You’ve heard it before: eating better and losing weight will help you achieve optimal health. You’ve tried the latest diets and all the best exercises that are supposed to get you to this magical goal. However, health is about more than just losing weight. If you want to commit to being truly healthy, you have to make real changes in every aspect of your life. When you’re focused on total wellness, your outlook improves, your mood increases and you’ll find yourself losing unwanted weight without feeling like you’re sacrificing anything in the process.
So here we will share, 7 ways to look better, feel better and main optimal health:
1) Create and Maintain Focus
When making any big life change, it helps to visualize your goals. Write down the improvements you want to see, whether it’s losing weight, having a better mood or maintaining health as you age. Make short- and long-term goals so you can track your progress over time and see how far you’ve come.
2) Ditch the Sugar
While sugar may not be the evil that many people tout it as, it still has major negative effects on health. Too many sweet foods or even sweet flavors induce your body to release insulin. Over time, high levels of insulin cause cells to become desensitized, leading to a condition known as insulin resistance. One side effect of this condition is increased storage of sugar as fat. However, sugar from foods such as fruit doesn’t have the same effect as it comes packaged with nutrients and fiber that help slow its release and maintain a moderate insulin response.
3) Skip the Starbucks
It’s not just those high-calorie lattes that can sabotage your health. Plain old coffee can have detrimental effects as well. Excessive intake of stimulants such as caffeine signals insulin release just like sugar does, leading to the same kinds of consequences. Plus, when you pop into your favorite java joint, you’re putting yourself in front of a case full of high-calorie, low-nutrient treats that make for unnecessary temptation.
If you absolutely can’t make it through the morning without a jolt, try switching to green tea. It has enough caffeine to give you a boost without overdoing it and it contains compounds that support weight loss through increased body heat production.
4) Eat Whole and Unprocessed
Real health changes don’t happen without real dietary changes. While the media tends to latch on to every fad that comes along, there are tried and true ways to boost your health through the food you eat.
Start by eliminating all highly processed and packaged foods from your diet. Clean out the fridge and the pantry and fill the resulting empty spaces with whole, unprocessed foods such as leafy and crunchy vegetables, fruits, whole grains, beans and raw nuts and seeds. Building each meal and snack around these foods instead of popular refined fare delivers a healthy balance of carbohydrates, proteins and fats in forms that nourish your body. Eating whole, real foods also boosts health by giving you a wide variety of vitamins and minerals along with fiber that isn’t found in processed foods.
When you do buy something in a package, read the label carefully. If you see a long ingredients list that includes items such as partially hydrogenated oils, artificial colors or artificial sweeteners, put it back on the shelf and head to the produce section.
While this might seem like a no-brainer, exercise does more than just help you lose weight and get in shape. Regular moderate exercise has been shown to boost mood and can even help you form new pathways in your brain that make it easier to stick with healthy habits.
Different types of exercise offer different benefits. Strength training signals your body to mobilize and burn fat while building lean muscle mass. Having lean muscle can actually increase your testosterone levels by lowering amounts of a substance called sex hormone binding globulin. Combine this with cardio to combat brain aging and high intensity interval training to boost endorphins and you’ll find your mood improving in no time. High intensity intervals also encourage your body to burn fat after your workout is over, making them the most efficient choice when you don’t have a lot of time for intense exercise.
6) Be Accountable to Someone
As you’re making changes in your diet and fitness routines, make sure that you have someone to “report” to about your progress. Recruit a friend to exercise with you, get support from your spouse or post your goals to social media, whatever you know will help you to stay motivated. That way, you’ll not only have people to get you back on track when you feel like quitting but also to encourage you as you hit new milestones on your journey to health.
7) Be Reasonable
It’s a common mistake to try to do too much, too soon when aiming for improved health. To be successful in the long term, avoid the temptation to crash diet and exercise until your muscles feel like they’re burning up. Going to extremes sets you back physically and mentally. Instead, focus on taking things one step at a time. Go back to the list of health goals you made at the beginning and reward yourself with a favorite activity every time you reach one. Approaching health as an ongoing lifestyle puts your choices into perspective and allows you to make gains over time that not only help your body but also improve your overall outlook on life.
Hope you put into practice these 7 ways to look better, keep your health as a priority and you will without a doubt start to feel better from the beginning. Also a great tip for this would be to stay around people who are looking for the same goals as you and find ways to always bring happiness into your life. Check this post out