Being healthy doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive. The little things you do over a lifetime add up, and they have a huge impact on your health. Much of your health depends on consistency and common sense. Here are some small and simple investments that produce large returns when it comes to your health and well being.
-Wash Your Hands before eating and after being in public places or around sickness. Your hands are a primary route by which bacteria enters your body. The CDC recommends using soap and water for 20 seconds (about the time it takes to sing “Happy Birthday”). And remember, anti-bacterial soap is not required.
-Floss Daily. Research continues to show a strong link between gum disease and heart disease. Some studies suggest problems with your mouth and gums are as predictive of heart diseases as is high cholesterol. Your teeth have 5 surfaces – brushing only cleans 2 of them. Flossing is the best way to clean the other 3 surfaces.
-Consume Less Sugar. Numerous studies associate sugar intake with obesity, heart disease, diabetes and even dementia. As sugar consumption continues to increase, it’s important for you to resist that trend. Read the labels and cut back on foods (especially fast foods) which contain large amounts of sugar and salt. When baking, reduce the sugar by 1/4 or 1/3. You probably won’t notice the difference.
-Open Your Windows. Studies by the EPA indicate that indoor pollution is often 2 to 5 times higher than outdoor pollution. Always take advantage of days when the outside temperature is pleasant by opening the windows in your home or vehicle. It will improve your health and save you money.
-Chew Your Food More Thoroughly. Not only will this significantly increase the amount of nutrition your body absorbs from the food you eat, it can also help you lose weight. How many times should you chew? Depending on the food, 20-30 chews is ideal – the more the better. Consider laying your fork down between each bite.
-Leave Your Shoes at the Door. Imagine all the places you walk everyday and how much bacteria is on the bottom of your shoes. Why would you want to spread those germs throughout your home? This is one cause of the high level of indoor pollution discussed above. In many cultures around the world, not removing your shoes before entering a home is unthinkable.
-Stop and Breathe Deeply. I say it often, but taking time out several times each day to take a few slow, deep breaths will lower your stress and improve your overall health. Unmanaged stress is linked to numerous chronic diseases. Becoming quiet, breathing deeply and listening to God is a good way to be healthier and happier.
-Be Honest. Studies show people who constantly lie and exaggerate experience more stress and more physical ailments than those who tend to tell the truth. Lie detectors work because people who lie experience stress. The stress causes immediate physical symptoms picked up by the lie detector. No wonder the Bible says so much about truth.