Sometimes making healthy changes in your life can feel overwhelming. But even the smallest changes can have a big impact. Fortunately there are simple, easy changes that are proven to improve health outcomes. Here are ten habits you can change to make your life even healthier.
If you’d normally start your day inside with a cup of coffee, try to sip and walk instead. Getting a little bit of movement in your day upfront can set your day up for healthier choices from the beginning. Even just a quick walk around the block can get your heart rate up and your muscles engaged.
Once you’ve started the day off with some steps, keep it going as your day goes on. If your day involves long periods of standing or sitting, try to get up and move at least once every hour. That might be a walk to get a drink of water, or a few quick jumping jacks. If you have a more physical job, even just stopping to stretch every so often can keep you limber and help prevent injury.
Added sugar—so not the kind found naturally in fruits and vegetables—is a proven cause of inflammation that can lead to a lot of different health complications. But it’s not always a good idea to go cold turkey on sweets. Sometimes it’s tempting to compensate with other unhealthy snacks. Instead, try to cut back slightly. Have one cookie for dessert instead of two. Or try sugar-free Tuesdays. It’s about the small changes here.
One easy way to reduce your sugar intake is to swap your go-to beverages with unsweetened alternatives. According to Harvard Health, 42% of the average person’s added sugar intake comes from energy drinks, sodas and sports drinks. Try to swap your soda for a sugar-free alternative as an easy way to cut back.
The benefits of time in fresh air and in nature are scientifically proven. If you can, take a walk outside. But even going to the park to sit in the grass or by the river can have big benefits for your health.
There’s a lot that the scientific community still has to learn about the impact of screen time. But initial findingsshow that less time in front of a screen is probably better for our health, with impacts from communication to physical fitness. Try turning off phones for family dinner, or switching off the TV for 30 minutes before bed. Even just a little less can make a big impact on your physical and mental health.
It’s easy to undervalue sleep. Life takes priority, and you can forget to get enough rest. Sometimes, even going to bed 30 minutes earlier can help you get the extra rest you need.
Expressing gratitude has proven health benefits. Incorporate those positive impacts in your day to day by thanking those in your life you’re grateful for. Maybe that means writing a message to a loved one, or sending a note to a mentor who’s helped you in your career.
Stress is inflammatory, and inflammation is connected to a wide variety of illnesses. Stress relief looks different for different people. It might mean going for a walk, doing some stretches, taking a bath or meditating. Find what works for you and prioritize it where you can.
The way you eat affects more than just your digestion. Make small, positive changes where you can. Even just eating a salad for lunch instead of fried chicken, or swapping out a breakfast filled with added sugar for one more nutrient rich can help a lot in the long run. It’s better to make more small changes than feel like you have to stick to impossible big ones.
From the small life changes to the big ones, CHP is there to help. For more health and wellness care, at an affordable cost, make an appointment at the clinic in your neighborhood.