Studies show that those who smoke, follow a poor diet, don’t exercise, and drink alcohol are three times more susceptible to cardiovascular diseases and almost four times more likely to die of cancer. An increasing number of people are facing premature death risk due to avoidable health issues due to poor lifestyle choices.
So, check out these 100 simple lifestyle changes that can drastically improve your overall health and wellbeing and prevent many health issues:-
With increasingly sedentary lives, exercise is more important to health than ever. Your body needs regular stretching, physical activity, and training to remain flexible, agile, and fit.
2. Get adequate sleep.
For optimum performance, output, and energy levels, you need about seven to eight hours of sleep. Sleep deficit which causes weight gain, depression, and hypertension.
3. Drink more water.
Keeping yourself hydrated is as basic as it gets. Drink at least two to three liters of plain water every day.
4. Stop smoking.
If you smoke, quit. Smoking is related to all major health issues.
5. Regulate your alcohol intake.
Drinking too much alcohol regularly not only causes liver damage but is linked with a host of other health problems including cardiovascular diseases.
6. Manage your blood pressure.
High blood pressure is increasingly common amongst adults but many are unaware of it. Get your blood pressure checked and make sure it’s within a heart-healthy range.
7. Say no to anxiety and tension.
Anxiety and tension can seriously disrupt hormone production, blood sugar levels, and sleep patterns. The key is to focus on problem-solving and positive thinking from the beginning.
8. Maintain good oral health.
Regular and correct brushing, oral supplements and lifestyle changes will improve oral health. You can use natural, homemade products to remineralize teeth.
9. Cut back on painkillers.
Regular use of painkillers can raise the risk of heart attack and stroke by 10%. Restrict their use only for severe pain, and use low doses for short periods.
10. Incorporate dietary changes steadily.
Your body, particularly your digestive system needs time to adapt to the changes in your food habits. So don’t try to change foods, proportions, eating habits all at the same time.
11. Plan your lifestyle and healthy activities.
Plan your daily routine and meals. Consult your schedule and allot time for exercise, proper meals, and health appointments.
12. Be food safe.
Keep your kitchen hygienic and clean. Wash your hands and utensils before and after handling food. Store all foods properly and cook food to a safe temperature to prevent food poisoning.
13. Include fruits and vegetables in your diet.
Fruits and vegetables are packed with vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants that are great for your body and especially your skin.
14. Avoid junk food and eat homemade meals.
You can indulge in restaurant food once in a while but stick to home-cooked meals which are always more nutritious and healthy.
15. Remove refined and processed foods from your diet.
Eliminate highly processed foods like white bread, refined flour, processed instant foods. Replace them with whole grains, vegetables, and organic alternatives.
16. Cook more often.
Cooking at home is not just a matter of necessity but it is also a way of connecting with your food. Cooking can become a form of therapy. Play with colors, ingredients, and tastes.
17. Limit your sugar and salt intake.
We are often unaware of the amount of sugar and salt we consume daily as they are hidden in a lot of processed foods. Too much sugar and salt in your diet adversely affects your body and is also bad for oral health.
18. Control your portions.
Controlling the amount of food you eat is as important as deciding what you eat. Weight management depends to a large extent on your portion sizes.
19. Eat foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids.
Omega-3 foods promote cellular health. The fiber also keeps you fuller longer and reduces chances of overeating.
20. Eat fresh fruit or yogurt instead of your daily dessert.
Baked goods may be very tempting, but they are usually high in calories and low in nutrition. Fresh, seasonal fruits or unsweetened yogurt or raita are healthier options.
21. Use extra virgin olive oil or lemon juice instead of salad dressings.
This is a great way to cut back on hidden sugar, cream, and refined oils without compromising on taste.
22. Plan healthy meals in advance.
Plan what you are going to eat in advance according to your calorie and nutrient needs. This will save time, and make sure you are sticking to a healthy diet.
