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If there is one universal thing we all care about or at least should care about, it’s most probably our health. Mental health, physical health, the two are pretty closely connected, probably a lot more so than most people give it credit for. Despite people knowing that taking care of your health after all these years is important, not everybody does. Why is that? Why do we know such a basic and obvious thing, and everybody knows it as common knowledge, and yet, a lot of us often overlook our health in order to go and try to carry on with our lives? Well, other than the complete disregard which most young people can allow themselves to have for their body, the trend is becoming alarmingly prevalent amongst adults, and unlike among teens and young people, the effects become much more apparent, much quicker.
Building up the strength to start
If you feel like you have been slowly but surely disregarding your health and leading a self-destructive lifestyle, then it might be about time you did something about it. It’s very easy to keep putting something off, it would be safe to say that we can all agree to that. Eventually, we have to come to the conclusion that if we don’t take action and actually start doing something with ourselves, it is not going to happen on its own. If you actually feel like you genuinely want to make a change and not just say that you will “start living healthier eventually”, then now is a better time than ever. More and more solutions to healthy living are starting to pop up in the mainstream with vegetarianism and veganism becoming more accepted all over the UK and some restaurants even having fully vegetarian menus. More and more stores dedicated to healthy living, organic foods, healthier dieting, high-quality medicine and dietary supplements are popping up all over the place, and fortunately for all of us they are doing pretty well for the most part. Now, while you can stand back and just assume that this is all a phase that has no value to it and will pass over eventually, then you are not completely wrong. This is very much a phase, a positive drawn-out one, but a phase nonetheless. Will things continue developing in this direction permanently? Nobody can say for sure, but we are definitely in a health-awareness boom right now, and results are starting to show.
Why should I try to live healthily?
“Why should I suddenly try to hop on this ‘healthy lifestyle’ fad? People lived before Holland & Barrett existed did they not?”. This is the kind of reasoning that a lot of sceptics use nowadays to just completely dismiss any sort of advice regarding their lifestyle which involves something more than just taking pills from the doctors by the dozen. People want gold pills which taste like ice cream to be the panacea to everyday problems, without having to put in any effort to actually make a change. The truth is, that while some things do seem like magical medicine that just fixes things like painkillers, the average health problem for the average person is a drawn out condition that has probably lasted much longer than you give it credit for. It has been sitting there and slowly getting worse while you were managing to ignore it during your daily life because “It’s not so bad”, then continued on with your day. Overworking yourself, going for a pint after work on a daily basis, and continuing to ignore the problem is not doing you any favours. Of course, nobody is saying that you should give up all the fun things in your life and exclusively eat raw kale and do yoga at 5 am in the morning, but the whole stereotype came from somewhere, and whether you like it or not, there are quite a few grains of truth in there.
Stress is often described as a “silent killer”, proving itself both deadly, possible to drive people to the brink of insanity and beyond, but often also having a rather impactful effect on our physical state. People’s minds often try to cope with the stress they are put under, by taking some of the stress off our mind and manifesting itself physically. No matter the cause, stress has a plethora of symptoms which are not afraid to rear their ugly heads into your everyday life. Low energy, insomnia, chest pains and rapid heartbeat, tense muscles, stomach pains, headaches, clenched jaw, teeth grinding, weak immune system, loss of sex drive. These are all symptoms which can come from stress alone, so if you thought that stress is something harmless which just comes and goes, think again. If insecurity is getting to you and leaving you stressed out on a daily basis, deal with it. Go and look into getting an Invisalign treatment and feel better about your smile if it’s something which keeps getting you down. Get some new clothes so you don’t have to be ashamed of that hole on the side of your trouser leg. Start sleeping more to get rid of those bags under your eyes. There are more than enough things which you can get started on with relative ease, and now is a better time than ever.
Now, while the two are very closely linked, some ways which directly address your physical health obviously vary from the way you would look after your psyche. There are many ways in which you can go about this, but let’s just go over the 3 main ones for now so you have a place where you can get started.
A healthy sleep schedule
One might ask, what defines a healthy sleep schedule? Well, sleep is a rather personal thing and the optimal amount and time of sleep varies per-person. If you feel sluggish after you wake up and have a distinct lack of energy, then you might be sleeping too long. If you feel groggy and the thing at the forefront of your mind for the first half of the day happens to be going back to bed, then you’re probably not getting enough sleep.
A better diet
The chances are that your diet is probably sub-optimal nowadays, to say the least. With the amount of work people have piled on top of them on a daily basis, it’s easy to get lazy and just eat some fast food without having to cook anything at home, and we understand that, we’ve all been there. Despite that, something has to get done, and it might be easier than you think to get started.
Another thing which a large portion of the society no longer indulges in. We’ve gotten too comfortable, and without having to hunt for our food or go out of our way to pick berries off some dangerous cliff faces, we’ve gotten rather complacent about our amount of movement. From the office wheelchair to sitting on the tube, to sitting in front of the TV at home, we don’t do anything too physically intensive, unless you happen to work in a field which requires you to. Make it a personal goal to finally start using that long-wasted gym membership this year, and get back in shape. It will fix you and your state of mind right up.