What Are Healthy Habits?
Healthy habits are routines that include time and commitment to a health-enhancing task or lifestyle .
The definition seems simple, but it involves two important concepts: habits and health.
Starting with the habit, it is worth saying that it is a behavior repeated on a regular basis that, little by little, becomes part of the daily routine.
An example is the time we wake up most days.
If, during the week, we have a schedule with a fixed time to get to work , it is likely that this action will become a habit .
That’s why, even on weekends, when we can sleep late, we tend to wake up at the usual time.
After all, this activity is consolidated in the brain , kept by the subconscious. So much so that we don’t even need to think too much to follow the script, do we?
Now that we’ve covered the concept of habit, let’s move on to health.
For this, it is worth mentioning the concept constructed by the World Health Organization (WHO), which defines health as:
“A state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease.”
It means that, to be healthy, it is necessary to feel good in relation to the body, mind (including emotions ), interactions and social bonds.
Of course, it is not possible to feel happy or excited all the time, however, it is necessary to maintain balance , maintaining positive emotional states for most of the day.
In addition to taking care of the body, building and maintaining relationships that have beneficial effects on routine.
It may seem like work, but valuing these aspects helps to achieve more quality of life , motivation and energy to achieve goals.
How Can Having Healthy Habits Impact On Quality Of Life?
Both food and physical exercise, moments of relaxation and leisure have the ability to add quality of life, even among individuals who work many hours a week or have a hectic routine .
Swapping the car for the bike or for a walk, the sweet after lunch for a fruit or having a good night’s sleep make all the difference in everyday life, with effects on mood, mood and well-being .
Below, we detail 5 impacts resulting from behaviors that are good for health.
Stimulates The Brain
Several factors interfere with brain health , and food is one of the most evident.
Moderating your sugar intake is important, as is eating healthy fats — fish, seeds, nuts — for brain cell maintenance.
By adhering to a balanced diet, you help regulate the gut , which has bacteria linked to the brain, which impacts the feeling of well-being.
The practice of physical activity is also essential to stimulate the brain and have a good memory .
As this BBC report cites , exercises increase synapses , favoring the transmission of nerve impulses and the creation of neurons.
Another good option is to rest your mind, reducing the time of stress by disconnecting for a few moments.
Contrary to what it may seem, periods of relaxation are not wasteful . They allow us to activate an area of the brain called the neural network by default.
This part helps with memory consolidation.
Increases The Mood
As the professor of the Postgraduate Program in Physical Education Amilton Vieira comments :
“From an emotional point of view, those who are active reduce anxiety and stress and increase self-esteem and willingness to do everything on a daily basis.”
That’s because the body releases hormones such as endorphins during physical activity, causing satisfaction and well-being .
In the field of food, natural sources of carbohydrates such as bananas and oats, collaborate to increase the mood, as well as the egg, whose B vitamins support the body to transform nutrients into energy.
The combination of a balanced diet, physical exercise and a healthy mind is essential to avoid sudden weight gain or loss.
Keeping your weight under control is more than just an aesthetic preference , as obesity is a risk factor for a range of ailments – from type 2 diabetes and hypertension to cancer.
Excess saturated fat leads to inflammation in the organs and can obstruct blood circulation, causing problems such as heart attack.
In addition to the more serious complications, overweight tends to decrease mood, overload bones and joints, affect sleep quality and impair self-esteem.
It is a consensus that a healthy person does not have diseases, therefore, behaviors towards health are capable of preventing or minimizing various diseases .
Lower salt consumption, for example, decreases the chances of developing high blood pressure, while sugar control tends to prevent the onset of type 2 diabetes.
Not smoking also has a considerable effect on quality of life and prevention of diseases such as chronic bronchitis, heart attack and cancer.
Good habits also reduce the chances of suffering from psychic disorders such as burnout syndrome , anxiety and depression.
Regular intake of anti-inflammatory foods , such as fiber and vegetables, boosts the immune system and reduces the risk of depression by 33%, according to a study conducted by epidemiologist Camille Lassale, from University College, UK.
When we are sad or discouraged , it is natural for the body to ask for energy sources found in fats and sugars.
After all, devouring a bar of chocolate causes an almost instantaneous reaction of joy and excitement, thanks to the rapid discharge of the hormone serotonin .
The effect happens quickly because chocolate has chemically simple nutrients, which are soon synthesized by the body.
However, the effect is short-lived and, if repeated often, damages the immune system, brain, and blood flow.
If the goal is to improve mood in the long term , it is worth investing in complex carbohydrates present in beans, brown rice and corn.
What Are The Main Healthy Habits?
Now that you know the benefits of adopting a healthy habits, check out 4 behaviors that have the power to transform your daily life :
- proper food
- Practice of physical exercises
- Avoid drinking alcohol and drugs
- Make regular medical appointments.
The more colorful your plate, the more balanced the meal .
You may have heard this maxim, which is valid for most people, as different colors often represent different nutrients.
