For many people, a person’s quality of life is defined solely by their standard of living. While a high income is undoubtedly a crucial aspect of enjoying a comfortable life from a financial standpoint, it has little effect on the quality of life. Quality of life extends far beyond one’s earning to include vitality, leisure, the totality of happiness, and most importantly, good health. Our health and well being is our most precious possession. That makes it imperative for us to protect and take care of this valuable asset.
Irrespective of what constitutes a good life for you, it is vital that you adopt some habits that lead to a disease-free life and one which you enjoy living each day. The following are four effective measures you can take to improve your quality of life and make it more enjoyable to live each day.
The significance of a healthy diet can not be overstated when it comes to leading a healthy lifestyle. Good eating habits will help you maintain the ideal body weight, which is a significant factor in warding off the risk of infections and common chronic diseases, including diabetes, heart disease and stroke, hypertension, certain cancers, and more. Besides making your body less prone to these life-threatening diseases, a nutrient-rich diet provides the fuel your brain and body need to function at optimum levels and prevent fatigue, irritability, low energy levels, and mood disorders.
So, what constitutes a healthy and balanced diet? Simply put, it comprises consuming a variety of foods from all foods groups each day. Enhance your intake of fruits and vegetables, whole-grain foods, low-fat dairy products, omega 3’s, and some healthy fats like nuts and seeds.
A healthy diet not only comprises of what you should eat but also foods that you must avoid. Limit your sodium intake as salt can lead to high blood pressure. Substitute it with garlic, lime juice, red pepper flakes, or herbs where possible. Likewise, try to steer clear of ultra-processed foods like chips, cookies, packaged soups, ice cream, frozen meals, and sugary drinks. These contain little to no nutritional benefits and high levels of added sugars, salt, trans-fats, and artificial additives, which can be detrimental to health in the long run.
Whether you take a 30-minute moderate-intensity daily walk or vigorously work out in the gym, regular physical activity is integral to improved brain and body health. Not only does it help trim your waistline, strengthen bones and muscles, and reduce risk factors of various medical conditions, but helps curb depression, relieve stress and anxiety, and improve your overall mood. Physical activity boosts the blood flow to the brain, which helps maintain mental and emotional well-being. It protects your mobility and vitality by slowing down the natural decline in muscle function as you age.
As mentioned, you do not have to be a fitness freak to reap the benefits of daily exercise. Research shows that as little as 15 minutes of daily aerobic exercise, such as a brisk walk or riding a bike, can have a profound effect on enhancing your overall health and reducing the risk of premature death.
In contrast, a sedentary lifestyle can lead to numerous diseases and doubles the risk of early mortality. In a nutshell, being physically active is at the core of leading a healthy and quality life and improve your longevity.
Getting a full night’s sleep is at the core of living a happy and healthy life, as it has a direct impact on your vitality and daily functioning. Lack of sleep takes a toll on your mental health and shortens your life expectancy while putting you at the risk of several medical conditions.
Being sleep-deprived can affect many aspects of life, which includes mood and relationships. It causes stress and increases negative emotions like irritability, anger, and frustration. That could lead to unnecessary conflicts and less satisfying relationships.
Not getting enough sleep hinders your ability to think clearly, hurting your productivity and work performance.
Accordingly, it is vital to give your mind and body the adequate rest it needs to recharge and repair and perform its essential functions optimally.
While we all live busy and fast-paced lives, there must not be anything that takes precedence over the right amount of sleep time. Experts suggest getting at least 7-9 hours of sleep each night for optimal energy levels and a positive mood.
Have trouble falling asleep? Cut out the caffeine later in the day, control the temperature in your room, take a melatonin supplement, or read up some mattress reviews to get a high-performance mattress that supports your spine and posture while sleeping. These are just some of the tacts you can use to get a comfortable sleep.
As per the famous Greek philosopher Aristotle, the ultimate aim and end of our existence is to live a happy life. Whether it is feeling bogged down by work-related pressure, unhappy relationships, or having overwhelming responsibilities to take care of, stress kills your zest for life and induces feelings of misery and frustration. Chronic stress can take a significant toll on your physical and mental well-being and may cause or exacerbate several health issues. These include but are not limited to anxiety, depression, cardiovascular disease, insomnia, and personality disorders.
While we all desire a stress-free life, the fact is that life is full of struggles that can often get overwhelmingly difficult to face. Accordingly, it is crucial to practice some coping strategies to deal with stressful situations and live a happy life.
Mindfulness meditation, deep breathing, and yoga are powerful relaxation techniques that can help provide relief by creating mental clarity and calmness.
Exercising will reduce stress hormones by facilitating the production of endorphins- the chemical responsible for relieving pain and discomfort while fostering feelings of pleasure and comfort.
Maintain a positive outlook towards life. Laughter is the best medicine as it decreases the stress hormone cortisol while distracting you from negative emotions like guilt, anger, and shame. A shared laugh can go a long way in improving your mood and strengthening your relationships with those around you.
Lastly, do not forget to unplug and take some time out for yourself. Turn off the news and social media and refresh your mind and body by listening to some calming music, connecting with nature, or perhaps reading a book. Incorporating these activities into your daily routine will make your everyday life more engaging and less stressful.
Life can often get overwhelming, putting our mental and physical health in jeopardy. With that said, maintaining good health is central to enjoying a happy and meaningful life, as every aspect of life relies on it.
The aforementioned tips can have a lasting and positive impact on your long-term physical and mental health and improve your quality of life without making any sweeping lifestyle changes.