Sometimes even I need motivation, so I am happy to showcase this collaborative guest post which offers some fantastic tips on how you can easily start living a healthier lifestyle, just in time for summer!
It’s fair to say 2017 has been a pretty good year so far. Spring has blessed us with some glorious weather, which fills you with positive energy that makes anything seem possible. With that in mind, I’ve written a few tips to help you towards using that energy productively.
Trying to develop a healthier lifestyle doesn’t have to involve strict dieting or gruelling fitness regimes. The aim is not to suggest drastic changes to the way you currently live, but to offer positive alternatives, good habits and healthy products that anyone will feel the benefits from.
Coconut oil used to be a luxury for most people. I remember when you couldn’t find it in England or it was just far too expensive. Now, though, most high street supermarkets stock it. It’s no longer an unaffordable superfood like chia seeds, goji berries or wheatgrass, so there’s no excuse to not include it in your weekly shop.
In our house, we primarily use it for cooking, as it is beneficial for your heart and high in short and medium-chain fatty acids. This means your body is better equipped to break them down naturally, so they are less likely to make you gain weight. This is what people often refer to as good fats, like those in nuts and avocados.
On top of this, coconut oil can be used as a beauty product. It works fantastically as a moisturiser for dry skin, as well as reducing the effects of ageing. We also use it on hair as a conditioner, as well as throwing a few spoonfuls in the bath every now and again for a DIY luxury bath feeling. It even strengthens your immune system and is good for your teeth, too. If it’s a healthier life you’re after, coconut oil is your best friend!
Water, water, water
Drinking enough water is something I’m really big on. While it is fairly obvious we need to drink water to stay hydrated, apparently as much as 75% of us don’t drink enough. Keeping hydrated is key to helping our bodies process nutrients and repair cells. Dehydration can prevent our brains working at full capacity, too, as well as causing us to feel lethargic.
Try and drink somewhere between two to three pints a day. If you’re not already doing this, I promise that after just a few weeks, you’ll be able to feel a difference. It’s definitely the easiest and cheapest health tip you’ll ever get, so make good use of it!
Kicking Bad Habits
Bad habits can be a range of things — everyone’s got them. Whether it’s smoking, drinking too much, getting a taxi instead of walking, or eating too many takeaways, a little self-control and determination can save you money and make you healthier, too.
Quitting smoking is a particularly difficult habit to stop. There just hasn’t been many helpful alternatives until recently, but just about everyone knows what an electronic cigarette is by now. The NHS even recommends an electronic cigarette as a tool to give up traditional cigarette smoking. You can even buy e-liquids for just £1 now, making it very cheap and a considerably healthier alternative to smoking tobacco.
Practising Cognitive Exercise
My last — and probably most unorthodox tip — is to practise a form of cognitive clarity exercise. This is similar to the effects of meditation in that it helps you to clear your mind. Clearing your mind allows you to process information more effectively, reducing stress and giving you more time in the day to think healthy, positive thoughts.
My technique is to dedicate a part of my day to processing information. Writing a to-do list at the start of every day and a diary entry at the end of every day is a great way to start. A to-do list helps you order your day, preventing you wasting time and energy on thinking: ‘what’s next?’ A diary in the evening gives value to the emotional aspects of your day. Who did you talk to? How did your day go? What emotions did you feel and why? This really helps me to go to sleep without worrying about lots of things.
I’ve chosen these tips because, for the most part, they are simple and easy to achieve. They are not fads that will come and go; they deserve a permanent place in your life. By following them, they truly can help you to achieve a healthier lifestyle.