To compose a healthy diet, it is worth observing reference materials such as this scheme , based on the concept of the food pyramid and its 8 food groups.
Complete meals have at least one representative from each floor of the pyramid, as they all contribute to the maintenance of the organism .
What changes is the recommended amount for each group.
Cereals, breads, roots and tubers, which form the first floor of the pyramid, have the essential carbohydrates that must be consumed daily and in a greater proportion than the other items.
On the second floor are vegetables, fruits and fruit juices, rich in fiber and vitamins.
Just above, there are sources of protein such as legumes, meat, milk and dairy products or food supplements such as whey protein .
On the fourth floor, we find foods that have lipids (fats and sugars) in abundance and, therefore, should be consumed in small amounts.
Practice Of Physical Exercises
Fighting a sedentary lifestyle prevents diseases such as obesity, high LDL cholesterol, constant fatigue, bone and muscle problems.
Therefore, physical exercise is a priority health issue for individuals of all ages.
As we mentioned above, small habits count towards improving fitness, however, it takes dedication to overcome the sedentary lifestyle.
According to the WHO , to be considered active, adults must engage in 150 to 300 minutes of moderate to vigorous aerobic activity every week, while children and adolescents need to exercise at least 60 minutes daily.
Avoid Drinking Alcohol And Drugs
Mental disorders, cardiovascular and liver diseases are just a few examples of the evils triggered by the consumption of legal drugs, such as alcohol and also illegal.
These substances have a toxic effect on the body, in addition to presenting a risk of dependence because they cause a brief sensation of pleasure.
A healthy life calls for them to be eliminated or avoided as much as possible.
Make Regular Medical Appointments
Currently, Western medicine has incorporated a preventive approach , focusing on the maintenance of the body and mind to avoid illness and provide a more peaceful existence for patients.
This approach implies the empowerment of the patient who, instead of waiting to see a doctor only when there is a symptom, should schedule periodic visits to ensure prolonged well-being.
Even if this follow-up identifies a disease, its diagnosis will be early, increasing the chances of cure.
9 Healthy Habits To Cultivate In Your Routine
In the next few lines, we bring you 9 ideas for you to start cultivating healthy habits – or add some to your everyday life.
1. Plan Your Routine
Uncertainties about what should be done and the importance of these tasks cause anxiety and hinder the achievement of goals .
The good news is that this clutter can be replaced by planning , simply and concisely.
Start by dedicating a few minutes of your night to writing down the activities you need to do the next day, and then assigning their degree of relevance to define which ones should be done first.
2. Drink Water
Consuming enough water is still a challenge for many people, but it is necessary to overcome this difficulty to keep the body hydrated , facilitate digestion and control blood pressure.
A simple tip to get in the habit of drinking water is to keep a portion of the liquid always close by , in a glass or bottle.
3. Cultivate Affective Bonds
Human beings are social beings, so creating and maintaining healthy relationships is good for the body, mind, and especially for emotions .
Try to cultivate quality bonds, keeping people around who make you feel satisfied, fulfilled and happy.
If possible, increase time with family and friends.
4. Create Hobbies
It may seem superfluous, but discovering and investing in your favorite hobbies has positive effects on your emotional state, and can even improve your mood.
Depending on the hobby, there is stimulation of memory, motor functions, oratory and reasoning, in addition to learning and reinforcing creativity .
After all, hobbies add new situations and information, expanding the repertoire – which serves as material to create.
5. Do Physical Exercises
Having the habit of moving regularly improves physical conditioning , helps in maintaining weight, fat level and causes pleasant sensations.
However, it’s not always easy to establish an exercise routine, especially if you don’t like sports or the gym.
Then look for activities that interest you , such as walking, dancing or martial arts to encourage you to stick to your schedule.
If you can, add more pleasurable elements such as contact with nature and friends during training.
6. Eat Healthy Foods
Throughout this article, we present several reasons to adopt a healthy diet, as food nourishes the body .
Not that you need to deprive yourself of a tasty dessert every day, but stick to healthy ingredients and, in general, eat balanced meals.
7. Control Stress
A little stress is natural and drives us to complete everyday tasks.
But too much stress harms well-being , causing anxiety, insomnia and other problems.
If you’re under a lot of pressure , try to stop and take a deep breath, take a few minutes to meditate daily, or use mindfulness techniques .
8. Take Breaks From Work
Sitting or in the same position for long hours can impair blood circulation, spine, bones and muscles, in addition to increasing pressure at work.
Try to take scheduled breaks every 30 minutes , for example.
Take a few moments to stretch, have a coffee and relax.
9. Know Your Limits
Environments such as work and social groups can expose us to people with whom we do not have an affinity or get along.
In these situations, it is important to maintain clear and polite communication .
But, if this is not possible, the best thing to do is walk away to avoid unproductive and unnecessary conflicts.
Pay attention, too, to the signals that your body and mind emit, respecting the limits regarding the volume of work , studies and interpersonal relationships.
We hope that you have understood the concept of healthy habits.