Unhealthy habits can quickly add up, causing you to become less healthy both physically and mentally over time. If you’re not careful, habits, like not getting enough sleep or eating unhealthy foods, can result in larger issues like obesity or high blood pressure down the road, which can severely limit your quality of life and lifespan. Fortunately, though, it’s not too late to kick unhealthy habits to the curb and start living a healthier life today with these 10 tips.
Smoking is one of those unhealthy habits that many smokers don’t think about much until they decide to quit. Then, suddenly it becomes very important. Try quitting today and you’ll see what we mean.
Cigarettes have more than 4,000 chemicals in them including cyanide, formaldehyde, and ammonia. Smoking also increases your risk of developing heart disease, lung cancer, and diabetes not to mention yellow teeth! So why not give up cigarettes?
Drinking in excess is one of America’s most widespread bad habits. It’s harmful on multiple levels, from those health concerns you may have heard about like increased risk of cancer to a negative impact on your personal life and relationships. Plus, it increases your chances of being involved in an accident.
On top of all that, alcohol can take away precious time from activities that could actually help you live longer. Limit yourself to one drink per day or save it for special occasions.
3. Junk Food
The average American consumes more than 20 pounds of junk food each year. This adds up to thousands of extra calories that take you further away from your health goals.
If you’re trying to lose weight, kick those bad habits now. A healthy life means cutting out junk foods and reducing your intake of saturated fats and sugars.
Replace those fatty meals with vegetables, lean meats, nuts, seeds, and legumes. The more natural options you eat on a daily basis, the better off you’ll be.
4. Binge Eating
Do you eat more when you’re sad or stressed? Binge eating can happen in private, but often it’s something we do out in public. You may have an unhealthy relationship with food even if you aren’t technically overweight—because of these secret binges and extra treats.
5. Fast Food
Think twice before going through that drive-thru. Why? For starters, fast food is often loaded with trans fats, which your body converts into unhealthy fats.
Research also shows that people who eat fast food are more likely to be overweight than those who don’t. What’s more, regularly chowing down on high-calorie burgers and fries can lead to insulin resistance, a major risk factor for type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
And one large meal at McDonald’s with its super-size fries, Coca-Cola (330 calories), and Big Mac (600 calories) can send your calorie count over 1,200 for one day! Ouch! Stick with whole foods like these easy recipes instead.
Multitasking is one of those myths that just won’t die. Our brains aren’t built to do several things at once, and when we try it can actually lead to worse performance in all areas. So start kicking your habit today. Try doing just one thing at a time turn off all distractions, put your phone on silent and stick with it!
7. Sitting at Work All Day
Sitting at your desk all day comes with numerous health risks. Studies have shown that sitting for more than six hours a day will lead to obesity, heart disease, and other serious health issues.
It’s not just your body you need to worry about, but also your mind. Sitting too much is linked to depression and anxiety. So make sure you get up from your desk every hour or so and stretch out your legs you’ll feel better mentally and physically.
8. Multitasking At Home
Not only is multitasking bad for your focus, but it can also have major consequences on your home life. It’s hard enough to keep up with everything around the house when you do just one thing at a time, but there are certain activities that simply cannot be done effectively if you’re also trying to cook or clean.
Reduce your stress levels by putting away distractions and staying in one room until it’s completely finished.
Let’s face it, most of what we watch on TV isn’t exactly good for us. If you want your body to be as healthy as possible, you should limit your television watching time.
Try not to watch more than an hour of TV at a time. Also, try limiting yourself to two or three episodes of your favorite show per week if that is!
10. Poor Sleep Hygiene
Poor sleep can lead to weight gain, lack of focus, and even cardiovascular problems. Don’t wait until you develop an insomniac habit or other health issue before putting in some effort to improve your sleep start now!
Start with these two simple steps: Avoid screen time at least an hour before bedtime (and limit the use of screens in general).
Take a warm bath 90 minutes before bed (the heat will help relax you and make it easier to get into a deep sleep).