Fifteen 60-Second Lifestyle Tips to Improve Your Health

Health

If you want to improve your health and longevity, you don’t have to spend a lot of money on a personal trainer or a specialized diet. The following fifteen tips can each be implemented in 60 seconds and they will support your long-term health and wellness.

The Top 60-Second Tips to Boost Your Health

1. Eat Slower

Eating too quickly contributes to indigestion, acid reflux, and digestive discomfort. Try eating your food more slowly and drink more water during your meal. This will improve your digestive health and might help with metabolism and weight loss as well[1].

2. Smaller Meals, But More Often

Despite the popularity of fasting and other food-timing diets in recent years, eating smaller meals with more regularity is a great way to maintain consistent energy levels throughout the day[2]. Eating more, smaller meals is also beneficial for combating spikes in blood sugar and insulin, depending on the nutrient profile of the meals themselves, which may reduce the risk of type-2 diabetes.

One of the best benefits of more, smaller meals is the long-term satiety they provide. If you’re struggling to lose weight and experience a lot of snack cravings, try switching to 5 to 6 smaller meals throughout the day. There will never be a time when you’re more than a few hours away from a meal (either the last one or the next one) and you’ll be far more able to keep to a healthy diet.

3. Keep Your Hands Clean

To many people, this might be an obvious part of any personal hygiene routine, but keeping your hands clean is more important than simply appearing professional. Simply think about all the things you touch in your home – dirty hands transmit all kinds of bacteria which can develop and multiply on surfaces.

Dirty hands are one of the main contributors to unpleasant conditions like diarrhea and other digestive illnesses[3]. Cleaning your hands more often is a simple, effective way to improve your health and the health of those you come into contact with – simply keep hand sanitizer nearby and make sure to clean your hands every few hours or after touching high-bacteria objects like food.

4. Stretch

Stretching and mobility exercises might not give you a six pack or big biceps, but it is a great way to improve joint health and reduce the risk of pain or injury as you age. Stretching during the day is easier than you think, and doing a minute or two of stretching several times a day will contribute to better health, posture, and reduced risk of muscular injury[4].

Learn a few simple, effective stretches for each of the major joints (shoulders, back, knees, hips, ankles) and spend a minute or two on each of them during the day. This is even more important for those who have an active lifestyle and enjoy sports, exercise, or rigorous outdoor activities like hiking. The risk of sport and exercise injuries is increased by tight muscles and poor warm-ups, so be sure to stretch and prepare for exercise effectively[5].

5. Core/Ab Exercises

Core exercises are fantastic for everyone: whether you’re an athlete or want to be healthier, a stronger, more stable core will mean better performance and physical appearance. Improving core strength contributes to better posture, which is essential for reducing the risk of back pain and it improves social and physical attractiveness[6][7].

One of the most underrated uses for core strength is the reduction of many common injuries such as lower back pain and spinal disc compression[8]. Many people become susceptible to these problems with age, and the development of core strength will take some of the strain off of the spine. Core movements themselves tend to decompress the spine and reduce the ‘passive’ load on the soft, gel-like discs between vertebrae. If you’re looking to age well, invest time in strengthening the core now[9].

6. Relax!

As a culture, we spend a lot of time trying to be more energetic and focused, but optimal health requires you to balance this against active relaxation. Think back to the last time you spent time doing nothing, and simply focusing on clearing your mind and unwinding. Whether you suffer from excessive stress at work, home, or training, dedicating time to active relaxation such as meditation or yoga is a great way to improve your mental health and elevate your mood.

Finding time for relaxation is not always easy, but if you simply switch 15 minutes of your current down-time from television to a good book and green tea, you’ll see big changes in the way you feel and in the quality of your sleep. Given the amount of time you spend winding yourself up, this small investment can elevate and regulate your mood, as well as a modest increase in almost all health markers.

7. Drink More Water

Almost 30% of certain age groups (primarily the elderly) are subject to clinical dehydration and even more are below optimal levels[10]. You already know that water is necessary to live but thirst isn’t the only reason you should be drinking: water is essential for nearly every process in the body and dehydration is a serious health risk. Drinking more water improves a wide variety of health markers such as metabolism, digestive health, cognitive ability, weight loss and immune function[11].

8. Drink Green Tea

Green tea is a fantastic addition to the diet and has been part of traditional medicine for millennia. The benefits of green tea are huge, from increased fat metabolism to relaxation, sleep quality, and combatting long-term illness or inflammation[12][13].

9. Effervescent and Fruit-Infused Water

Not only should you be drinking more water, green tea, and other fluids, but you can use these drinks as another method for consuming high-quality nutrients. Consider using fruit or effervescent multivitamins to improve the flavor and health benefits of your water. This can also help if you dislike the taste of water or simply need more variety. To create fruit-infused water, simply put your favorite fruits into a container with water and ice and leave to refrigerate overnight.

10. Socialize

This might come naturally to some more than others, but spending time around other people is one of the best ways to regulate your mental health and reduce anxiety[14]. You don’t need to go out of your way to be sociable all the time, but making an effort to spend time around loved ones and friends for even a few minutes each day will change your life and improve your happiness.

11. Count Your Steps

Step-counting is one of the best ways to work on weight loss and health on a day-to-day basis. There are many ways to measure your steps, from smartphone apps to pedometers, all of which are inexpensive. The number of steps you take in a day is a big contributor to your overall activity – by working on more steps every day you can increase your overall activity and gain the associated health benefits.

Consider simply setting aside some time for walking and reflecting – we’ve talked about the benefits of both, but you might be surprised at the positive physical and psychological health benefits that come from a simple 15-minute walk in the morning. This is a great way to wake yourself up, think about the day ahead, and add steps to your day while also improving your mental health.

12. Spend Time in Nature

This might not be the first thing you think of when you consider health benefits, but spending more time surrounded by nature is great for your mood and your overall health. Consider taking a longer walk to go through parks, fields, and other places where you will be surrounded by nature. The concrete jungle contributes to negative mood among professionals and if you live in a city, this is even more important!

13. Sugar Swaps

This is a simple, well-known way to improve your health and fitness: swap unhealthy snacks for healthy ones. This might sound difficult or obvious, but replacing your daily chocolate bar or pastry with a portion of blueberries or other fruits is an easy way to make a huge change to your diet and overall health. By removing sugary snacks, which have a negative effect on health, and replacing them with nutrient-dense fruits, it is possible to make huge changes to your health and physique with relatively little effort.

Swapping out junk food for healthier, more nutritious snacks will also improve metabolic and digestive health, and it will reduce cravings in the long-term. Simply put, the more positive snack swaps you make in your day-to-day life, the better you will be at regulating your diet and cravings.

14. Avoid Sitting or Slouching

Sitting down is bad for the posture, especially when slouching or sitting at a desk. Standing up, walking around, and generally being on your feet is much better for both health and posture[15]. Standing desks have been popular lately, but something as simple as getting up and walking around during long office hours can give you time to reset your posture and think about moving.

15. Healthy Shakes and Smoothies

Whether you’re strict with your diet or simply trying to tone up and live a healthier lifestyle, preparing yourself a wonderful healthy shake or smoothie is a great way to stay energized throughout the day. This could be as simple as a scoop of protein powder, a handful of spinach, and a banana blended into milk. This is a great way to improve your protein intake and gain the benefits of extra veggies without even tasting them!

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