23. Make a morning routine.
Mornings are a great time to devote fully to yourself. Start with a juice, tea or cleansing water. Develop a few activities that make you feel energized and good throughout the day.
24. Arouse passion for healthy food.
If you explore and love fresh, organic food, you won’t need to force yourself to follow a healthy diet. Try gardening, experiment with different foods in your grocery store, explore local markets.
25. Develop the habit of mindful eating.
We binge-eat most often when we are bored, sad, or occupied with watching television or visual media. Instead, pay attention to why, what, and how much you are eating.
26. Go for local harvest.
Locally sourced, fresh harvest is always more preferable to canned, refrigerated, or preserved food. They are not only cheaper but also carry much more nutritional value.
27. Avoid mayonnaise, BBQ sauce, or ketchup in your food.
They are loaded with bad fats, sugar, or fructose syrup. Even if you can’t eliminate them entirely, replace them with mustard or other alternatives.
28. Eat 10g of nuts daily.
Nuts like almonds, walnuts, and cashews are great for health. They reduce the risk of death from any health-related issue by almost 23%.
29. Shop according to your needs.
This reduces wastage and impulsive buying of high-calorie packaged foods.
30. Season with fresh or dried herbs and spices instead of salt.
High sodium consumption increases blood pressure, heart complications, and kidney problems.
Instead, use fresh or dried spices and herbs.
31. Stop drinking soda.
Soda and carbonated drinks contain a lot of calories such as artificial sweeteners, high fructose corn syrup.
32. Be wary of fad diets.
Don’t jump on a diet bandwagon just because it has become very popular. It’s more important to check if it suits your health needs, medical history, and goals.
33. Supplement carefully.
There are thousands of supplement options in the market. It’s best to ask your doctor which supplements and dosage you should go for.
34. Read the labels.
Know how to read the ingredients list and find out how many calories, nutrients, and fats in your food.
35. Try to eat organic foods.
Though organic foods are more expensive than non-organic, it definitely helps if your foods are pesticide and chemical-free.
36. Cook your meals in advance.
You can minimize eating outside or packaged foods by cooking several portions at once.
Even if you are running late, you can reheat your pre-cooked meals.
37. Eat your meals with others.
Eating good food should be an enjoyable experience and it is enhanced by the presence of good company. Family meals are also a great opportunity for bonding.
38. Use healthy oils for cooking.
Don’t cook with heavily processed vegetable oils. Extra virgin olive oil is great for low-temperature cooking while seed oils and coconut oil are also healthy.
39. Get your micro-nutrients.
We need enough vitamins and minerals to function properly and prevent vitamin or mineral deficiencies. Eat nutrient-dense foods and take multivitamin supplements, if necessary.
40. Avoid sugary food and drinks.
Artificial sugar and sweeteners only carry empty calories. Sugary drinks are also bad for oral health.
41. Eat on time and don’t skip meals.
If you ignore your feelings of hunger, it could result in eating too much or choosing unhealthy snacks. Skipping meals is not a shortcut to weight loss. It can cause serious health issues.
42. Replace red meat with white meat.
Replace red meat with white meats like chicken and fish. Fish usually carries healthy fats. It is an important source of omega-3 fatty acids, proteins, and vitamin D.
43. Drink green tea.
Green tea has a lot of health as well as therapeutic benefits. It also carries antioxidants which are great for the skin.
44. Avoid trans-fat foods.
Trans-fats increase the level of harmful LDL cholesterol and lower beneficial HDL cholesterol.
45. Limit intake of saturated fat foods.
A diet heavy in saturated fats increases total cholesterol levels and leads to more harmful LDL cholesterol that blocks arteries.
46. Have a balanced diet that combines sufficient carbohydrates, fats, and proteins.
Fats or carbohydrates are not completely bad and you need these macronutrients too in regulation. Try to have a source of each of these in your primary meals.
47. Grow an herb garden.
Fresh, homegrown herbs are not only a gardener’s delight but they’ll motivate you to cook more. They are also chemical-free.
