We all have at least one—a bad habit. But sometimes it can stop being a casual action and start interfering with your health.
A habit is often instinctual and unintentional. The good news is that most of these actions are easy to avoid once you realize you’re doing them. Break these habits to get back to better health!
1. Staying stationary
We spend lots of time sitting down— at a desk, in a car, at a dinner table— so it’s important to make a conscious effort to get up and move! Exercise improves circulation, muscle tone, energy levels, metabolism, and even brain function. Walk to the mailbox, incorporate some simple exercises into your favorite TV show, lunge around the house instead of walking, or even incorporating some subtle exercises at the office.
2. Ignoring labels
Packaging companies are getting more clever with the presentation of their products. By adding buzzwords and phrases like “all-natural” and “GMO-free”, they target the consumer’s desire for a healthy option. As they become more aware of our preferences, we have to become more diligent in our standards. Read the back side label on the packaging— you know, the less pretty side where they hope you won’t look. That’s where the details are, the truth behind the eye-catching front label.
3. Skipping breakfast
Whether you think you are saving time or calories, skipping breakfast isn’t the solution you should lean on. In fact, it sets you up for overeating later in the day— costing you that time, money, and calories you thought you were saving in the morning! Breakfast gives you energy, sets a good rhythm for your metabolism throughout the day, keeps your mind focused, plus helps maintain cholesterol and blood sugar levels all day.
4. Ignoring the water cooler
Water is the cornerstone when it comes to good overall health. The human body is mostly water, which means it plays a part in every major function— digestion, nutrient absorption and transportation, circulation, cellular health are just a few. Drink up!
5. Catching less Zzz’s
Your body does amazing things while you sleep! Besides relaxing the mind and relieving stress, your body physically restores itself from the events of the day. This is also when your immune system sweeps through your body, undisturbed, to wipe out possible threats.
6. Limiting your menu
Eating a variety of foods is important because that is the best way to ensure you’re getting the widest array of essential vitamins and minerals. For example, red and orange vegetables get their color from carotenoids— a powerful antioxidant. Green veggies contain chlorophyll which is a natural detoxifier. Covering a large variety in your diet will help you get a dose of natural vitamins.
7. Eating late
This habit disrupts your health in a few ways. First, and most obvious, is the interference of its natural rhythm— the sleep rhythm is disrupted because your body isn’t doing it’s usual “while you sleep” processes, it’s digesting instead. Not to mention having to get up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night.
8. Neglecting discomfort
Your body knows when something isn’t right, and will give you some signals. Pay attention and heed the warning! Don’t wait until the minor cough has turned into a serious infection, or a pain in your side has spread to other parts of your body. Discomfort is your body’s way of sending up a flare. Don’t be afraid to go to the doctor and ask questions. It could be something that is fixed with a simple home remedy, or there may be an at-home test available to help you get to the bottom of the mystery early on.
9. Skipping social time
Socializing is an important, yet often overlooked, aspect of our mental health. It’s a good way to keep your cognitive function sharp. Friends and family propose new ideas with a different point of view than that of our own. Laughter and lighthearted conversation are also a great way to relieve stress.