Living a healthy lifestyle pays off both in the short and long term. The benefits include better health, more happiness, quality moments with loved ones, better work productivity, more energy, mental power, fewer diseases, saving money (think medical costs), increasing your lifespan, and so on. I cannot find a single negative in not living a healthy life.
If you’re wondering how to start a healthy lifestyle, look no further. These healthy lifestyle tips should help you get started with minimal effort, no matter where you are in your wellness journey and how busy your lifestyle is.
Here are 10 easy tips for a healthy lifestyle:
Eat a balanced diet – Make half of your meal fruits and vegetables. Add whole grains, omega 3 fatty fish (such as salmon), nuts, and seeds. Remember that on a plant-based diet variety is key. When in doubt, eat the rainbow, meaning fruits and vegetables (in season) of different colors and flavors.
Avoid sugar, fats, and processed foods – the more you reduce them, the better. Ideally, replace them with natural alternatives such as honey, and vegetable oils (olive, and coconut oils) and limit the processed foods to a minimum.
Stay hydrated – our bodies are about 60% water, so every cell in our bodies needs water to function properly. We need about 2-3 liters of liquids daily. Dehydration can cause brain fog, difficulties to concentrate, dry skin, painful joints, and weakened immunity. Staying well-hydrated also improves sleep quality, cognition, mood, work and physical performance.
Exercise – Get at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity a week or a combination of them. This can include walking, running, at-home yoga or Pilates, or taking the stairs instead of the elevator. Adults should also include muscle-strengthening activities that involve all major muscle groups for 2 or more days per week.
Try smart fitness mirrors – an interactive experience, from the convenience of your own home. The most interactive ones offer real-time feedback on your workouts and a selection of live on-demand classes, with top-class instructors and real-time feedback.
Read more: The Future of Smart Fitness Mirrors
Get enough good sleep – our bodies need about 7 to 9 hours of quality night sleep to maintain physical and mental balance. Sleep strengthens the immune system, improves brain functions, is good for weight management, is good for your mood and happiness, and can increase productivity and physical performance. In the long term, lack of sleep can weaken your immune system, leaving the door open to many lifestyle diseases. So simply prioritize sleep as one of the main pillars of a healthy lifestyle.
Keep a healthy weight – this can help prevent and control many lifestyle conditions (such as heart diseases, diabetes, and other chronic conditions). Losing weight will help you feel lighter, improve self-esteem, reduce joint pain, and boost sex drive and energy levels.
Research shows that losing just 5% to 10% of your body weight may improve mental health and reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease and certain cancers.
Limit your sun exposure – while the sun is your best source of vitamin D (also known as the “sunshine vitamin”) good for immunity and healthy bones, we need to limit our sun exposure. To maintain healthy blood levels, aim to get 10–30 minutes of midday sunlight, several times per week. This is because of diseases associated with frequent and long sun exposure such as skin cancer, and skin aging (the sun is also a main cause of wrinkles). Use sunscreen and long-sleeved clothing when you are outdoors, even in winter.
Do not smoke – this is a no-brainer: smoke causes harm both to you and the people around you. Smoke is correlated with a high incidence of lung cancer and other organ cancers and respiratory conditions.
Limit your alcohol intake – Men should limit alcoholic drinks to two glasses a day, while women should limit alcoholic drinks to one drink a day. Drinking excessive amounts of alcohol can lead to liver diseases and even liver cancer in the long run.
Drink red wine! Red wine has powerful antioxidants and some sources claim that drinking it has health benefits that may promote longevity, protect against heart diseases and reduce inflammation.
Reduce stress – Stress is a known trigger for many lifestyle diseases. So make sure you get plenty of sleep, take work breaks, spend time in nature, laugh more, meditate, and try yoga, pilates, or another form of physical activity that focuses on breathing.
These healthy lifestyle tips are great for busy people, active people, professionals, students, people of all ages and backgrounds, no matter where they are in their health journey. Choose 3 things from the list to begin with and start with small habits. Identify what makes you feel good and what brings you the greatest happiness.
What are your best lifestyle tips?