To celebrate the 2020 Global Wellness Day we want to share 15 easy steps to live a better and healthier life.
Three experts of naturopathy, nutrition, and fitness explained 15 lifestyle changes they recommend.
- GIVE YOURSELF A BREAK
Give yourself permission to shorten your workout. Believe it or not, overtraining could be the problem. Fatigue, moodiness, lack of enthusiasm, depression, and increased cortisol are some hallmarks of overtraining syndrome. Your body can plateau if not given adequate rest to restore itself, ultimately leading to a decline in performance. Creating a periodization program can help prevent overtraining by building rest phases into your regimen.
- THINK SMALL
Try to focus first on one small, seemingly inconsequential, unhealthy habit and turn it into a healthy, positive habit. Starting with small, painless changes helps establish the mentality that healthy change is not necessarily painful change. It’s easy to build from here by adding more healthy substitutions.
- KEEP GOOD COMPANY
If you have personal relationships with people who have unhealthy habits, it is often an uphill battle. The healthiest people are those who have relationships with other healthy people. Get your family or friends involved with you when you walk or plan healthier meals. Making healthy changes with a loved one can bring you closer together as well as motivate you.
- MAKE A LIST AND CHECK IT TWICE
Take a few minutes and write down all the reasons you can’t begin an exercise program. Then look at the basis of each reason. Starting with even five minutes a day will have a positive effect because you will have created a healthy habit where one didn’t exist before, and that’s a powerful mental adjustment. A closer look at your list will expose those false beliefs hiding behind each excuse.
- SIGN UP FOR AN EVENT
Spice things up by signing up for an event like a run/walk race or a cycling ride where you can be part of a team. Doing so gives your workouts a new purpose, and it’s fun to be around others.
- THINK POSITIVE AND FOCUS ON GRATITUDE
Your body believes what you think, so focus on the positive: research shows a healthy positive attitude helps build a healthier immune system and boosts overall health.
- EAT YOUR VEGETABLES
Shoot for five servings of vegetables a day because a diet high in vegetables is associated with a reduced risk of developing cancers of the lung, colon, breast, cervix, esophagus, stomach, bladder, pancreas, and ovaries
- SET A “5-MEAL IDEAL”
What, when, and how much you eat can keep both your metabolism and your energy levels steadily elevated, so you’ll have more all-day energy. A “5 meal ideal” will help you manage your weight, keep your cool, maintain your focus, and avoid cravings.
- EXERCISE DAILY
Daily exercise can reduce all of the biomarkers of aging, including improving eyesight, normalizing blood pressure, improving lean muscle, lowering cholesterol, and improving bone density. Studies show that even ten minutes of exercise makes a difference. Anything is perfect.
- GET A GOOD NIGHT’S SLEEP
If you have trouble sleeping, try relaxation techniques such as meditation and yoga. Darken your room more and turn your clock away from you. Write down worries or stressful thoughts to get them out of your head and onto the page. This will help you put them into perspective so you can quit worrying about them.
- CHECK YOUR FOOD
Check your balance of low-calorie foods, nutrient-dense foods, and foods that are calorie dense but nutrient poor. A healthy approach to eating is centered on savoring flavor, eating to satisfaction, and increasing energy, rather than focusing on weight.
- EAT LIKE A KID
If adding more fruits and vegetables sounds ominous, look to “finger food” versions that preschool kids love, such as carrot and celery sticks, cherry tomatoes, broccoli florets, grapes, berries, and dried fruits which are nutritional powerhouses packed with antioxidants.
- BE A PICKY EATER
Limit saturated fats and trans fats, and aim to eat more foods rich in anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids to cut your risk of cardiovascular disease and maybe even improve depressed moods. Eat cold-water oily fish two to three times per week. Add up to two tablespoons of ground flaxseed and eat meat, milk, and cheese from grass-fed animals to provide you with a healthy dose of omega-3s.
- USE FOODS OVER SUPPLEMENTS
Supplements are not a substitute for a good diet. Specific supplements have been associated with toxicity, reactions with medications, competition with other nutrients, and even increased risk of diseases such as cancer, heart disease, and diabetes.
- GET SATISFACTION
Both eating and physical activity aim for pleasure, not pain. Pay attention to the nutritional value of the foods you choose to eat, as well as your sense of satisfaction, relaxation, exhilaration, when you sit down to eat. Check in with yourself as you eat, rekindling your recognition of hunger, fullness, and satisfaction when considering when and how much to eat.