Do you want to live well and long? Then zoom in on these 10 habits.
- Skip the harsh diets
A cure can certainly make you lose weight in the short run. But there is also a high risk that it will rise again afterwards, and then you are (at best) just as far. So rather aim for a healthy lifestyle that can keep you going for a long life, with sensible eating habits, real food that you like and habits that you can realistically stick to.
- Long live optimism
Did you know that a positive outlook on life lowers the risk of heart disease? It may sound a bit long-haired, but nonetheless, it is true that optimism can have life-prolonging effects because it reduces your stress level. So practice looking at the half of the glass that is still full, rather than the one that is empty.
- A bowl of green tea
Equip your heart for a long and good life with green tea. The green tea contains flavonoids, which prevent cholesterol from depositing and thus reduce the risk of atherosclerosis and blood clots. Pst! Avoid refuelling the tea with sugar.
- Move it – every day!
Your body, brain, metabolism, muscle mass and your cholesterol level will thank you for making it a good habit to move daily.
The official advice from the National Board of Health says at least 30 minutes of daily physical activity at moderate to high intensity, and this includes both walking on stairs and gardening at the weekend, the run, the spinning class, or the bike ride to work, so it actually requires no marathon effort to meet the quota. To get the best effect on your heart – and e.g. reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease – however, keep your heart rate up in the red zone at least twice a week.
- Get Fit with Fat
Healthy unsaturated fats are a health booster for your body. Without it, it cannot absorb the many fat-soluble minerals and vitamins it needs, and the risk of high cholesterol, atherosclerosis and blood clots increases.
Therefore, it’s recommended that 25-40% of the daily energy intake comes from fat, of which the largest part (at least 2/3) comes from unsaturated varieties. Get the fat from i.a. nuts, seeds and kernels, avocados and fatty fish.
- Sleep for several years
The good news is that you can sleep to get a long life. Almost. A good night’s sleep reduces your risk of high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease.
And if you are fresh and rested, you have as a bonus much more energy to exercise and eat healthy, so it is a double win!
Find a good sleep routine, turn down the lights and electronic devices an hour before bedtime, drop the coffee and red wine in the hours up to, keep the bedroom nice and cool – and do not be stingy with the clean bedding.
- Keep cola-free during the weekdays
The bonus of cutting your soda consumption is evidently. The sweet drink firstly contains many unnecessary calories that no satiety provides, just as research shows that large consumption of soda can affect your level of potassium and inhibit heart function.
And yes, you can get around the sugar and calorie issues by drinking light products. But studies have shown that artificially sweetened beverages can still lead to weight gain and obesity – and thus still have a number of health risks in the wake.
- Make sex a habit
It should almost be prescribed by a doctor – sex – because it works wonders for your health and can lower both stress levels and blood pressure. People who have sex once or twice a week have more antibodies against bacteria and viruses and thus a sharper immune system. And sex provides better sleep. So if you miss reasons to throw yourself into the sheets, you have them right here.
- Say goodbye to smoke
It probably does not occur to you that smoking is one of the habits you should NOT stick to if you are aiming for a long and healthy life. For even a little smoking – even in the passive form – increases your risk of cardiovascular disease and a sea of other disorders at the heavy end of the scale. So the short advice is: Stay away from the smoke!
- Friends make you long-lasting
Do not underestimate how much socializing means for your odds of living a long and happy life. Good relationships boost mood and quality of life and reduce the risk of stress and of developing depression. So remember to create space for family and friends in everyday life – then you invest together in your common future.