Things you need to do in 2018 to be healthier
1) Develop a morning routine
There are several reasons but the simple answer is because a lot of successful people directly attribute their success to great morning routines.
Top CEO’s attribute it to their success
Steve Jobs, Kevin O’Leary (Dragons Den), Barack Obama, Tony Robbins… Do you see where I’m going with this? Even if you’re not looking to run a fortune 500 company, you’ll want to make your life easier and more successful.
Willpower is strongest in the morning
Take advantage of the high willpower you have in the morning. Think of willpower as a muscle, the more you have to use, the more fatigue sets in. Get the big things done that need to be accomplished.
Increase productivity and efficiency
Since you have all this energy (hopefully), use it for good. There is nothing more satisfying than crossing something off your list. Make a list and put the top 3 things that need to be done for that day, then cross them off. It makes it quite a bit easier to accomplish anything and keep moving forward where you can physically see something checked off.
Self-Confidence and Momentum Builder
Routinely doing something every day, even just a little bit, keeps that snowball turning. When we adhere to a routine and stick with it, it helps build self-confidence and gives us a sense of tremendous satisfaction. That provides us with the ‘fuel’ to continue our routine and reap the benefits associated with it.
Stress and Anxiety Release
A daily routine takes this type of stress away by eliminating the guesswork, and therefore all the stress, from even the busiest of days. You’ll feel much more at peace knowing where you need to be, and when.
Morning routines can range from 5-10 minutes all the way to 3 hours. Great things start small; you don’t need to have 5 things you have to do every morning. Start off with one- Make a green smoothie, make a to-do list for the day, meditate, think of who you’re grateful for.
Don’t over complicate things here.
Remember to KISS yourself every day – Keep it Simple Stupid
Not getting at least 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep per night (at night) can be just as bad as eating poorly and not exercising
Chronic diseases | Increased risk
Increased Inflammation | Cancer | Diabetes | Decreased Immune function | Alzheimer’s
Environmental Medicine recently found that women working the night shift had 400% higher risk of cancer. Poor sleep has been strongly linked to long-term inflammation of the digestive tract, in disorders known as inflammatory bowel diseases
Accidents and Depression
Less than 6 hours sleep can leave your ability to think impaired, which can cause problems at home, work, and even on the road. 18 MILLION Americans have depression, more than ½ of them have insomnia as well.
Those getting less than 7 hours of sleep per night has been shown to raise your risk of weight gain by increasing your “Hungry Hormones”
Improve Concentration and Productivity
Great sleep can maximize problem-solving skills and enhance memory. Shitty sleep has been shown to impair brain function and can negatively impact some aspects of brain function to a similar degree as alcohol intoxication
Maximize Athletic Performance
In a study on basketball players, longer sleep was shown to significantly improve speed, accuracy, reaction times, and mental wellbeing
– Sleep in a Cold, Darkroom: It decreases core your body temp and initiates sleep
– Go to bed and wake up at the same time – Try for 8 Hours
– Exercise in the morning
– Foods that aid in better sleep – Grass-fed beef, Flaxseeds, Chia Seeds, Wild Caught Salmon
– Sleep NAKED – Boosts hormones to make you look younger, skin to skin contact is great, you feel free!
3) Be Grateful
Being grateful uses the calming part of the nervous system that seems to have a protective benefit on our bodies. These include decreasing the stress hormone (cortisol) and possibly increasing the feel-good hormones (oxytocin)
Improve Sleep Quality
Researchers found that when people spent 15 minutes jotting down what they’re grateful before bed, they fell asleep faster and stayed asleep longer – Couple this with a few minutes of deep breathing exercises and you’ll be sleeping like a baby
Grateful people experience fewer aches and pains and report feeling healthier than other people. Not surprisingly, grateful people are also more likely to take care of their health. They exercise more often and are more likely to attend regular check-ups, which is likely to contribute to further longevity.
Being thankful for the little things that your partner does can make your relationship strong – kiss on the forehead after they make you dinner or hug around the waist while they do the laundry
Improved Immune system
Another study found that gratitude can boost your immune system. Researchers at the universities of Utah and Kentucky observed that stressed-out law students who characterized themselves as optimistic actually had more disease-fighting cells in their bodies.
