5 Ways to Increase Your Overall Health

As the old saying goes “When you have your health, you have everything” and it is so true. And improving your overall health is not that hard. Here are five easy-to-implement ways to better health:

Laugh More, Stress Less
Do Yoga
Work Up a Sweat
Know Your Healthy Numbers
Avoid Fad Diets

Laugh More, Stress Less

Laughing not only eases stress and lowers blood pressure, but it may also boost your immune system. So regardless of how you do it, bring more laughter into your life whether that is communing with friends or watching a comedy on TV. Giving into stress can be detrimental to your good health because it drives people to give into cravings like, smoking, drinking, or bingeing on unhealthy food.

Do Yoga

Many people overlook yoga and that is a big mistake. Yoga not only relieves stress, lowers blood pressure, slows heart rates, but it also increases flexibility. By working through a series of exercises called poses, you loosen up your muscles and make them more adaptable, lessening your risk of a sport injury. Yoga works muscles in ways no other exercise routines can. One yoga routine favored by many yoga followers is the sun salutation.5 Ways to Increase Your Overall Health

Work Up a Sweat

Working up a sweat just one hour per week will reduce your risk of heart attack, improve your mood and lower your blood pressure. Two to three times per week will reap even more benefits. Try interval training like walking on an elliptical trainer or treadmill for 10 minutes, then doing 15 pull-ups and 15 crunches. Repeat this cycle three times for a great half-hour workout. If you start getting bored with the pull-ups and crunches, swap them out for other exercises like dips, and push-ups. In no time, your muscles will start to become more efficient, you’ll start to lose weight, have more energy and enjoy other physical activities more.

Know Your Healthy Numbers

As part of your annual physical check-up (you are getting an annual check-up right?), your doctor will check certain readings like blood pressure, resting heart rate, cholesterol and blood sugar. Ideally, your readings should be around 115 over 75 for blood pressure, under 100 for LDL cholesterol, under 70 for resting heart rate, as well as a fasting blood sugar level of under 100. If your numbers aren’t close to these numbers, ask your doctor what you can do to change them for the better. Most likely s/he will recommend getting more exercise and eating healthier – something you should have been doing all along.

Avoid Fad Diets

Fad diets don’t work … period, so don’t put yourself through that torture, just to have the weight come back once you go off of the diet. Most of these diets are so extreme that you can’t stay on them for very long. Instead, learn to eat healthy, something you can live with for life. Start by eating fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean meats and good fats (olive oil, canola oil, and the poly and mono-unsaturated fats).

Improving your health doesn’t have to involve spending hours in a gym or eating like a bird. Use these five ways to start improving your overall health today.

A complete and balanced diet is probably the most sound advice, but some specific types of food are especially good for brain health. Here are a few of the best:

Fish:

The original brain food contains

lots of omega-3 fatty acids and fish oils, especially cold water fish like salmon and cod.

Omega-3s are beneficial in a number of ways, including promoting neuronal growth, improved cholesterol, and fortification of myelin sheaths which facilitate communication between neurons.

Vegetables:

This is a great source of antioxidants, which may reduce the risk of developing cognitive impairment by diminishing oxidative stress.

Spinach, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and cauliflower are among the top candidates.

Fruits:

Like vegetables, fruits are rich in antioxidants. However, fruit tastes better. Some of your healthiest options are blueberries, blackberries, cranberries, strawberries, raspberries, plums, avocados, oranges, red grapes, red bell peppers, cherries and kiwis.

Water:

Be sure to get enough to keep your body and brain hydrated. Dehydration can cause a headache now, and can lead to long-term neuronal damage sustained from elevated stress hormones.

Chocolate:

Last (and arguably least beneficial) is cocoa beans, which contain the flavanol epicatechin and antioxidants. Dark chocolate is best, and avoid candy bars with lots of added sugars. Also, recent research suggests that chocolate can improve memory.

Just like you exercise your body, your brain also needs a workout to stay healthy and maintain peak performance.

Scientifically designed brain games are a great option because you can have fun and improve the health of your brain at the same time.

Thousands of people have started playing such scientific brain games and have reported increased memory, concentration and attention.