11 Simple Things Anyone can do to Live a Healthier Life
Do you ever get to this time of year and find yourself overwhelmed? Christmas is coming, if you have children or grandchildren, you have the endless end of year functions, and everything and everywhere is so much busier. Life at this time of year can be stressful, and sometimes a little too much for our bodies and minds to handle. Our physical response to stress is a release of hormones that affect our blood pressure, heart rate, breathing, digestion, and our focus and concentration. Whilst our bodies can handle this initially, when it’s triggered more frequently, we burn out. This response places a burden on our mitochondria, and drains our internal reserves.
We spoke to Expert Nutritionist and Naturopath Stephen Eddey to see if there is anything we can do, to help our stress levels as we head towards Christmas (and any time of the year). Stephen has pulled together 11 very simple things anyone can do to help live a healthier life – read on below. Even if you incorporate a few of these things, you should see an improvement in your stress levels and health in general.
Do you have less energy? Get more sleep!
Our bodies are made to repair and restore our systems to full charge as we sleep. To keep optimal energy throughout the day it’s important to get your full 8 hours. If you have less energy throughout the day, your body is trying to tell you something.
Exercising doesn’t have to be intense or exhausting. Find workouts or exercises that suit your athletic ability and keep you comfortable. As long as you’re moving, your body will thank you.
I have written about the health benefits of Ubiquinol before. Ubiquinol is the active form of Coenzyme Q10 which is necessary for the production of energy in every cell in our body and is a powerful antioxidant (1). Ubiquinol can assist with heart health, energy and is shown to keep you younger for longer (2)(3).
Flavour With Spices
This doesn’t have to be spicy spices (but it can be). Many herbs and spices are medicines for the body. They are dried concentrated plants and are packed with beneficial anti-oxidants. Why not spice up your dishes?
Healthy Mind- Healthy Body
Focusing on breathing work and mindfulness has been shown to lower blood pressure and cortisol levels, improve your immune function and improve brain blood flow. Why not take some “me time” for you?
Have Long and Short Term Goals
Whether your goal is to go on a holiday or lose weight, having something to look forward to or work towards can keep your mind active and healthy. Choose a goal that is achievable, and work towards it.
Having a pet!
The benefits of having a pet can include lower stress, decreased blood pressure, and lower cholesterol levels from increased walking. Plus having something to show you unconditional love and affection is pretty fun.
Maintaining a healthy diet
Plants are good for you. Veggies provide your body with essential vitamins, fibres and antioxidants that it need. Also making sure that you have a good ratio of meats in your diet to help with heart health and keep iron levels strong.
Choose walking over driving
This comes hand in hand with getting your body moving. An easy way to do this is leaving 5 minutes earlier and getting a light walk instead of driving. Not only are you getting your body moving but it’s a good opportunity to practice some mindfulness.
House plants can improve air quality, can help reduce stress and create a space of well-being and can assist in reducing background noise. They also leave your home a lovely space to be in.
Drinking unsweetened tea along with filtered water can hydrate your body and is a powerful antioxidant. Tea is a wonderful beverage for hot or cold days.
Thank you Stephen for these wonderful tips – they really are simple. What do you think of these tips? Can you incorporate them into your daily/bi-weekly routine? Perhaps start with 1 or 2, and build up, after all, every little bit helps.
- Lobo V, Patil A, Phatak A, Chandra N. Free radicals, antioxidants and functional foods: Impact on human health. Pharmacognosy Reviews. 2010;4(8):118-126.
- Onur S, Niklowitz P, Jacobs G, et al. Ubiquinol reduces gamma glutamyltransferase as a marker of oxidative stress in humans. BMC Research Notes. 2014;7:427.
- Fischer, A, et al. Coenzyme Q10 redox state predicts the concentration of c-reactive protein in a large caucasian cohort. Biofactors 2016; 42(3):268-76.