48. Stay away from trigger foods.
Identify your trigger foods and avoid them. These foods cause a blood sugar imbalance, thus triggering you to eat more.
49. Eat timely small meals.
Set your daily meals at regular intervals and stick to them. Whenever you eat a meal late or keep eating snacks in between, it disrupts the proper functioning of your digestive system.
50. Add probiotics to your diet.
Probiotics are living microorganisms that are present in our gut and help us. They improve digestion and help fight “bad” bacteria.
51. Don’t skip your breakfast.
Breakfast kick-starts your metabolism and helps you to be alert and energized throughout the day.
52. Stop eating food when you feel full.
Instead of relying on external cues like whether everyone else has finished eating or your plate is empty, observe whether you feel full. That always prevents overeating.
53. Practice long, and slow eating.
Chew your food well and eat slowly. This not only helps digest your food better but prevents you from eating too much.
54. Eat foods with polyunsaturated fats.
Polyunsaturated fats are essential for our body. Salmon, walnuts, mackerel, sardines, and flaxseeds are good sources.
55. Include monounsaturated fats in your diet.
Most nuts, olive oil, peanut oil, avocados, and safflower and sunflower oils all contain monosaturated fats.
56. Stop yourself from emotional eating.
We often indulge in emotional eating when we are depressed or disappointed. Comfort food is not what should motivate you to eat all the time.
57. Learn how to say no.
If you are not hungry, decline to eat food, even if your friends ask you to or offer you food.
58. Only take antibiotics when they are needed.
The more antibiotics we take, the more we run the risk of creating a resistance to them. So, use them only to treat bacterial illnesses.
59. Challenge your brain in different ways.
Learning a new language or driving a new route to work are some of many ways to keep exercising different parts of your brain. Make it a goal to keep learning as you grow older.
60. Take care of your mental health.
Some studies connect a history of depression with higher risk of cognitive decline. Depression, mental disorders, or illnesses need to be treated and managed, just like physical diseases.
61. Stimulate creativity and critical thinking.
Even if you are busy, practice thinking creatively and critically about everything around you. It improves cognitive powers and keeps you sharp.
62. Work out different parts of your body.
Don’t focus on only one or two parts when you exercise. Engage in a physical activity that involves different muscle groups. You can also take up a sport.
63. Find a workout partner.
While this does not suit everybody, finding a good workout partner can keep you motivated and dedicated to your fitness routine.
64. Give yourself time to recover from workouts.
You need to give your body time to rest and recover from physical training. Some people actually over-train by not giving their body enough recovery time.
65. Stay active throughout the day.
Even if you have completed a morning workout, stay active by walking on lunch breaks, taking the stairs, or taking the dog outside.
66. Take a break from sitting for long periods.
Take breaks in sitting by standing, stretching, twisting or walking for a minimum of 5-10 minutes every hour while at work or sitting at home.
67. Take up a hobby.
Spending some time to do what you love can have real health and therapeutic benefits. It is also a better alternative to passively watching television or sleeping when you are bored.
68. Do housework.
You can get some low-intensity physical activity by doing household chores instead of leaving everything to household helps.
69. Do a regular liver detox.
The liver is a very important and sophisticated organ. A detox helps in cleansing it and making sure it remains healthy.
70. Start your day with a glass of lemon water.
Lemon water cleanses and alkalizes the body. It is a great way to start off your mornings and make sure you are hydrated.
71. Cleanse your face regularly.
If you don’t wash your face at the end of the day, you’re leaving impurities like dirt, bacteria, and makeup on your skin. Maintaining a cleansing routine will help keep your skin healthy.
72. Protect your skin.
Our skin begins to age right after we are born and we need to protect it from harsh weather, overexposure to the sun, and pollution.
73. Exfoliate and moisturize.
Dry skin has tiny cracks in which bacteria can breed and also results in clogged pores. Exfoliation and moisturization are important to keep your skin glowing and healthy.
