Sometimes it can feel like maintaining a healthy lifestyle is an overwhelming challenge that doesn’t fit within the realities of daily life.
However healthy living is really made up of small things we do daily—things that are so small they don’t feel momentous, but that, done consistently over time, add up to produce big results.
Join me for 31 days of wellness tips for healthy & happy living.
Drink Water First Thing in the Morning
Drinking warm water can help cleanse your digestive system by flushing out unwanted toxins.
Drinking a glass of water first thing in the morning increases metabolic rate, which allows the body to burn more calories.
Ayurvedic medicine, a holistic approach to water treatments, says that consuming water directly after waking up can cure life-threatening diseases and conditions such as cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure and so on.
Take a Probiotic Daily
Maintaining a healthy gut has significant impacts on digestion, skin health, immunity, mental health and more. Taking a daily probiotic with a glass of water each morning is one of the simplest things you can do to boost your gut health (which, in turn, boosts overall health in many ways too).
Many food products such as yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi and miso contain probiotics. They are often advertised as containing live and active cultures such as bifidobacterium and lactobacilli.
Stand Up Every 30 Minutes While Working
It is well-known that prolonged sitting is detrimental to metabolic health, contributing over time to high blood sugar and high cholesterol, even in healthy individuals.
Reduce the harmful effects of sitting (like at your desk job) by standing up and moving around for a minute or two every half hour.
Eat the Rainbow
One of the healthiest habits you can get into is to eat a whole rainbow of foods – or as much colour as you can in your meals!
The phytochemicals that give fruit and vegetables their vibrant colour contain antioxidants, which can help your body to protect itself from poor health.
Red foods such as tomatoes, red berries.
Orange foods, such as orange peppers, sweet potato, pumpkin, mangoes and nectarines.
Green foods like cabbage, kale, Brussels sprouts and so on.
And blue or purple-toned foods, from red cabbage to beetroot and blackcurrants.
So eat the rainbow.
Sweat Every Day
Although we associate sweat with temperature regulation, sweat has numerous other benefits such as:
Detoxes Heavy Metals. Produces Antibiotic Peptides. Reduces Stress. Promotes Weight Loss. Provides Pain Relief. Strengthens the Cardiovascular System. Promotes Healthy Skin.
Aim to sweat in some way each day—whether that’s via exercise, running, biking, dancing, hot yoga, any other physical activity you enjoy, infrared sauna, dry sauna or steam room.
Don’t Eat Until You’re Full
A healthy person’s stomach is the size of a fist, while an unhealthy person’s stomach can be the size of a football. It’s a shocking fact. The cause of the stomach expansion is overeating. When this is done regularly, the stomach starts to stretch. Consequently, the person needs to eat more and more to maintain that full, satisfied feeling.
How to avoid this? Always eat a little less than you think you need or would like. This will keep your stomach at its natural size – and your body at a healthy weight too.
Practice Dry Skin Brushing
This is the single most effective way to get blood circulating, encourage lymph drainage and smooth the surface of your skin all in one.
Your skin is your largest organ and one-third of your body’s toxins are excreted through it and there is one simple step you can add to your morning routine that can greatly improve its health – dry skin brushing.
All you need is a good natural brush. Learn how to do it here.
Don’t Eat After Dinner
It’s easy to get in the habit of snacking at night, and it’s one of the most common weight loss challenges we all face.
Having a late-night meal keeps the body on ‘high alert’ at a time where it should be winding down, which can have dangerous implications for our health.
So stop eating after dinner to allow your body to rest and repair while you sleep. Your body has a lot of important tasks to accomplish while you sleep. Your detoxification organs actively deal with toxins, the human growth hormone kicks in to help you age well, and so much more! Your overall health will improve when you allow your body to focus on these repair tasks at night, instead of being “distracted” by digestion or blood sugar imbalances.
Make Sure You Chew Your Food Well
Most people gobble down their food and don’t take the time to chew or enjoy it properly. If you’re one of these people, try slowing down your eating by chewing your food longer than you would normally do. You’ll enjoy the taste of your food more, and you’re likely to eat less too.
