Most of us would have heard this quote and this is applicable to our health as well. We first make our lifestyle habits and our lifestyle habits make our health.
What are the lifestyle habits?
Our lifestyle habits comprise of numerous things, such as
- The food we eat
- Our sleep duration and quality
- Our temptation or even addiction to caffeine, sweets, smoking and alcohol
- How often we laugh
- How often we exercise
- Our vacation time
- Our working routines and workplace relationships
- Our family relationships
Broadly, we can classify them into four categories
- Diet & Nutrition
- Sleep/Rest and
- Positive Mental Health.
Most of the time, these 4 are interrelated. One affects the other. Say if one does not have a proper sleep, it is unlikely that he/she will do exercise or take the right nutrition or be with a positive attitude the next day. Similarly, when one has a stressful time at office, it is unlikely that he/she will be able to sleep well or focus on a nutritious diet or exercise. Similarly, if we fix one in a positive way, it will also impact the other areas in a positive way. Say if one had a stressful day at office, but still he/she went for a quick jog for 30 minutes, the body automatically releases endorphins that interact with the receptors in brain and reduce your perception of stress. So, the good news is that, just by fixing one of these 4 areas, it is easy to fix all the 4 areas of healthy lifestyle habits.
Let’s look at these 4 pillars of health in a bit more detail.
Sleep / Rest
Sleep is very important as your body repairs itself during sleep. A good quality sleep strengthens the immune system, reduces the risk of diseases, lowers blood pressure, keeps heart healthy, improves memory, controls weight, curbs inflammation, spurs creativity, sharpens attention, makes you more energetic and happier, reduces anxiety and depression, keeps the skin healthier and attractive. The amount of sleep required may vary from person to person according to their lifestyle. In general, sleeping early and maintaining a good 6 to 8 of sleep hours is recommended.
Positive Mental Attitude
Having a positive mental attitude is very important to our overall well-being. When our attitude is not positive, our body undergoes a stressful situation. A well-balanced diet, exercise and good sleep are important to gain a positive mental attitude. You can also learn to handle stress by planning and organizing activities well in advance, learning to let go of things that cause unhappiness and cannot be changed, meditating for a few minutes, focusing on the future instead of the past, deferring your response to complex situation by a few seconds or a few minutes and so on.
Diet and Nutrition
Diet and nutrition are two factors that we need to know about, and it is important to recognize the difference between the two. The best way to define diet is the food that a person habitually eats, and nutrition is food that our bodies need to consume daily to function optimally. Food sustains life and living beings. Complexion, clarity, good voice, longevity, genius, happiness, satisfaction, nutrition, strength and intellect are all conditioned by food. A few things that we need to take care in our diet are eating fresh food, eating a balanced diet, eating at the right time, supplementing our diet and the way we eat.
The benefits of a modest exercise program include:
- Weight Loss
- Lower blood pressure
- Stronger bones and decreased risk of osteoporosis
- Lower cholesterol levels
- Elevated levels of HDL
- Decreased levels of LDL
- Decreased levels of Triglycerides
- Increased strength and co-ordination, which leads to decreased risk of falls
- Improved sensitivity to Insulin
- Enhanced immune system
- Overall increased sense of well-being