Living a healthier lifestyle is something that many people think about, but the idea and the practice can be two wildly different things, and because they don’t know where to start, they continue with their bad, unhealthy habits. In the long term, this will have extremely negative results for their health and standard of living. The following steps should help you to get started and start living a lot more healthily.
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The very first thing you need to do when you’re looking to change your life and live more healthily is to take stock of your current health and lifestyle situation. You can do this by making notes on how you feel at certain times of the day; when do you feel tired, how do you feel when you wake up, what happens when you climb the stairs and so on. When you know which actions or times are affecting you, you can better understand the problems you may be facing.
It’s also a good idea to make an appointment with your doctor, and perhaps your dentist as well. Get a good checkup and see what they think of your overall health; this information will then point you in the right direction to get started. They will measure your height and weight, talk about how much activity you do, and they might also discuss your diet and lifestyle choices.
After seeing your doctor, or simply knowing your body and the bad habits you have formed, you will know which issues are a priority. If you have chronic health problems, for example, then these will need to be treated first. Otherwise, it will be hard to become more healthy in general. The same is true for bad habits that have a negative effect on your health such as smoking or drinking too much or eating a lot of junk food. You will need to stop these behaviors before you can move onto becoming healthy. You can look at the best vape pens, for example, and switch from smoking cigarettes, or you could limit your junk food eating to once a week.
One of the best ways to become more healthy and to lose weight is to exercise. Not everyone enjoys the idea of going to the gym or joining in with a class, but the good news is that there will be a form of exercise that will certainly suit you as long as you make it fun. Going for a brisk walk in the woods with friends, learning how to dance, hiking, swimming in the sea, or cycling to and from work are all great ways to start to get fitter. The more you do, the better and more fun it will become. As long as you can get started, you will not only get fitter, but you will have a great sense of achievement as well.
When you’re aiming for a healthier lifestyle, and you know that your food choices will make a big difference to your overall health if you can change them, it’s important not to actually ‘diet.’ A diet means prohibiting yourself from eating certain things, and that can lead to cravings and binging. It’s a far better idea to cut down so that you still get to eat the things you love but in smaller quantities. Your mind is a powerful tool, and when it comes to eating more healthily, you can use that to your advantage. Instead of telling yourself that you ‘should’ eat something (or not eat something), tell yourself that you are choosing to eat it (or remove it from your diet). It will create a more positive frame of mind, and make it easier to do what you want to do.
If you do have a relapse and eat something that you know is bad for you, don’t feel guilty or berate yourself because you’ll only feel worse and the cycle will continue. Instead of guilt, remind yourself that no one is perfect and that you need to get back on track.
Stress is bad for our health; it can cause us to eat more than we should, sleep less, and even cause both mental and physical problems such as depression and heart disease. Therefore, the less stress we have in our lives, the better. Of course, this is often easier said than done, but if you can come up with some coping mechanisms, that will help you immensely. Meditation, visualization, deep breathing, yoga, and other tools can all help.
Sleep is when the body repairs itself, and when the mind can re-set. If we don’t get enough good quality sleep, that can’t happen, and we start the next day in a negative way. There are some ways to ensure (as far as possible) a good night’s sleep that should be adhered to. For example, the TV, computer, or mobile devices should not be used two hours before bedtime because not only are they stimulating and make it more difficult to fall asleep, but the light that they emit makes the body believe that it is time to be awake, not fall asleep.
Equally, exercise before bed is not a good idea (unless it is just light stretching), but you should have a hot bath if you can as, when you get out of the tub, your core temperature will fall and you’ll feel much more relaxed and ready for sleep.
Studies have shown that people who have more, closer friends are happier and healthier than those who don’t. If you have friends around you, they will be able to help you become healthier, perhaps by exercising with you, or reminding you when you are taking part in something that is bad for you. Plus you will go out more and be generally more stimulated. The friends don’t even have to be ‘real life’ ones; online friends from all over the world as just as important and can help just as much as those who live right next door.