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We all have different ideas of what it means to be “healthy.” For some people, the term “healthy” summons up images of 30-day juice cleanses, or 90-day intense exercise routines designed to strip away body fat.
The thing is, “health” can’t be meaningfully defined in terms of things that you do for a brief period of time, or one off strenuous exercise routines. The reason for this is because the body is a constantly adapting system, that becomes better-functioning or worse-functioning, depending on a multitude of factors.
Being healthy – as in, being free of disease, feeling good, and being in decent physical condition – is, therefore, a matter of adopting the kinds of lifestyles that promote consistent wellness in the body. Health is about habits, rather than big, isolated actions.
Sure, sometimes you may be afflicted by serious health conditions that can be resolved by rapid and short-term interventions, and it’s good to know that emergency healthcare services such as Grand View Urgent Care exist. But these are the exceptions that prove the rule.
So, here are some of the most important lifestyle habits for keeping healthy, consistently.
Get plenty of sleep every night
Everyone knows that getting enough sleep feels good, and getting too little feels bad.
Recent research, though, has found that getting too little sleep ruins your immune system, damages organ health, and massively increases your risk of dying from all causes.
Sleeping too little also ruins your memory and mood.
It’s important to understand that sleep isn’t just some luxury that you enjoy when you’re not too busy at work. It’s an incredibly important process that keeps you healthy. Get enough of it each night.
Eat a balanced, whole foods diet, with plenty of variety
There aren’t many things that virtually all diet gurus agree on – but the fact that processed food is unhealthy is one of those areas of common consensus.
Studies have found that common ingredients in processed meals, like high fructose corn syrup, are linked to metabolic issues, obesity, and more.
Other research – such as that conducted by Tim Spector – shows that eating only fast food devastates the healthy microbes in your gut.
To remain as healthy as possible, eat a balanced whole foods diet, with plenty of variety. Cook for yourself, from scratch.
Do a lot of low-level moving around during the day
You might have noticed that in the last few years there have been plenty of headlines proclaiming that “sitting is the new smoking.”
This happened after the release of certain studies, which showed that too much time spent sitting down each day – even if you go to the gym after work – damages your health in all areas, and shortens your life expectancy.
The solution seems to be doing a lot of low-level moving around during the day. That might mean working at a standing desk, and taking a casual stroll for a few minutes every hour at work, and cycling to and from the office.