It can be overwhelming trying to keep up with all of the latest-and-greatest health & wellness trends. And while we do believe in continual growth and education, we have found that these 8 simple habits can serve as the foundation for leading a healthy, happy life. Everything else is just icing on our [healthy but delicious] cake.
8 simple habits to adopt today for a healthier life:
- Take a device break 1 hour before bed.
The National Sleep Foundation recommends that you should stop using electronic devices at least 30 minutes before bedtime. Set a reminder on your phone to stash it somewhere out of reach of your bed.
- Start your morning with natural light exposure.
Resist the urge to check your phone as soon as you wake up and expose your eyes to some natural outdoor light instead. Research shows that the amount of sunlight you receive during the day has a direct impact on how much sleep you get at night. Direct sunlight, especially early in the morning for at least 90 minutes, produces the most benefit for a good night’s sleep.
- Get up & move every hour.
Staying stationary – whether sitting or standing – for long periods of time, can be bad for your health. Set an alarm to get in 3 minutes of movement at least once an hour. Helpful hint: this can be achieved by dancing in place to your favorite song.
- Journal out big emotions.
Writing about stressful experiences can help you manage them in a healthy way, and it has been shown that journaling can improve your mood and give you a greater sense of overall emotional well-being and happiness.
- Stretch your whole body.
Wrist stretches at your desk are great, but make sure you dedicate at least 20 minutes per day to showing your entire body some stretch-y love. Stretching every day helps with your posture and range of motion (which decreases as we age).
- Eat real, unprocessed food.
Everyone has their own need/preference when it comes to daily food intake, but a simple lifelong habit that you can always maintain: when it comes to food, just keep it real.
- Drink water before anything else.
Research shows that mild dehydration corresponding to 1–2% of body weight can negatively affect alertness, concentration, short-term memory, and physical performance. Start every morning with a glass of water to keep your performance levels optimized.
- Get enough sleep for *your* needs.
Your individual sleep drive is genetically predetermined. Your sleep drive determines the speed at which you have a sleep cycle, which means 8 might not be your magic sleep number. Determine how many hours are optimal for you and plan your schedule around *that* number.
Try adopting these habits for at least a week and let us know in the comments if you notice a difference!