We all know a thing or two about living a healthy lifestyle. But I guarantee you that the benefits of a healthy lifestyle far more outweigh your expectations.
For most people, the mention of a healthy lifestyle conjures up images of salads or working out. However, there is so much to it than that.
Besides loads of salads and sweating it out at home or at the gym, which is great, the benefits of adopting a healthy lifestyle are insurmountable.
Unfortunately, a lot of people are dealing with physical and mental health issues that can be managed with some lifestyle adjustments to considerably improve the quality of life.
What is a healthy lifestyle, you ask?
Basically, healthy living means incorporating intentional actions for better physical and mental health.
This can be done by incorporating foods that are healthier into your diet and supplementing your diet with exercise.
BENEFITS OF A HEALTHY LIFESTYLE
The best part is, you will start seeing these benefits as soon as you embark on a healthy lifestyle journey. Some of these advantages of adopting a healthy lifestyle are:
1. HELPS TO COMBAT DISEASES
An unhealthy lifestyle puts you at the risk of many lifestyle diseases such as heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, and certain forms of cancer.
Once you start off on a healthy lifestyle, you can keep your cholesterol, blood sugar, and blood pressure within a safe range.
A healthy lifestyle also means kicking out habits such as smoking and heavy drinking.
A July 2019 study with over 196,000 participants published in JAMA showed that participants who embarked on healthy habits had less risk of getting genetically-predisposed dementia.
2. HELPS YOU TO MANAGE YOUR WEIGHT
If part of your new year’s resolutions is to finally get to your ideal healthy weight, a lifestyle adjustment will set you on the right path.
This is because one of the primary benefits of a healthy lifestyle is that you will be able to better manage your weight.
Eating right and exercising regularly, the main pillars of a healthy lifestyle will help you avoid excess weight gain and help you maintain a healthy weight.
3. IMPROVES YOUR GUT HEALTH
Many aspects of a modern lifestyle such as eating processed and high-sugar foods, increased levels of stress, and unhealthy sleep patterns damage the gut microbiome.
This refers to the plethora of bacteria in the stomach, many of which are beneficial for optimum functioning.
When you replace these habits with healthier choices by incorporating exercise, a better diet, and reducing your stress levels, the gut microbiome thrives.
For instance, when you limit your booze intake, there is less inflammation in your gut and nutrients are better absorbed.
According to a study published in the Journal of Translational Medicine, a diet containing more fiber, vegetables, lean protein, fermented foods beneficially regulate gut health.
Therefore, you get to enjoy the benefits of a healthy lifestyle such as the minimized risk of diseases, better sleep, and fewer food intolerances.
4. GIVES YOU A GREAT BOOST OF ENERGY
Among the benefits of a healthy lifestyle is a noticeable boost in energy.
That constant lethargic feeling after eating a lot of unhealthy foods should definitely prompt you to get started on healthy living.
Additionally, a mostly sedentary lifestyle is also a culprit when it comes to your energy levels.
So, if you find that you are constantly tired, then you need to check how your lifestyle is contributing to that.
Simply incorporating healthy habits such as a brisk walk every day for at least 30 minutes will go a long way in boosting your energy as it builds your muscle strength.
Gradually incorporate these simple home workouts in your routine for even better results, you do not need an expensive gym membership to lead a more active life.
5. IMPROVES LIFESPAN
You want to live a full healthy life, right? Well, when you practice healthy living or a healthy lifestyle, you boost your chances of a long life.
A January 2020 study found that a healthy lifestyle was associated with a 7.4 to 15.7 years longer life expectancy at 50 years. It also reported that these extra years were free of chronic illnesses.
6. SAVES YOU MONEY
Some diseases like heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, and some forms of cancer are directly related to your diet.
Aside from the physical and mental toll they take on a person and their families, they add a huge financial burden to treat or manage them.
When you embark on healthy living by making healthier dietary choices you save yourself a lot of potential healthcare costs.
A 2019 study published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics on people who began eating healthier by adopting a Mediterranean diet registered a decrease in chronic health conditions.
By simply adding whole grains, fish, nuts, and veggies to their diet, the participants saved themselves billions of dollars in the potential cost of healthcare.
7. BETTER MENTAL HEALTH
In addition to improving your physical health, a healthy lifestyle does great wonders for your mental health.
For instance, exercise improves mental health by reducing anxiety, depression while improving self-esteem and cognitive functions.
This is because exercise is known to release endorphins into your body which trigger positive feelings.
With just 30 minutes of moderate-intensity workouts such as brisk walking thrice a week, you will improve your mental health.
8. HIGHER PRODUCTIVITY
There are a lot of benefits of a healthy lifestyle that trickle into each other.
When you decide to incorporate healthy habits into your daily life, you get increased productivity as a bonus.
This is because you will sleep better and will be in a better mood. You will have also gotten rid of feelings of lethargy.
This then means that you will be able to handle your daily activities much more productively as you will have more energy to do so.
To get you started, try to improve your sleep quality, which is one of the ways you can adopt a healthy lifestyle.
You can do this by sticking to a bedtime schedule, reducing your caffeine intake, and creating a comfortable sleeping environment.
9. IMPROVES YOUR MOOD CONSIDERABLY
Research shows that there are certainly long-term positive effects of eating right as you adopt a healthy lifestyle. Among these effects is a better mood.
Healthy foods can help stabilize your moods and keep mental health illnesses at bay. Once you get into a habit of eating healthy, your brain will pick up the cues.
Hence, you will be much happier than if you reached an unhealthy snack to make yourself feel better.
10. IMPROVED MEMORY
If you have noticed that your memory is not as sharp as it used to be, it could boil down your lifestyle.
This is because your diet can help or harm your cognitive well-being.
Research suggests that what you eat will have an impact on your ability to remember. Your diet may also put you at risk of dementia or Alzheimer’s.
As you age, you need to be wary of this and it is, therefore, advisable to develop a healthy lifestyle.
You can do this by eating right, exercising, quitting smoking, and maintaining a healthy weight.
HOW DO YOU ACHIEVE A HEALTHY LIFESTYLE?
If you want to reap the benefits of a healthy lifestyle, then a few lifestyle adjustments are what you need to get started. There are three main things to be considered.
First, you need to look at your diet. Is it helping or sabotaging your dreams for a healthier lifestyle?
A healthy diet includes whole grains, lean meats, low-fat dairy products, fruit, and vegetables. And as per usual, you need to stay hydrated. Your gut and the rest of your body will thank you.
Secondly, you need to incorporate some kind of exercise into your daily routine.
Regular physical exercise keeps off diseases, helps with your weight, and gives you a burst of endorphins to keep you in a positive mood.
Thirdly, you need to work on your mental health, which will be influenced by the two key pillars of a healthy lifestyle; diet and exercise.
Frankly, letting go of an unhealthy lifestyle is not the easiest thing in the world.
It may mean letting go of some of your favorite things, like simply reaching out for a packet of chips to keep away the hunger pangs.
That said, healthy habits are not that hard to pick up either if you are committed and consistent.
And hey, if you do need the motivation, just keep in mind these 10 benefits of a healthy lifestyle and what they will do for your overall health. You’ll be on the path to a healthier you in no time![related_posts_by_tax posts_per_page="4"]