Living a healthy lifestyle is as simple as these 5 steps. Add in CONSISTENCY and you will see enormous benefits in your life. Let’s break it down.
- Drink water. The human body is made up of 60% water. Our brain and heart are 73% water, our lungs 83% water, skin 64% water, even our bones are a watery 31%. Drink about 3.7 liters of water per day. This could vary with your size, your activity, and also your climate.
- Eat nutrient dense food. Nutrient dense food is defined as food that is high in nutrients and low in calories. To simplify it, just think REAL food. Skip the processed food, and load up on lots of veggies, fruits, proteins, and healthy fats.
- Move your body. All you have to do is move. This could be walking around your yard or to the mailbox. If you sit for work, get up and move every hour so you are not sedentary. I am not saying go workout every hour. Just get up and move; do a couple of jumping jacks, walk to the kitchen, fold some laundry, go for a walk. Being sedentary is the WORST thing we can do to our bodies. It increases our risk of getting numerous chronic diseases including heart disease, cancer, depression, obesity, and osteoporosis.
- Sleep. Sleep should probably be number 1. Sleep is the foundation of our health. It is so important to get a good night’s sleep. I feel like a broken record on this one. While we sleep our body heals, recovers, memories are stored, and most importantly if we sleep well we have energy to bring our best selves to the table the next morning. We make better choices with food, we move better, we give back to our families and the world better. If we don’t sleep well, our body doesn’t recover. This then affects our immune system, we get sick, or we are just too tired to handle life. We can get run down and eventually we get really sick and have to make changes. I can’t stress this enough PRIORITIZE YOUR SLEEP. Start tracking, asking for help, do what you need to do to get your rest. Your body will thank you and you will see enormous change in your life.
- Breathe. This is another one that should be higher on the list. We can’t live without air. Basically it doesn’t matter how well you eat, sleep or move if you aren’t breathing correctly we won’t get the most benefits out of our healthy lifestyle. I will get into this deeper in another post but here is the CORRECT way to breathe:
- Always breathe through your nose. Your mouth should be closed with your tongue placed on the roof of your mouth near your front teeth.
- Sit up or stand up with correct posture.
- Breathe from your belly. Your shoulders should not be moving. If your shoulders are going up and down you aren’t breathing from your belly.
- Exhale slightly longer than your inhale.
This takes practice and awareness. Practice by sitting and breathing in from your belly for a count of 4 inhale and exhale for a count of 6. You should be breathing through your nose at all times, even when you are working out. Again this will take practice!
Choose one lifestyle habit you want to start working on and start making tiny changes to benefit your body and live your best life. Change doesn’t happen overnight. Any progress is good progress and you should celebrate that. Even if it is moving for 5 minutes more every day, drinking an extra glass of water, or eating less processed food. You can do this!