Healthier and happy
A 2015 paper found people who were more grateful for who they are and what they have were more hopeful and also more physically healthier. Being grateful can act as a buffer against negative emotions or states.
4) Deep breathing
Think how your body feels when you are tense, angry, scared or stressed. It constricts. Your muscles get tight and your breathing becomes shallow. When your breathing is shallow you are not getting the amount of oxygen that your body needs.
It turns on your off switch
When you are in a stressed out, you’ll be in a “ Fight or slight” mode, which is good if you have a bear chasing you. Many diseases and illness stem from chronic stress ( Fight or flight mode) – High blood pressure, cardiovascular ( heart) issues, immune disease constipation. Deep relaxed breathing allows you to turn on your “ Rest and Digest”, this will help turn down anxiety, stress and allow more blood flow to your organs and calming nerves.
Decrease Pain, anxiety, depression
Did you know that your Neck, shoulder, rib, and back pain can be caused by inappropriate breathing? No wonder they become chronic injuries and negatively affect your life.
Improve Sleep, Happiness, Optimism
Do you have trouble falling asleep at night? Do you wake up in the middle of the night and can’t get back to sleep? Deep breathing can lower Heart rate and increase blood flow to organs which is all beneficial to start sleeping better.
Stimulate Brain growth
According to a study by Harvard in 2005, when controlled breathing is used during meditation, it can increase the size of the brain! Meditation that involves focused breathing has the capacity to increase the cortical thickness
Tips for better breathing:
– Find a quiet place or put earplugs or headphones on Have classical or “Alpha/beta music”
– Breathe more slowly
– Breathe more deeply, from the belly
– Exhale longer than you inhale
– Do this Daily/ In the morning/ right before bed/ at a stressed point
Although breathing may seem like an unconscious mechanism, it is entirely controllable and, once tamed, can influence heart rate, blood pressure, circulation, hormone production, stress levels and many other bodily functions.
5) Walk in Nature
“Walking is an inexpensive, low risk and accessible form of exercise and it turns out that combined with nature and group settings, it may be a very powerful, under-utilized stress buster,”
Here are 5 quick reasons why nature’s the best…
Immune boosting power
When we breathe in the fresh air while deep in nature, we take in the “Phytoncides”
This is what plants give off to protect themselves from insects. When we breathe these in, we use the antibacterial and antifungal properties, to increase our white blood cells (cells for our immune system) – Natural killer cells (NK). NK cells KILL TUMOUR and VIRUS INFECTED cells in our bodies. Walking has the potential to help fight/prevent cancer
Reduce Stress, Blood pressure, Depression
There are quite powerful scents and smells deep in the forest that effects our health and emotions. Smells are closely tied to our emotional center for our brain, that’s why certain smells bring back nostalgia and memories. Pine, fir, cedar, and cypress trees all have the “Phytoncides” which have been found to decrease the Cortisol stress hormone.
Make your brain work better and make you more creative
Walking through a forest or green areas with trees have been found to aid memory and learning. “Forest kindergartens” have become popular in Germany and slowly in the US and UK. Children who play in forest environments are better at many thinking skills, have better manual dexterity and can assess risks better than those kids who learn in an enclosed space.
Increase focus, recovery from illness or surgery
Looking trees, birds, water, plants and immersing yourself in nature gives your brain a break allowing us to focus better and allows us to recharge our “Patience” battery.
Inadequate sleep effects almost (If not) every aspect of your life. There’s strong research showing that poor sleep affects your reflexes, decreases your immune system, cardiovascular issues (heart attack, stroke), brain function is impaired. You’ll more likely to be overweight, more mood swings, depression, high blood pressure, and accidental death.
Many studies produce strong evidence that even three to five minutes of contact with nature can significantly reduce stress and have a complex impact on emotions, reducing anger and fear and increasing pleasant feelings. This effect can be achieved by providing: views to the outside, interior gardens or aquariums, or art with a nature theme.
One great thing of all of these are… THEY’RE FREE. You can see that most of them have a crossover effect on your health- Decrease stress and anxiety, Improve sleep, the immune system, and get your beneficial hormones working at a better capacity. This isn’t an exhausted list but it is a pretty strong list for being healthier and happier.
Remember to KISS yourself every day – Keep it Simple Stupid