When we are young, it is easier to get by with a little sleep, too much bad food and very little exercise. As we get older, it gets harder for our bodies to bounce back. Having a lifestyle that is full of activity and a healthy diet has a huge impact on our mental and physical health, so here are 10 smart reasons to invest in your health now.
1. Live longer – we expect to live forever as kids but as we get older, the impact of our chosen lifestyles can affect our longevity. Whilst we can’t turn back the clock, we can make changes now and make our health a priority – by exercising, eating well and reducing stress. In a recent evaluation of 20,000 people published in the library of Science Medicine, it was found that people who exercise regularly, drink alcohol in moderation, ate well, and avoid smoking could add an additional 14 years onto their life expectancy. Sounds good to me.
2. Function better – the human body is designed to be fit and active, and generally everything works better when you are fit and healthy. Life really does feel better when you are firing on all cylinders and nothing stops you doing the things you love. I love a good dance at parties, and who doesn’t want to blow out the candles and do a little dancing at their 90th Birthday party?
3. Run Faster – ok, not all of us are training for a race like I am, but we all want good mobility, be free of aches and pains and creaking joints. Remember the way your felt after competing that long run, or hitting your personal best in the gym? That positive vibe translates into the way you carry yourself as well as how you are perceived by others.
Don’t worry if you can’t run either, brisk walking for 30 minutes as day will provide a heap of benefits. Be proud of what you are capable of.
4. Improve sleep – a great benefit of physical exercise, even if it’s taking the stairs instead of the lift, means you’ll have more energy in the day, and be physically tired at night so you’ll drop off quicker and stay asleep longer.
Poor nutrition can alter sleep patterns too, so make sure you fuel your body with nutritious food throughout the day, and avoid caffeine close to bedtime. You will wake refreshed and full of energy and be able to go through your daily tasks with ease.
5. Look better – from our clothes fitting better, to great skin, and healthy hair and nails, that healthy glow feels so amazing, and takes less effort than trying to fake it with magic underwear and expensive make up! Healthy people just look younger, have more energy and are more successful!
6. Work smarter – With the energy boost from exercise and a better night’s sleep, physical activity can flood your brain with new ideas and innovations; your concentration levels and brain power will get a boost too. You will feel more in control and more alert, meaning you will be more efficient at work.
In theory, those who work smarter not harder, get more done in less time and can go home early. Who knew a healthy lifestyle could be so empowering?
7. Beat depression – those who exercise not only have more energy, but statistically they are less likely to suffer with depression. It may seem like an odd thing to do exercise when you feel fatigued and low, but exercise stimulates the feel-good endorphins that perk up your energy levels as well as your mood.
8. Skip the Doctor – let’s face it, visiting the Doctor and feeling ill are never fun. However, the healthier you are, the stronger your immune system becomes, and you will be less likely to visit your GP, even for the minor things. Our habits now will impact how we look and feel 20 years from now.
9. To Play with Children and Grandchildren – For those of you who are parents, we want to be there for our children, watch them grow up and enjoy their milestones – the proms, graduations, weddings and grandchildren. I love spending time with my grandson, but at 4 years old he can be very active, so staying fit and healthy to be able to keep running around with him as he gets older means a lot to me.
10. Avoid illness – regular exercise and a healthy diet gives your body the nutrients it needs and can help reduce free radicals. The stronger your immune system is, the better it can fight off the winter bugs and illnesses. A healthy lifestyle can help prevent high blood pressure, maintain healthy cholesterol levels, reduce your risk of diabetes and much more.
Now picture yourself 10 or 20 years in the future. What do you want to feel and look like? Do you want to be energised, happy, and fit or sluggish, unhappy, and overweight? The choice is yours. Those who are healthy everyday live longer, more fulfilling lives simply by sticking to their daily habits.
But remember wellness is a journey and nothing happens overnight. Look at the bigger picture and realise why it’s so important to you, so you can start making small changes and investing in your health today; it’s never too late.
Be the best version of you