Looking for some healthy habits to incorporate into your daily self-care routine? These easy changes will help you feel great and enjoy life to the fullest, and the best part is that they’re simple enough to start today! Keep reading to see 12 easy changes you can make to improve your long-term health.
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If you want to live life to the fullest and reach your full potential, then it’s imperative that you make your health a priority. After all, it’s much easier to do big things when you feel great and aren’t shackled to your doctor’s office or pharmacy!
Instead of letting poor health limit your ability to live (and I mean REALLY live), why not do things that will promote a lifetime of wellness and good health? It really isn’t as hard as it sounds. In fact, living a healthy lifestyle is pretty easy once you develop some healthy habits!
Today, I want to share with you twelve of my favorite healthy habits that will make a big impact on your overall health. These are easy habits that you can start today even if you’re new to the world of health and wellness!
12 Healthy Habits You Can Start Today
1. Drink more water
Make it your goal to drink eight 8-oz glasses of water every single day. I find that using a pretty bottle helps me drink more water throughout the day.
Sidenote: Sometimes when you feel hungry, you’re actually just thirsty! When you feel a snack craving coming on, drink some water instead. This will help you reach your daily water intake goal, and it will help you avoid constant snacking! Double win!
2. Eat more fruit, vegetables, legumes, whole grains, nuts, and seeds
The real secret to long-term health? Eat more plants and fewer animal products and processed foods!
Josh and I transitioned to a mostly whole food, plant-based diet after learning that it can prevent, halt, and even reverse serious diseases. In fact, this way of eating really did heal Josh’s autoimmune disease and my IBS!
For long-term health, eat an abundance of plant foods including fruit, vegetables, legumes, whole grains, nuts, and seeds in their whole or minimally processed forms. The more colorful the better!
And while you’re at it, reeeeeeally cut back on animal products and processed foods. That includes meat, eggs, dairy, white flour, white sugar, frozen dinners, prepackaged food, fast food, candy, and pastries.
My plant-based shopping list will help you choose a variety of whole plant foods at the grocery store, and you can get it here:
3. Eat at home (and avoid fast-food restaurants like the plague!)
You get bonus points if you eat a healthy, home-cooked meal rather than a frozen dinner!
If you stink at cooking, start with some simple recipes. I highly recommend you check out The Garden Grazer for some easy, healthy recipes. She uses regular ingredients that you can find at just about any grocery store to make flavor-packed meals.
Here are some of our favorite Garden Grazer recipes:
- Minestrone Soup
- Asian Spaghetti
- Avocado Quesadillas
- Quinoa Avocado Kale Power Salad
- Orzo Salad with Spinach and Tomato
- Maple Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts
You can’t go wrong with any of these!
4. Move more throughout the day
It can be hard to keep moving when you work a desk job, but staying sedentary isn’t good for your health. Try to find small ways to incorporate some movement so your body doesn’t stay still all day. I wrote a post that offers plenty of ideas to help you stay active throughout the day if you need a little inspiration!
5. Start an exercise routine
Most adults in America don’t meet the recommended amount of physical activity each week. All it takes is 30 minutes of moderately intense exercise five days per week to get the recommended minimum.
Here are some ideas to get you started:
- Walk on your lunch break or in the evening with your family
- Find exercise channels on YouTube. Some of my favorites are Blogilates, LivestrongWoman, and Tone It Up. Try them all out and see which one works best for you!
- Exercise while you watch TV. You can jump rope (real or imaginary rope), do jumping jacks, or do some muscle strengthening exercises (squats, lunges, pushups, etc.)
- Try Cassey Ho’s PIIT28 workout program. I tried it and immediately fell in love with it! She combines Pilates with high intensity interval training, which results in her own unique fitness blend: Pilates Intense Interval Training, or PIIT for short. I highly recommend you try PIIT28 if you want a program that’s intense, fun, and doesn’t take long to complete each day.
6. Go to bed at a reasonable hour so you get at least eight hours of sleep
Our bodies cannot function optimally without adequate sleep. Aim for a solid eight hours of sleep every single night so your body can perform at its best. And if you just can’t squeeze in eight hours per night, it may be time to unload some of those unnecessary activities and commitments so you can make more time for your health!
7. Reduce your time on social media
It just isn’t healthy to spend hours upon hours of your time on social media.
First, time spent on social media is time not spent doing things that will improve your long-term health such as exercising, cooking healthy food, and sleeping. Second, you rob yourself of meaningful, real-life conversations with the people around you when you choose social media over your family and friends.
Practice being fully present when you’re with others, and limit yourself to a reasonable amount of time on social media when you’re alone. Having social media boundaries ensures that you prioritize your healthy habits in addition to protecting your real-life relationships.
8. Spend some time outside in the sunshine
Vitamin D helps maintain healthy bones and teeth and strengthens our immune system, thus protecting us from diseases such as many types of cancer, diabetes, autoimmune diseases, and osteoporosis. Source.
The best way to get vitamin D? Good old-fashioned sunshine! Spending 10-15 minutes per day in the sun (without sunscreen) is a great way to get vitamin D the natural way. However, to truly get enough vitamin D, you’ll probably need a vitamin D supplement in addition to spending time outside. One 5000 IU capsule of vitamin D3 (not D2) per day is enough.
9. Reduce your time watching TV
Spending hours of your time in front of the television isn’t doing you any favors health-wise. As with social media, time spent watching TV is time not spent doing things that will improve your long-term health such as exercising, cooking healthy food, and sleeping.
Reduce your time watching TV so you can have more time to devote to your daily healthy habits.
All it takes is a few minutes per day to increase your flexibility. This stretching sequence will get you limber in no time:
11. Drink a green smoothie for breakfast
My green smoothie recipe is a cold, frothy, tropical, sweet concoction. I think you’ll love it!
Tropical Green Smoothie Recipe:
- 1 cup spinach or kale, packed
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1 banana, frozen in 2” chunks
- 1 cup frozen pineapple chunks
Blend all ingredients in a blender until smooth. Makes 2 smoothies.
12. Take 15 minutes to do something just for yourself
Running on empty, spreading yourself too thin, doing things for everyone but yourself. Those things are not okay. You have to make time for yourself if you want to ensure your long-term health. Even if all you can spare is fifteen minutes, make sure you take the time to do something just for yourself so you can recharge your batteries.
When you make yourself a priority, you’ll be able to tackle your other obligations with more energy and a positive attitude.
The bottom line? Spend some time doing something you love! Here are some ideas to get you started:
- Take a bath
- Soak your feet in a tub of warm water with a handful of Epsom salt and 3 drops of lavender essential oil
- Read a book
- Flip through your favorite magazine
Final Thoughts on Healthy Habits to Improve Your Health
Living a healthy lifestyle doesn’t have to be complicated. All it takes is a few healthy habits to help you feel incredible from the inside out so you can live life to the fullest.
So go ahead and make your health a priority. Remember, it’s much easier to do big things when you feel great and aren’t shackled to your doctor’s office or pharmacy!
Other Healthy lifestyle Articles You May Enjoy
- Smoothie Prep for Busy Mornings
- 10 Ways to Boost Your Immune System Naturally
- 15 Must-Have Kitchen Items Every Plant-Based Kitchen Needs
- Meal Planning Made Simple (plus a free printable!)
- How to Afford a Healthy Lifestyle on a Budget
- Why We Transitioned to a Mostly Plant-based Lifestyle
What about you? Do you have some healthy habits that I didn’t mention in this list?
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