5 Small Tweaks That Will Improve Your Health (And Life) In 2018
It’s human nature to get stuck in our ways of doing things. We find something that works for us, and we stick to it. If it ain’t broke don’t fix it right? But what if your daily routine isn’t broken but a little worn out, and you aren’t getting the benefits from it that you once did?
The good news is, upgrading your life doesn’t require huge changes. There are many small ways we can all incorporate healthy daily practises without having to do 5 spin classes back-to-back or surviving on kale for the rest of your life.
Here are five tweaks that can really make a difference to our health and wellbeing.
Smashing the recommended 8 glasses of water a day can be hard work unless you count lattes in the quota. But according to nutritionist Samantha Gemmell, it’s not just getting that water down the hatch, it’s about when you drink it too.
“We should actually all be drinking water in between meals rather than with our meals” Sam tells us. “Drinking water with our food dilutes our stomach acid, meaning we don’t get the most from what we are ingesting.”
#2 Get some light in your life
According to a 2014 survey by the Weather Channel in the UK, 1 in 3 people suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). In Australia, we’re lucky to have sunlight aplenty to boost us – so make the most of it.
Sam says expose yourself to daylight as soon as you wake to help regulate the body’s circadian rhythms. “Also get a dose in the middle of the day when UV balance is best for vitamin D production and lowest for UVA (the melanoma causing rays.)” Ten minutes will do.
#3 Switch off those screens
Who’s guilty of lying in bed checking Facebook, just in case you’ve missed some vital update in the minutes before we drift off? If it’s not social media, it might be a last-minute work email, or another level of Candy Crush.
But did you know the damage these devices do to our natural sleep patterns? The phone, reading on Kindle and even TV watching are all hindering a good night’s sleep due to the blue light they emit, telling our brain it’s still daytime.
“Exposing your eyes to this light can delay the production of melatonin leaving you awake for longer,” GP Dr Chloe Kindred explains.
She agrees with The National Sleep Foundation, who suggest turning devices off an hour before bed to wind down. She suggests having a warm shower or reading an actual book(!) instead.
#4 The two C’s
Two little super foods we can add into our daily routines are cherries and cinnamon. Sam says both tart cherry juice and cherries themselves are a natural source of the chemical melatonin that promotes deep sleep.
Cinnamon is a great little spice to add to everything from a curry to a coffee. “It not only tastes yum and adds sweetness but it helps balance blood sugar levels, preventing energy spikes and crashes after a sweet treat,” she says.
#5 My three pearls of wisdom
I’m no health and wellbeing expert but I am an expert on finding ways to make my life better. And personally three things have helped me mentally and physically achieve this:
- Green shakes
Ok, I know I said no kale but a little bit in a shake has done wonders for my energy levels and productivity. In a nutshell: a cup of water, banana, chunk of ginger, sprinkle of cinnamon and turmeric, a teaspoon of avo for creaminess, juice of half a lemon, a handful of spinach, a handful of kale and some ice cubes. Blend and done. Watch your halo shine for eating your greens.
- Making my bed
I’m far from having OCD but if my house is a mess, especially my room, I’m a mess. By keeping my room clean and making my bed every morning I feel fresh and ready for the day. I strongly believe that our surroundings mirror the way we feel about ourselves and life in general.
- Fresh flowers
Having flowers in my environment makes me content. They look great, smell awesome and while it may be something I’d treat myself to once a week rather than every day, I get satisfaction from having them in my space daily. If I’m broke, I’ll just pick some from the side of the road.
A published freelance writer from print to online, Katy’s passion is honest authentic writing. From the mundane experience to a sensational observation, Katy always finds a way to voice what she sees. Relatable and quirky, she writes with warmth and familiarity. She also loves lists, matching socks and edamame beans.