Everyone knows the importance of staying as healthy as possible. If the COVID-19 pandemic taught us anything, it’s that taking care of ourselves should always be a priority. Everything from exercising to eating right can make a big difference in how you feel and the state of your overall health.
But, far too many people tend to think about habitual changes as major things that take up a lot of time. That might be why one study found that 73% of people who set fitness goals as their New Year’s resolutions gave them up.
Whether you want to get fit, lose weight, reduce your risk of illness, or just lead a healthier lifestyle, you don’t need to spend hours a day making changes. There are little things you can do every day that can improve your health, and they’re easy to turn into habits.
The best part? Anyone can do them!
Let’s take a look at five tiny daily actions that can make a big difference in your overall health, so you can get started right away.
1. Swap Your Snacks
Often, becoming healthier is about making better choices. If you’ve ever heard the saying “you are what you eat,” it’s important to understand that there’s some truth to that. One easy way to improve your health is by switching out what you snack on every day. Cut out sugary sodas and juices and replace them with water and a squeeze of natural fruit juice, iced tea, or coconut water.
Instead of chowing down on a bag of potato chips, snack on a few nuts or seeds. They’re rich in Vitamin E, full of healthy fatty acids, and are even beneficial to your eye health. Plus, they’ll satisfy your craving for something crunchy.
2. Keep Things Clean
Think about the items you use every day.
When was the last time you cleaned them?
We don’t mean you need to scrub your floors and wash your windows each day. But, there are cleaning tasks you can (and should) do that take less than five minutes and could keep you safe from harmful bacteria, including:
- Wiping down kitchen countertops with a disinfecting spray
- Cleaning bathroom and kitchen sink faucets
- Wiping down toilet seats
- Disinfecting cupboard handles
- Cleaning your computer keyboard
These are areas that are hot spots for germs, but there are plenty more to consider. Think about the things you and your family touch the most throughout the day, and go beyond your home! For example, your cell phone is one of the dirtiest objects you use each day, with over 25,000 bacteria per square inch. Whatever your hands touch, that bacteria is likely to spread to your phone. So, if you’re using it in the kitchen to read a recipe, think about what could be going into your food. Clean, sanitize, and disinfect your phone regularly, and make sure you’re washing your hands as frequently as possible so your phone doesn’t make you sick.
3. Take Supplements
It’s estimated that 92% of the U.S. population is nutrient deficient. Even if you eat a healthy diet, you may not be getting all of the nutrients your mind and body need. You can change that by taking a multivitamin and other supplements each day.
While getting the majority of your nutrients through your food is important, boosting your intake with vitamins is a great way to improve your health and ensure you’re giving your body exactly what it needs to function properly.
4. Stand Up and Move
If you’ve been sitting for over an hour, take a break. Stand up, stretch, and move around. Several risks come with sitting all day, including:
- Increased risk of heart disease and stroke
- Weight gain
- Back problems
- Varicose veins
- Weakened bones
Even if you exercise every day, you could “undo” your efforts by spending the rest of your time sitting. Stand up and move at least once every hour, and it will make a big difference in your overall health.
5. Practice Mindful Meditation
Improving your health is about more than just taking care of your body. Working on your mental health is just as important, and being more mindful is a great way to do that. Spend just a few minutes each day in a meditative state. You don’t need to sit a certain way, chant anything, or even be in a dark room. You can practice mindfulness anywhere.
Try sitting with your eyes closed and focusing solely on your breathing and how you feel at that exact moment. Thoughts will continue to come, but let them go – like clouds passing by.
Mindfulness can help to reduce anxiety and stress, keep you focused, and improve your mood. You can include it in your daily routine or try it whenever you’re feeling overwhelmed.
As you can see, you don’t have to spend hours each day making drastic changes to improve your health. Small, daily habits can make a big difference. Try including some of these actions into your everyday routine, and enjoy the benefits that come with them.