For most of us, making meaningful lifestyle changes to improve our health never seems to rise to a high priority unless something drastic happens. With daily and weekly demands that deal with finances, personal relationships and more, at the end of the day, health seems to be a secondary concern. But here are some tips for little lifestyle changes for better health.
Food, Exercise, Rest
It goes without saying, you need good food (no, fast food is not good food in case you were wondering). You also need exercise (getting up occasionally to go to the fridge is not exercise). You also need rest. Food, exercise, and rest help to condition and recharge your body.
Good food requires multiple visits to the store throughout the month. Shop for fresh food whenever you can. Fresh food does not mean just fruits and vegetables but also lean meats as well, if you eat meat, and juices, dairy products if you eat them. Organic food is generally better as are whole grains. Use your judgement when shopping. Check ingredients. The point is, avoid highly processed foods if you can.
Changing the daily mode of transportation when going short distances to increase the amount of exercise (walking, biking, taking the stairs) guarantees better fitness, and increases energy at an individual pace. A great addition to a weekly regimen would be lap swimming once an improved daily routine has been established. A nearby YMCA offers flexible and affordable access to this low impact activity that works every muscle group. Do not know how to swim? The YMCA can assist with learning a life skill, which will only enhance your new life experience!
Exercise not only promotes good conditioning for the body but also a more restful sleep. Don’t underestimate the benefits of sleep. At a minimum, you should sleep six hours a day. That is the minimum most experts recommend. However, more would be better. Adequate sleep is relative and will vary from person to person, but adequate sleep will help recharge your body and keep you mentally sharp.
Stimulating the Mind – Lifestyle Changes for Better Health
The mind also needs stimulation. Reading and working challenging puzzles, jigsaw and logic problems, keep the mind sharp. Just like the body can be more active without total dependency on machines, so, too, can the mind be made more active. For example, performing mental math as opposed to depending upon a calculator. The mind also needs validation. The best way to accomplish this is to connect with like-minded people on a regular basis. It reinforces thoughts and behaviors through a shared collective consciousness. Alone time supports a more individualized version of this consciousness.
The spirit and mind are more connected to one another than they are to the body. The body may support the brain and the heart, but the mind and spirit feed off each other. They are both about the energy that they give and receive. Mood can affect the way the mind takes a point of view, and a notion can affect the way the spirit feels, all of which affects drawing conclusions and taking appropriate action. Spirituality reconciles the conscience, discerns morality. A solid system, be it a way of life or a way of worship, must be established. Mind and spirit need truth to give action purpose. It promotes peace of mind, which is essential to good overall health. This truth is also relative and may vary from person to person.
The only rush to overall better health is that a more focused and purposeful lifestyle should begin immediately. This does not mean that there is a race to lose a certain amount of weight or to perform a specific number of activities. It is more about changing a lifestyle through renewed perspective. The mantra is eat fresh, depend on machinery less, and always have a place to invigorate the spirit.
This article originally appeared on AboutZenLife.com.