No need to discuss how important it is for all of us to stay healthy. Here are some simple tips to help you achieve a healthier lifestyle — without turning it into a full-time obsession!
1. Eat blueberries — Blueberries are a true superfood. They are packed with antioxidants (like vitamin C, vitamin E, beta-carotene, fiber, and manganese), flavonoids, anthocyanins (this gives them the blue color), and other “good” chemicals. Blueberries are also rich dietary fiber, which can help alleviate and prevent constipation over time.
2. Surround yourself by pleasant smells – Surrounding yourself with pleasant aromas is a simple way to reduce stress, improve your mood, and increase brain function. Some oils are natural alternatives to medications. For instance, lavender can help you sleep better. Put a couple of drops of Lavender oil on your pillow before you go to sleep and enjoy results. Avoid synthetic fragrances that contain harmful manmade mimics.
3. Have a glass of wine – Drinking too much alcohol comes with severe consequences. But in moderation, alcohol is good for you. Research indicates that drinks like beer and wine raise high-density lipoprotein (HDL), or “good” cholesterol. Some studies also suggest that moderate alcohol intake, i.e., about a glass per day for women and two for men, can even help lower the risk of blood clotting and dementia.
4. Listen to music – A study presented at the European Society of Cardiology’s meeting indicated that listening to music bolsters the recovery of people with heart disease. People who listened to music for 30 minutes per day in addition to exercising improved their heart function more than people who just exercised.
5. Breathe clean air – We breathe about 3,000 gallons of air per day. So making sure we have a chance to breathe clean air is vital. To get rid of pollutants in your home, use a vacuum with a HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filter. Also fill your home with plants. Plants are natural air filters.
6. Eat green vegetables – The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends eating at least two and a half cups of vegetables per day (or about three servings). Vegetables like spinach and kale contain nutrients like omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin C, vitamin B-12, folate, and iron. Leafy vegetables are also essential for preventing constipation.
7. Enjoy sunlight – The reason people feel depressed in the winter – known as seasonal affective disorder (SAD) – is mostly due to a lack of sunlight. Studies indicated that spending time in the sun can help stave off the “winter blues”. Simply exposing your skin to sunlight for 20 minutes or so a day can be enough to fight winter depression. Try to take a walk or two during the day and also keep the shutters of your window open to let in as much light as possible.
8. Immerse in meditation –For thousands of years, various cultures have used meditation as a way of focusing the mind and healing the body. Medical research continues to prove the health benefits of regular meditation. Like exercise, meditation reduces stress, improves brain function, and lowers the risk of depression. Meditating is simple and it only takes 10-12 minutes a day. You can sit in a chair or lie in bed, relaxing your body while you concentrate on taking deep breaths. That’s it. You can let your mind wander as it chooses, as long as you keep breathing steadily and deeply.
9. Don’t skimp on sleep – Study after study confirms that getting a good night’s sleep helps maintain healthy weight, reduces stress, and may lessen the risk of migraines. Our bodies naturally wake us up when we’ve had enough sleep. About eight hours of sleep will leave you feeling better rested and more awake throughout the day.
10. Get moving – Regular exercise reduces stress, releases endorphins, improves brain function, and improves cardiovascular health. Even light exercise, like walking for about 20 to 30 minutes a day, is helpful. To reduce risk of injuries like muscle strains or back pain, start slow and increase intensity as your body adjusts.