74. Clean your tongue.
Bacteria not only thrives in the gums and teeth, but it is also present on the tongue. Brush or scrape your tongue after cleaning your teeth every day.
75. Dry brush your body.
Dry brushing the body with a body brush exfoliates dead skin, stimulates the lymphatic system, and also helps to reduce cellulite.
76. Prevent eye strain by using the 20-20-20 rule at work.
Every 20 minutes you are looking at a screen or reading, look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds.
77. Watch less TV.
Excessive TV watching is said to increase your risk of dying from all causes by 11%. Heavy TV viewers report less life satisfaction, less social interaction, higher material demands, and more anxiety.
78. Wake up and go to bed early.
Most people now sleep very late at night and start off their days late or sleep-deprived. Instead, rising early and following the natural clock is healthier for both body and mind.
79. Go for routine health screenings.
Make sure you regularly track your health markers and don’t miss health checkups. This will ensure that you don’t miss any issue at the initial stages.
80. Try to raise your heart rate for a sustained duration every day.
Experts recommend 30 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity per day, for five days a week.
81. Spend some time outside.
Staying cooped up in your room or house for the entire day is not healthy. Spend some time outside in daylight. It’s a great way to absorb Vitamin D too.
82. Take a walk every day.
A daily walk is a great way to get some physical activity, move your legs, get out of the house and be active.
83. Use an activity monitor.
Activity monitors are a great way to check your daily steps or movements. They can track your baseline activity level and encourage you to move more.
84. Improve your body posture.
Good posture improves breathing, prevents back problems and makes you look smarter and more attractive.
Meditation can help you to calm your mind, connect with your inner self, and find your focus. It also helps relieve stress.
86. Remove negativity from your life.
Positive mental health is an important part of a healthy life. If you think some people or some habits are affecting you negatively, let them go.
87. Practise deep breathing.
Most of us don’t breathe properly. We take shallow breaths that take up only 1/3rd of our lung capacity.
88. Use progressive muscle relaxation.
This is a stress management technique, which is also very effective in promoting sleep.
89. Keep a diary or journal.
A diary or journal is a great way to organize and express your thoughts, It can also help to track your diet, physical activity, and health markers.
90. Make strong bonds and relationships.
Relationships with others is imperative for health. Group activities also help to keep the mind active and maintain desirable levels of serotonin.
91. Set long-term goals and actively work towards achieving them.
Finding meaning and satisfaction in life are important. Don’t lose sight of long-term goals like personal growth, better health, and contributing to the community.
92. Take vacations.
A study of men at high risk for coronary artery disease found that those who failed to take annual vacations were 32% more likely to die of a heart attack. Taking time off work is important for your physical and mental wellness.
93. Laugh more often.
Laughter can boost the immune system, promote heart health, burn calories, support mental health, and improve your quality of life. Enjoy humor, jokes, funny videos, and be silly now and then.
94. Love yourself.
Accepting and loving yourself is key to good health. A healthy dose of self-love can put an end to a lot of mental issues.
95. Use essential oils and aromatherapy.
There can be hundreds of phytochemicals within each drop of essential oil which have health benefits. They can aid cell regeneration, have anti-viral and anti-inflammatory, and calming properties.
96. Experiment with your food and fitness routine.
Don’t be afraid to try out new or different cuisines and diets. Have fun with your food. Try out different exercise routines to prevent boredom.
97. Take time off from your cell phone.
Constantly looking at or using your cellphone hampers social interactions and can seriously disrupt your sleep patterns.
98. Listen to your body.
Listen to your bodily cues when you are eating, working, or experiencing pain. While every ache or discomfort may not be important, don’t ignore your bodily signals.
99. Try to live in a clean, pollution-free environment.
Make sure your home environment is hygienic, fresh, and free from toxic chemicals. Try to minimize your contribution to external pollution as well.
100. Set reasonable expectations.
Don’t drive yourself to extremes to fulfill impossible expectations from your body and health. Be the best possible you instead of chasing ideals.