21 Ways to Top up Your Wellbeing
Living a healthy life is a choice, and a decision you should make because you’re worth it. Healthy living is achieved by making healthy choices in many small ways, several times a day. Every small healthy choice (we’ve listed 21 tips below) adds to your storehouse of healthy choices. Good health is our most precious wealth!
1. Dress for success
How you dress can have a big impact on how you perceive yourself. When you feel confident about how you look, it changes the way you carry yourself and encourages you to interact with others confidently. This doesn’t mean that you have to spend a lot of money. Consider spending a bit more on a few quality items instead of buying a host of less quality items.
2. Walk this way
Walk with energy and purpose. Allow your body to invigorate your mind.
Action Step: Practice! Make a conscious effort to STRUT.
3. Stand tall
The way you carry yourself paints a picture of who you are. Sit up straight, stand up tall, hold your head up, and look people in the eye. Empower yourself to empower others.
4 Get moving
Exercising energizes your body and mind, improves physical appearance, and encourages positive momentum to move forward to reach your goals.
5 Speak up
Challenge yourself to speak up in every group discussion. This will help you organize your thoughts and refine your public speaking skills. It will also help others to perceive you as a leader.
6 Be thankful
Having gratitude for all of the positive components of your life will help you to focus on what you have rather than what you don’t. List everything that you are grateful for: loving relationships, personal successes, your health, your unique impact on the world. Let this list encourage you to move forward with confidence.
7. Away with white, embrace brown
Most of the starches we eat are considered ‘white’ because they are processed. Unprocessed grains are actually brown and contain many more trace minerals, vitamins and fibre than their white counterparts. Get rid of the white rice, white noodles and white bread, and try their much healthier brown counterparts. Your taste buds may be shocked at first, but with some perseverance, you will learn to love them.
8. Kick the addictions
In today’s fast-paced world, who is not addicted to refined sugar and caffeine? Challenge yourself and spend two weeks every six months without any of these two modern day demons in your diet. Your body will thank you for it. In your daily life, replace refined (white) sugar with forms of sugar that are less processed, such as honey, molasses or stevia. It takes experimenting in the kitchen, but many yummy desserts that even your kids will love can be made with them.
9. Discover natural sugars
Replace that bag of white sugar in your cupboard with either brown sugar, or even better, with other forms of less processed sugars. Honey, agave syrup and molasses are the next best choices. If you do some baking at home, why not replace some of the white sugar in your recipes with apple sauce or dried fruits? You will benefit from the fibre and multivitamins in the fruit, in addition to its sweet taste. For the very adventurous, experiment with stevia – a sweet-tasting plant extract – to satisfy your taste buds minus the calories and addictive properties of white sugar.
10. Have more healthy omegas
Fats can be healthy, but only if they come from cold-water fish, flaxseeds, chia seeds, and various types of nuts. Make salmon, mackerel, anchovies, sardines, herring and tuna your fishes of choice. In addition, replace your regular snacks with a handful of nuts or seeds, and you’ll be on your way to fantastic health.
11. Pack in those antioxidants
Antioxidants are key to good cardiovascular health, brain function and graceful aging. There is no question that antioxidant compounds are most concentrated in fruits and vegetables – so make it a point to always fill your plate with a good portion of these multi-hued nutritional powerhouses! Berry smoothies are perhaps the tastiest way of consuming fruits with highest amounts of antioxidants on a daily basis.
12. Protein up!
Our snacks usually consist of sugary or starchy foods. As a result, we experience sugar highs and sugar crashes throughout the day. This makes us feel grumpy and weak, and it causes hyperactivity in children and mood swings in adults. Add a protein to your main meals and snacks, and you will enjoy increased energy, fewer cravings and less moodiness.
13. Listen to your appetite
In our attempts to lose weight or adopt a healthier lifestyle, many of us tend to opt for a very low-calorie diet. While that little salad and pot of yoghurt for lunch feels healthy, when we are starving a few hours later, we’re most likely to reach for chips, cookies or chocolate – negating any positive effects our iron discipline at lunch might have rewarded us with. Choose the right foods to eat, but let your body decide on the quantity!
14. Read your labels
The most alarming sources of contaminants and harmful additives our families are potentially exposed to on a daily basis are actually the ones slipped—whether intentionally or unintentionally—into the food and products that we buy. So much of the food we buy is potentially covered in, blended with or somehow contaminated by pesticides, drugs and other chemicals. One of the best ways to protect our families is by making the effort to fully understand what is in the food and products we are purchasing. Make the time to learn to read food and product labels knowledgeably. Then stop to read those labels before you put food items into your shopping basket.
15. Rotate your grains!
Don’t just eat the same old wheat-based products (breads, pasta or noodles, biscuits) day in and day out. Gluten, a substance found in wheat, barley, oats and spelt, disagrees with most people without them even noticing it. Shake up your eating habits by trying new types of gluten-free grains such as quinoa, millet, brown rice or buckwheat.
16. Understand what a healthy meal looks like
We learned about this in school, but we often forget what the building blocks of a balanced diet should be when we make food choices. Foods can be grouped as carbohydrates, proteins, and fruits and vegetables. Make sure that all your main meals contain equal portions of these three groups, as well as a small quantity of healthy fat.
17. Introduce alkaline-inducing foods into your diet and reduce the acid-forming ones
Keep your blood’s pH levels at its optimum by regularly incorporating alkaline foods such as leafy greens, cruciferous vegetables, roots and lemons into your daily diet.
18. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate
Drink lots of water. It keeps your kidneys, which cleanse your body of toxins, healthy.
19. Go green
Eat lots of green coloured fruits and vegetables as they contain chlorophyll, which helps cleanse the body of environmental toxins and aids liver detoxification.
20. Garlic keeps more than just vampires at bay
Add garlic, one of the best detox foods, to your diet. It helps stimulate your liver to produce detox enzymes.
21. Work up a sweat
Sweat it out in the sauna. Your body expels waste through perspiration.
Some of these healthier lifestyle choices are big ones to make. Many are little ones that are easy and painless to introduce into your life. The important thing to remember is that every little change makes a difference to your life. It only takes a little effort to reap remarkable rewards.