Making healthy changes can be quite burdensome, especially if you have to put in a lot of effort. But there is no reason to wait for the new year’s eve to make resolutions to bring these lifestyle changes. Instead, prefer changes that require minimal efforts. So, read give our list of 5 minimal lifestyle changes that ensures huge health rewards a whirl. These healthy changes are so insignificant that even calling them a “change” would be an overstatement.
Healthy Changes Towards a Better Life
Let’s take a look at the 5 positive changes we can bring about in our daily routine.
Meditate everyday for over 5 minutes
Most of the research on meditation emphasizes the benefits of 20-minute or longer sessions, but experts believe that even a minute is better than none. Meditation will help you reap benefits like reduced anxiety, improved cognition, a more robust immune system if practiced consistently. A mere 5-minute session in the morning will not only set a healthy tone for the day but also elevate your mood. “Things such as positive affirmations, morning prayer and mindfulness techniques such as mindful breathing and awareness have all been shown to retrain our brains. They also lower our stress levels and help get us mentally ready for the day,” says Dr Tiffany Lowe-Payne. She is an osteopathic doctor in Raleigh, North Carolina.
Take sips of Sparkling Water:
Sparkling water will satiate your desire for the sweetness of your afternoon soda—that too, with empty calories. “Changing your drink to water will quickly reduce your unhealthy calorie intake,” says Dr Nicholas Pennings, chair of family medicine at Campbell University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Lillington, North Carolina. He further recommends adding fresh fruit, mint or cucumber to your glass if water alone is too dull. Two years ago, one of Pennings’ patients followed this advice and changed nothing else – and lost 19 pounds in 6 months. He’s kept it off since.
Go meatless once a week:
Chowing down on healthy, leafy salads instead of beef burger once a week is hardly a sacrifice. Especially when you know of the health benefits, it rewards, like reduced risks of cancer, heart disease, obesity and diabetes. A plate loaded with vegetables, healthy whole grains and beans, lentils or tofu will reduce your red and processed meat intake, as suggested by Dr Sean Hashmi. Dr Hashmi is the regional lead of adult weight management at Kaiser Permanente Southern California.
Downsize your Plates:
Eating less is quite challenging, instead focus on dining on smaller plates. Downsizing your plate will help you reduce your portions by 30 per cent. As found in research, reducing the size of your plate with a diameter that’s just 30 per cent smaller cuts the area of the plate by half. “Calories add up quickly – especially with things you do consistently – so cutting back on portions can be helpful to prevent disease and stay healthy,” says Jessica Crandall. Crandall is a registered dietitian in Denver and spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Just don’t cut down on your vegetable portions, she adds.
Shut down 15 minutes earlier:
Switch off your cell phones and other gadgets 15 minutes before you usually go to bed. Fill the gap with meaningful, healthy activities like reading a book or writing a thank you note. “If you shut down your auto-pilot technology surfing, you open the possibility to induce positive emotions in other potentially rich and varied ways,” says Rachel Hershenberg. He is an assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Emory University. Moreover, Hershenberg is the author of “Activating Happiness: A Jump-Start Guide to Overcoming Low Motivation, Depression, or Just Feeling Stuck.”