According to the National Institute of Mental Health, mental illness affects upwards of 10 million people each year. Two of the most common mental illnesses are anxiety and depression. When mental health isn’t properly cared for, it can increase a person’s risk of developing physical health conditions.
Now more than ever, it’s important to implement health-conscious decisions.
Living a healthy lifestyle can drastically improve your life, enhancing mental, physical, and overall well-being. Unfortunately, many find living a healthy lifestyle to be challenging. It doesn’t have to be.
Keep reading to learn about five easy health-conscious decisions that will make you feel better.
- Focus on Clean Eating
Not surprisingly, healthy eating is one of the best ways to enhance wellness. Contrary to popular belief, clean eating isn’t synonymous with a restrictive diet. Instead, it prioritizes a balanced diet.
Balanced diets emphasize fruits, vegetables, lean protein, and whole grains. Most foods should be low in fats, sodium, and added sugars. A balanced diet still allows you to eat your favorite foods but suggests eating them in moderation.
Healthy eating contributes to healthy weight management.
Reducing overweight and obesity risks similarly reduce the risk for other harmful mental and physical health conditions.
- Physical Activity
Incorporating regular exercise is the key to better living.
Most individuals should aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity every day. Exercise promotes the release of brain chemicals that make us feel happy. Furthermore, exercise reduces the risk of developing chronic health conditions.
This is often the most challenging lifestyle habit to incorporate, as people find it difficult to fit it into a daily schedule.
However, the 30 minutes don’t have to be completed all at once. It can be broken down into smaller more manageable sessions. Other ways of staying accountable include practicing enjoyable physical activity or engaging in physical activity with a friend.
- Get Enough Sleep
When the body doesn’t get enough sleep, it can weaken the immune system. A lack of sleep can impact brain functioning. It may also increase the risk of symptoms of anxiety and depression.
For healthy functioning, adults should get at least 7 hours of sleep every night.
- Living Sustainably
Living sustainably means actively trying to reduce the use of Earth’s natural resources.
Sustainability benefits the environment by contributing to cleaner air and water. It also reduces waste and pollution. Respiratory health diseases, like asthma, are common due to pollution.
Reducing these environmental factors can thus enhance our well-being.
Thankfully, there are plenty of resources that offer advice for sustainable living. For example, https://iugis.com/blog/a-circular-economy-for-zero-waste provides tips for reducing food, energy, and water waste. In addition to greener living, other organizations emphasize the importance of environmental protection and preventing climate change.
- Finding a Health-Conscious Community
It is much easier to make health-conscious decisions when you’re surrounded by other health-conscious individuals.
Health-conscious friends and family members can encourage healthy lifestyle habits. Additionally, finding a healthy community can improve mood, reduce stress, and act as a support system through hard times.
Lastly, life is much more enjoyable when we have people to share it with.
Practice Makes Perfect
You can’t build a healthy lifestyle overnight. Rather, it takes time and practice incorporating healthy habits. I recommend baby steps, such as experimenting with these five health-conscious decisions.
You’ll find the strategies that work best for you.
For more tips toward healthy living, check out the rest of our site!