
Develop a healthy sleeping schedule
An optimum sleeping schedule is important to stay energetic and alert after you wake up. You can improve your sleep schedule with good sleep hygiene, which consists of the following:
- A proper nighttime routine
- Comfortable sleeping environment
- A fixed wake-up time
Both sleep deprivation and excess sleep can have negative effects on your health. So, what’s the ideal amount of sleep? It differs with age, but ideally, adults should clock in between 7-9 hours.
Finish your veggies, and lose the chips
You are what you eat, and if you don’t eat healthily, you won’t be healthy. This is why mothers always force their children to finish their vegetables.
Studies have shown that people who consume potato chips eat fewer vegetables and gain weight more easily. Chips have little nutritional value and are loaded with fat. Excessive snacking leads to higher blood pressure and increases the chances of heart disease.
To ensure your physical wellness, eat more vegetables and fruits. The most nutritious veggies you can consume are spinach, carrots, and broccoli. They contain many antioxidant properties and beneficial vitamins that help to reduce the risk of developing cancer later on.
Get regular checkups
Regular checkups are important to identify health-related problems before they escalate. In cases like cancer, early detection is what saves lives. You should get checkups from a health professional once or twice a year. Though, the frequency of the visits varies with age. Prevention is important to limit the need for invasive medical procedures like surgery and to avoid any health complications.
Don’t sit around too much
Too much sitting is responsible for a cluster of problems that make up metabolic syndrome, which is a combination of risk factors happening all at once. The syndrome increases the risk of heart disease and type-2 diabetes.
To combat excessive sitting, increase daily activities to boost energy levels. You can even set a reminder on your phone to walk every 30 minutes.
Mindfulness is a meditation technique in which you focus on the present while utilizing breathing techniques and other methods to reduce stress. Mindfulness helps you channel your energy to heal your mind, body, and soul.
A healthy mind makes a healthy body. Mindfulness reduces stress levels, lowers blood pressure, reduces chronic pain, and treats heart disease symptoms through meditation.
Living a healthy life isn’t a step-by-step process, but a lifestyle change that improves your daily life over time. The tips mentioned above are interlinked in one way or another. You can’t maintain your BMI without exercise, and you can’t exercise without proper rest.
Breaking old habits isn’t easy and requires dedication. You may even relapse, but remember to get back on track. Living a long, healthy life will be worth all of the efforts you put in.