Meditation is probably the most powerful tool when it comes to happiness and good mental health. Studies have shown regular meditation practices reduce stress, anxiety, and health issues.
The main reason is it can help reduce overthinking and create a more mindful mindset. It can come in the form of just sitting quietly, yoga, prayer, or purposeful breathing.
Floss Your Teeth Daily
Regular flossing plays a crucial role in your dental hygiene. When you skip flossing, plaque can build up between your teeth and along your gumline. Over time, this can increase your risk of tooth decay and gum disease.
Good dental hygiene doesn’t only benefit your teeth and gums. It may benefit your heart health, too.
If you’re not an everyday flosser, commit to a month of mindful flossing before bed. Once you make it a healthy daily habit, you won’t be able to imagine skipping it.
Stretch Before Bed
Stretching before bed will help you fall asleep faster, improve blood flow, and relieve muscle tension. After a day of being hunched over a computer, hauling groceries, and generally pushing the body and mind to their limits, a 10 min stretch before bed feels like a SPA treatment.
However, be sure not to stretch too intensely or vigorously before bed, as this can interfere with sleep.
Aim for Eight Hours of Sleep a Night
Sleep is the time when the body undergoes rest and repair. It is recommended to get 8 hours of good quality sleep to maintain good health.
Lack of sleep can cause short term effects such as low mood, increased appetite, low energy and fatigue. In the long-term lack of sleep has been seen to affect your immune system making you more susceptible to catching common colds.
Aim for 10,000 steps a day
This is an excellent healthy habit to form if you’re looking to improve your physical health. The 10,000 steps goal has been studied, and the results suggested that doing so could improve heart health, mental health, lower the risk of diabetes cancer and dementia.
Drink Green Tea
It is one of the most powerfully healthy things you can add to your lifestyle, plus it’s delicious.Green tea is far more than just a green liquid. It is one of the healthiest beverages on the planet – loaded with antioxidants and nutrients that have powerful effects on the body. This includes improved brain function, a lower risk of cancer, FAT LOSS and etc. Green tea is delicious and perfect to start your day with!
Spend Time Outside
Getting fresh air on a regular basis is one of the easiest ways to improve your overall health. Exposure to the sun enables the body to produce vitamin D, which has been shown to have many essential functions in the body. Deficiency in vitamin D has been linked to fatigue, weakened immune system, bone and back pain, low mood, and depression. Ironically, vitamin D is one of the most commonly supplemented vitamins, while daily exposure to the sun could prove to be a simple solution to this concern. So, whether it’s spring, summer, winter, or fall, ensure that you spend some time outside every single day.
Pay Attention to Your Posture
Poor posture has been linked to stress incontinence, constipation, heartburn and slowed digestion.
Good posture has also been found to improve confidence levels in your own thoughts, decrease the risk of depression, help with breathing and support your back.
Work on Your Balance
Another great healthy habit is to include exercises that develop your balance into your schedule.
This includes anything from yoga, to tai chi and pilates. Balance training like this is often used to strengthen the muscles that keep you upright, as well as improving stability.
One study also found that balance and coordination exercises helped to improve quality of life.
Plan Your Meals Each Week
Planning your meals each week means you will put a lot of thought into what you will have for breakfast, lunch, and dinner each day. This means you are less likely to purchase items that are not healthy for you and focus on foods that give you the nutrients you need. Planning your meals also means you are less likely to spend money on expensive food places when lunchtime comes around at work. So you get a two-for-one win: you’re keeping both your body and wallet healthy.
Incorporate Gua Sha Into Your Daily Skincare Routine
This delightful form of self-care not only feels good but also has numerous benefits. It wakes up your skin, stimulates the lymphatic system, and helps with inflammation. With every massage, fine lines are softened, under-eye puffiness is reduced, skin feels firmer, and the complexion looks more glowing. Plus, if you use the Gua Sha regularly (at least two or three times a week, and ideally every day), you'll see results very quickly.
Add Vegetables to Every Meal
Okay, I’m urging you to add veggies to every meal and snack.
