To lead a healthy and happy life, it is crucial to ensure that you are eating right and making the right choices. If you work in an office job, where you are seated for most of the day, this is even more important. However, this doesn’t mean you aren’t allowed to treat yourself from time to time!
Here are 8 tips to help you live a healthier life:
- Drink water
In order to prevent us from getting dehydrated, the government recommends that we drink between six and eight glasses of water every day – although, this can differ from individual to individual. It is important to remember that when the weather is warm, or if you are being active, you typically need a couple more glassfuls than the norm.
- Get active
Most adults don’t eat a healthy, balanced diet or get enough exercise, which is highly important. Being overweight or obese can lead to a number of problematic health conditions, such as type 2 diabetes, certain cancers, heart disease and strokes.
Taking part in physical activity frequently can help you to lose or maintain a healthy weight. Being active doesn’t have to mean hours at the gym – there are a number of ways to get active. For example, think about getting off the bus one stop early on the way home from work, and walking.
- Don’t skip breakfast
It has become common over recent years for people to skip breakfast because they think it will help them lose weight. However, this is incorrect as research shows that people who regularly eat breakfast are less likely to be overweight.
A healthy breakfast is an important part of having a balanced diet, as it helps to provide some of the much-needed vitamins and minerals we need for good health. For instance, a wholegrain, low-sugar cereal with fruit is a great example of a healthy and nutritious breakfast.
- Eat your five-a-day (as a minimum)
It is recommended by the NHS that men have around 2,500 calories a day and women should have around 2,000 calories. However, most adults are eating more calories than they need, leaving many overweight and even obese. As a result, it is vital to have a healthy balanced diet, consisting of fruit and vegetables – at least five a day, more if you can.
It sounds difficult, but it is much easier than you think. Think about swapping snacks for a piece of fresh fruit, or adding fruit to your breakfast? Even drinking some juices can count as a portion of your five a day.
- Eat more fish
As many people know, fish is a great source of protein as it contains a variety of vitamins and minerals. It is recommended by medical professionals that we eat at least two portions of fish a week, including at least one portion of ‘oily’ fish, such as salmon, sardines or tuna. Oily fish is good for you as it is full of omega-3 fats, which can help to prevent heart disease.
- Cut down on saturated fat and sugar
We all need some fat in our diets, but it’s vital to make sure we aren’t eating too much of it. Too much fat – saturated fat in particular – can increase the amount of cholesterol in your blood, which can increase the risk of developing serious health problems, such as heart disease.
Much like fats, sugar is found in a lot of the food and drinks we regularly have, such as fruit and milk, which is perfectly fine. However, it is added sugars that we should be cutting down on as they can increase the risk of obesity and tooth decay substantially if they are consumed too often.
The best way to tell whether food and drink contains high fat or sugar rates, is by looking at the food labels on packaging. If the label is red, it is something that should only be had in moderation.
- Eat less salt
Eating too much salt can raise your blood pressure, which means you are more susceptible to developing heart disease or having a stroke. Even if you don’t add salt to your food, you may still be eating too much as it can be found in most of the food we already buy, such as breakfast cereals, soup, bread and sauces.
- Quit smoking
Smoking is a bad habit that can have a wide variety of health problems. Therefore, quitting smoking is a good lifestyle choice to make. There are a variety of ways to help quit smoking, such as nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) or even trying e-cigarettes.
An estimated 2.9 million adults in Great Britain currently use e-cigarettes and of these, 1.5 million people have completely stopped smoking cigarettes, according to the NHS. You can begin by purchasing nicotine vaping liquid from a vape shop, and slowly wean yourself off until you reach 0%.
As a result, leading an active lifestyle and ensuring that you eat a well-balanced diet is vital to ensure you are healthy and happy. This means you are more likely to live longer and less likely to contract serious diseases that can be fatal – a win-win.
So, what are you doing to ensure you are following a healthy lifestyle?