5 SMALL changes that can make a BIG impact on your life
We know that eating well and exercising are crucial in maintaining good health, but there are a few other areas that are often overlooked which can greatly improve our well-being and prevent some illnesses.
By gradually making some conscious modifications, we can gradually adapt to new habits that we can keep for the long run and become second nature. These can significantly improve our health and avoid acquiring some common illnesses that are ailing our population.
Among the 5 areas that can make a difference are:
SUGAR – Sugar has been found to be the culprit in many ailments. Obesity and heart disease are the most common results. By cutting sugar you also cut your fat intake. Sugar has found its way into many foods that we don’t expect it to be. Smoothies (that are usually regarded as healthy) and processed foods (boxed, bagged or canned) may have an unhealthy portion of sugar.
It has also been disguised under other names as sucrose, glucose, fructose, maltose, molasses, and corn syrup.
*If you have a sweet tooth, eat fruit. It contains natural sugar but it’s also packed with additional good-for-you nutrients.
*Make a habit of reading labels carefully and keep in mind other names used to disguise sugar. Ingredients are listed in the amount contained (greatest first). If sugar is one of the first items, don’t buy it.
*Reduce the sugar in your coffee just a bit everyday so you don’t notice it. After a while, you will be surprised at how little it takes to sweeten.
*Reduce soda consumption. 1 can contain way more than the daily limit.
*Experiment with other ingredients like cinnamon or lemon juice to add flavor to your beverages or food.
GOOD ORAL HYGIENE – Oral bacteria can contribute to heart attacks, strokes, clogged arteries, and blood clots. It even makes it difficult for diabetics to control blood sugar. By preventing gum disease expectant mothers can reduce the risks of premature birth and low birth rates. Oral Bacteria travels into the bloodstream casing havoc, which can result in arthritis, diabetes, kidney disease, heart disease, or cancer.
*Keep toothbrush and floss handy.
*Brush after meals but at least twice a day, gently with a soft brush to prevent buildup of plaque.
*Floss at least once a day.
*When not able to brush, chew on a sugar-free, ADA approved gum.
*Use an ADA approved rinse
*Get professional cleanings at least twice a year.
MEDIATION – These days it seems more and more we are being pulled in all directions. High stress increases sugar in the body. Meditation has been used for centuries and helps to get grounded and centered. There are simple techniques to reduce stress and increase mind / body / soul well-being.
Meditation not only reduces stress, depression, and anxiety but also has been found to also improve learning, memory, problem solving, and decision-making.
To improve sleep, relationships, and lower blood pressure, find at least 5 minutes in the day be in the present moment. By not worrying about the future or dwelling in the past for a few minutes each day while focusing on your breath, you can re-boost and continue the tasks of the day.
WATER – We know that water is essential to life but some of us just can’t seem to consciously drink enough. We take water for granted but our bodies are ¾ water. The body can go for weeks without food, but only a few days without water. It is necessary for the body to function properly especially the organs.
Cells and tissues crave water while the blood stream is continuously circulating around the body dropping off necessary nutrients and picking up unneeded waste. Among some of the ailments it prevents are kidney stones, cancer, fatigue, headaches, and depression.
To avoid buying soda and stay hydrated, find a water bottle you like and that is convenient to carry around at all times. Try not to use sweeteners. Instead you can flavor the water with fresh fruit. Your body will thank you!
SLEEP – Not getting enough sleep can affect your thinking, how you feel and behave, as well as your memory and learning. Sleeping restores your metabolic harmony and may reduce cravings.
Get enough rest and you will have more energy. While lack of sleep can cause you to be overweight and increase the risk of hypertension, getting enough sleep will help to have a healthy blood pressure, good cholesterol levels and lower the risk of heart disease.