Research shows that diets filled with vegetables are healthier for a number of reasons. Veggies are low in calories, so they help you lose or maintain a healthy weight, which can prevent issues linked to obesity such as high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes. Veggies are also packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, which boost your immune system and ward off disease.
Set up “Walk Meetings” at Work
We spend a lot of time sitting in meetings and sometimes it can become stale. That's why introducing walk meetings can spruce up the meeting environment and have everyone more focused and energized.
Here's how it works. Instead of having everyone sit in a room, you all go for a walk outside or around your office building. This allows you to get some fresh air and enjoy a change of scenery.
Eat Healthy Fat
Research continues to support the benefits of consuming healthy fats like those found in olive oil, nuts, and avocado. We need to reduce trans fats and increase polyunsaturated fats in the diet to protect against heart disease. Healthy fats also contribute to help us feel satisfied and don’t crave unhealthy foods.
Differentiate Between Cravings and Hunger
Sometimes we confuse food cravings with actual hunger, which can lead to excessive snacking on some foods that aren’t so good for us.
A good habit to get into is to get in tune with your body and understand when we’re hungry and when we’re just craving something.
If so, you can learn to snack on nutritious foods to fill you up temporarily instead of empty calories.
And if it is that you’re craving something a little on the unhealthy side, allow yourself a small portion of whatever it is to satisfy it.
Add Cinnamon to Your Diet
Cinnamon helps reduce inflammation, balance blood sugar levels and mood and energy swings. It reduces LDL or bad cholesterol, while increasing HDL or good cholesterol and it’s even been studied in Alzheimer’s trials for its ability to stop the build-up of tau protein in the brain.
A daily intake of ½ teaspoon of cinnamon is recommended.
Make Your Own Single-Serve Snack Packs
Resist the urge to go to the vending machine by making your own single-serve snack packs. Beat those in-between meals hunger pangs and save money as well.
Limit Artificial Sweeteners
Remember that “low calorie” does not mean healthier. Artificial sweeteners have many negative effects on your health. The side effects may include: digestive issues, increased blood sugar levels, a higher risk of cancer, increased blood pressure and adverse effects on those with pre-existing mood disorders. Artificial sweeteners may also have an effect on some people's immune systems.
Try Easy and Healthier Substitutions
Switch from milk chocolate to dark. Dark chocolate is a great alternative that offers just as much sweetness and flavour, but with a host of added benefits including more antioxidants and minerals.
Instead of using the same old ranch dressing, why not try a flavorful olive oil dressing? Olive oil dressings are packed with monounsaturated fats that can help promote a healthy heart.
These are just a few ideas of easy substitutions you can make that will lead to a healthier lifestyle.
Cut Back Alcohol and Caffeine
While it's natural to want to indulge in these beverages occasionally, it's important to realize that there are potential side effects associated with them.
Alcohol can adversely affect your liver health, as well as your cardiovascular health. Moreover, alcohol consumption can lead to an increased risk of cancer and other diseases.
Similarly, too much caffeine consumption has been linked to various health risks. It can lead to insomnia and anxiety. Over time, it can increase blood pressure and cause heart palpitations.
That said, it's still possible to enjoy these beverages in moderation.
Drink Camomile Tea Before Bed
Camomile tea has long been known as an herbal remedy to aid digestion, improve insomnia, and reduce anxiety. It's naturally caffeine-free and has a mild, soothing flavor. Drinking it before bed can provide numerous benefits for your sleep health.
The antioxidants in camomile tea can help your body relax and reduce levels of tension, so you can drift off into a peaceful sleep.
Make Healthy Freezer Meals for Emergencies
Freezer meals can be a great way to be prepared and to guarantee nutritious, freshly cooked meals even when life gets hectic or you’re without access to grocery stores.
Here are some ideas for you:
Pasta Bakе; Veggie Quiche; Tuna Casserole; Meatloaf; Chilli Con Carne and more.
And last but not least my BONUS healthy habit for a healthier and happier lifestyle.
Exercising offers many benefits that can help improve both your physical and mental health. It can help you feel more energized and reduce feelings of stress and anxiety. Regular physical activity can also improve your sleep quality, strengthen your bones and muscles, and reduce your risk of chronic diseases.