1. Spend more time in nature.
Exposure to natural environments may lower stress and prevent illness. Can it really be that simple? Research is ongoing, but scientific studies do indicate that spending time in nature can actually improve your health. There’s no wrong way to do this—take walks, hit the local trails, go fishing, visit a park or arboretum, or start a garden in your own backyard. Even sitting quietly outdoors is beneficial! The key is just to get out there and enjoy nature as often as you can.
- If you’re looking for a unique hobby to do outdoors, consider bird watching, archery, or mushroom foraging.
- Probiotics contain different strains of bacteria, so it may take some trial and error to figure out which strains benefit you the most.
- You shouldn’t take probiotics if you have a compromised immune system. If you have a serious health condition, talk to your doctor before trying probiotics.
- There’s evidence that gut health may influence your mental health, too. Taking probiotics could potentially help with issues like anxiety and depression.
Eating herbs may protect you from illnesses like cancer and diabetes. Fresh herbs are rich in antioxidants and boast countless other potential health benefits. Best of all, they’re delicious and easy to add to your favorite salads and dishes. To enjoy the most benefits, consume the freshest herbs you can get your hands on. Dried herbs are less potent, but they provide health benefits, too!
- Fresh garlic, fenugreek, and lemongrass may help lower cholesterol. Garlic may also lower blood pressure.
- Fresh onions, chives, leeks, mint, basil, oregano, and sage may help protect against cancer.
- Rosemary, sage, and oregano contain high levels of antioxidants.
Focus on nutrient-rich foods within each food group. A healthy diet boosts your energy, helps you maintain a healthy weight, and lowers your risk of heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Aim to eat a balance of whole grains, lean protein, fruits, veggies, and dairy products every day. Variety is also important! Try new foods and change up your weekly meals so your body gets all the nutrients it needs. A few helpful tips to get you started:
- Bring easy, portable snacks like nuts, bananas, and baby carrots with you to work or school.
- Plan your meals for the week ahead so healthy options are always within reach.
- Prioritize foods that are high-fiber, low-sugar, and low-salt.
- Reach for healthy fats in foods like fish, nuts, and avocados.
- Leafy greens like kale, broccoli, and cabbage are packed with nutrients.
- Avoid saturated fats, hydrogenated oils, refined sugar, and processed foods.
- Be sure to check nutrition labels for serving sizes; proper portioning is important, too.
- How much fluid you need every day depends on factors like your height, weight, activity level, but in general:
- Males need 15.5 cups (3.7 liters) of fluids a day
- Females need 11.5 cups (2.7 liters) of fluids a day
- Wake up and go to sleep at the same time each day (including weekends)
- Get a dose of sunshine in the morning to help set your internal clock
- Create a nightly routine and start winding down an hour before bed
- Take naps or go to bed earlier if you feel tired during the day
- Avoid caffeine at least 6 hours before bed.