Most people think healthy living involves sacrificing the things they love. But being healthy doesn’t have to be a struggle. It doesn’t have to be about strict diets, aggressive workout routines, or inflexible commitments. There are plenty of ways to boost your whole-body health without overhauling your lifestyle completely. Here are some small but effective health strategies to incorporate into your regular routine.
Make the Most of Your Medical Care
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, going to the doctor for regular checkups is essential for finding potential health problems before they start. This is especially important for seniors who face a higher risk of certain diseases. A good healthcare coverage plan can ensure that you get the services, screenings, and treatments you need to live a long and healthy life. Take some time to evaluate your current Medicare coverage and check if there is another plan out there that will better meet your needs. For example, Medicare Advantage plans from Humana include access to fitness programs as well as dental and vision care. Even if you’re not a senior, it’s a good idea to review your healthcare insurance on a regular basis to ensure you have access to beneficial health services.
Supplement Your Diet with Vitamins
While the best way to get essential vitamins and minerals is through the foods we eat, this isn’t always enough. If you don’t eat a wide variety of nutritional foods, you may have some nutritional gaps that leave you feeling weak and lethargic and may even increase your risk of illness. Nutritional deficiencies are a common problem for people with certain diet restrictions—for example, vegans and vegetarians tend to lack vitamin B12, zinc, and iron. Supplementing your diet with multivitamins can ensure that you get all of the key nutrients your body needs to function well, even if your diet consists of healthy whole foods. Plexus Worldwide recommends taking a good multivitamin to improve your mood, boost your energy, bolster your gut health, and keep your skin happy.
Swap Out Empty Carbs
Carbohydrates get a bad rap, but we need these sugars, starches, and fibers to fuel our bodies. It’s true, however, that some carbs are better than others. According to the Harvard Medical School, foods made with refined flour, including white bread and pasta, are void of nutrients and high in sugar. On the other hand, complex carbs found in whole grains, fruits, vegetables, beans, and nuts are packed with essential vitamins and minerals. A relatively easy way to start eating healthier is to swap out empty carbs for healthier options, like whole grains, legumes, and vegetables. Making small changes to your diet over time is the best way to adopt healthy eating habits that last.
Avoid Sugary Beverages
Like empty carbs, sugar-filled beverages are a common health hazard. Research has found that sugary drinks are associated with heart disease, diabetes, and obesity. Believe it or not, the average can of soda contains nearly 10 teaspoons of sugar! Sugar also hides in a variety of other beverages, including fruit juice, sports drinks, pre-bottled smoothies, and certain coffee beverages. Try swapping out these sugary drinks for water. Drinking water is important for fighting fatigue, keeping our brains sharp, and maintaining glowing skin. Try infusing your water with lemon or fresh berries to make it more appealing. You can also try swapping the soda for flavored carbonated water!
Often, people try to transform their lifestyle overnight, adopting challenging health and fitness strategies that are so unforgiving they’re nearly impossible to maintain long-term. Instead, try taking small steps for your health. Take a multivitamin, go to the doctor, and start making smart food swaps in your daily diet. Conquering these smaller goals will set you up for greater success on your journey to healthy living.
Written by Jennifer McGregor