I know I’ve been writing about some heavy-ish topics lately – all the emotional eating and self love & responsibility stuff that has to happen in order for us to transform our lives (and boy do I think those things are important) but since it’s crazy hot summer I thought I’d send out something a little less heavy and easier to digest! Today I’m sharing 5 super simple things you can do daily to increase your health and I’m challenging you to do them.
They’re super simple – there’s no reason why you and I can’t do every single one of these starting right now.
So what do you say? Will you accept this challenge?
5 Simple Changes You Can Do Daily to Increase Your Health
1. Add one more vegetable to your daily diet. Very few people eat enough vegetables. Even those of us that like them find some days it’s just hard to fit them in. Vegetables are one of the most nutrient dense foods on the planet and are low in calories so they won’t contribute to weight gain. Choose something green or vibrantly colored. Doesn’t matter if it’s fresh, frozen or canned (just choose BPA free cans if you can) and they can be cooked or raw. Some folks digest cooked vegetables easier than raw so if that’s what it takes to get you to eat them – cook away!
2. Cut back on some of the sugar from your diet. I know. I really should be recommending that you cut out all processed sugars from your diet (and sincerely I do, but I want to meet people where they are and help them get from A to Z without falling off a cliff on the way!). Take a look at some of the foods you eat on a daily basis – coffee in the morning, a yogurt a breakfast, salad with dressing at lunch etc. Could you cut down from 2 or 3 sugars per cup of coffee to 1 or 2? Could you try a different brand of yogurt that has a few less grams of sugar added? How about the salad dressing? Most have lots of sugar added – straight up extra virgin olive oil and a vinegar or lemon juice will do the trick for 0 g of sugar. Cut down the sugar, just a little on the foods you consume every day and it will make a big difference over time (and you won’t even really miss it!).
3. Add in one more glass of water to whatever you are drinking currently. Some of us are awesome about drinking enough (gold star here!), while others seem to really struggle with it. Water is vital! Our bodies use it for so many different processes: flushing waste, transporting proteins and carbs in our blood, regulating our body temperature and more. Without enough of it, you’ll feel sluggish and are more likely to mistake thirst for hunger, leading to eating food we don’t really need (and often of the variety that’s not so great for us). If you don’t like water, try adding fresh lemon, lime, mint leaves or grated ginger to it!
4. Add in 5 minutes of exercise to whatever you are doing now. Odds are, you are someone who gets a decent amount of exercise or you are someone who gets virtually none. If you are in the later category, you may see starting an exercise routine as something very difficult to start with the demands of your current lifestyle. In that case, most people will opt for never beginning at all, rather than doing what they can, when they can. Why? Why settle for 0?? What’s stopping you from doing something, anything? Get up right now and walk for 5 minutes – even if it means doing circles around the office or in your kitchen. Drop down to the floor and do a few pushups, squats and tricep dips. Maybe throw in a few crunches. No change or clothes or equipment needed. Toddlers and babies can be included. Just commit to 5 minutes! If you can do more, good for you! If you can’t, at least you did 5 minutes which is more than a lot of people out there! At first, it may make you more tired, but with a little time (commit to at least 21 days in a row!) it will become a habit you can’t live without and you may even find ways to add more time to your routine.
5. Do one stress relieving self-care type of activity every day. Stress is one of the biggest killers in this country and yet most of us do little to manage it. If you were diagnosed with diabetes, you would take steps to control it. If you were diagnosed with MS, you would do all that you could to increase the quality and length of your life. So why do we pretend that stress doesn’t exist? It’s really silly! Sometimes we can’t reduce the causes of stress in our lives (family, work etc) but we can do something about relieving that stress on a regular basis. Everyone gets stress relief from different things – exercise, laughing with friends, massage, long bath, reading a good book, holding hands, using essential oils, meditation, having a cup of tea etc. It doesn’t matter what it is – find a couple of things that help you feel more relaxed and give yourself permission to do one every single day, even if you only get a few minutes of it. Treat it like the priority it is – your stress relief activities can work like preventative medication!
There you have it. 5 simple things you can do right now! Do you think you can make these changes? Why or why not? What can you do to make them a part of your day? If you like reading this type of content please sign up for my email list in the green box below and share with anyone who you think may also benefit from it.
(Ps. Did you do last week’s homework? I’d love to hear from you if you did!)