Daily routines can be great for keeping us in check, but sometimes we become too accustomed to our ways. When this happens, we can slip into habits that we didn’t even know were harming our health! There’s no quick fix, or temporary change that will make a real impact, it’s all about making daily lifestyle changes. Here are five ways that you can make small adjustments to your everyday life to improve your overall health and well-being.
1) Watch less TV. “Watching TV is to your brain what sitting on the couch is to your body: complete absence of use,” says David Niven, Ph.D., author of The 100 Simple Secrets of Healthy People. Next time you’re thinking about flipping on the TV to kill some time, consider finding some articles to read online about something you’re interested in or letting your imagination get lost in a good novel. Better yet, allow yourself some time for quiet. Give your brain a break and take your time to appreciate all the things in your life you have to be thankful for!
2) Add cranberries to your diet. University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth scientists have linked cranberry consumption to stroke protection. Early evidence suggests that the berries may reduce any oxidation damage to the brain that occurs during a stroke. The antioxidant benefits from consuming cranberries on a regular basis will also reduce free radicals in your body, helping to improve your skin complexion.
3) Listen to slow music at mealtimes. “A recent study found that participants who ate while listening to fast music consumed two more mouthfuls a minute than those who listened to slow music,” says Dr. Niven. “We subconsciously mimic the beat, and the faster you eat, the more likely you are to overeat.”
4) Hold the telephone. Cradling a phone between your ear and shoulder contracts your neck muscles and locks the spinal joints, causing muscle spasms and pain. When we get into a multitask-er mindset, this is an easy habit to make! Instead, hold the receiver or use a speakerphone.
5) Drink tea. A University of Illinois study found that black tea may impede cavity-causing plaque bacteria. To reap the benefits, try swapping out your morning coffee once a week. The natural caffeine in black tea will make it a worthy replacement to get you through your morning. Caffeinated green tea is another great way to start your day. It’s packed with awesome antioxidants and has also been shown to assist with weight loss. Prefer a hot cup before bed? Opt for a decaffeinated blend to help with more restful sleep.
Be change starts with small steps! Looking for more ways to be healthier everyday? Check out our inspiration article for more tips: http://www.everydayhealth.com/columns/johannah-sakimura-nutrition-sleuth/ways-to-make-this-your-healthiest-summer-ever/ .