We’re continuing the list and we’re getting closer to 101! The secret to success is to embrace simple habits that you can easily adapt into your lifestyle. Let’s move forward with the next 10
#60 Add a Plant to Your Home
I have a house full of plants. I’m kind of a crazy plant lady. In fact, when we moved from Colorado to Arizona, one of the things I worried most about was whether my plants would survive the trip. Yep, kinda crazy about them.
- Plants help you reduce stress – you might be surprised to learn that plants have been shown in repeated studies to reduce participant’s heart rate, blood pressure and respiratory problems. They lower the amount of cortisol released into your body.
- They clean the air too – plants are nature’s air filters. All plants are beneficial but for air cleansing, try a spider plant, snake plant,or peace lily. Did you know that Amazon sells plants? They do and the plants are affordable and extremely well rated. Of course you can find great plants at your local nursery too.
- They’re pretty – Your home is a place where you should feel comfortable and happy and plants can add to that ambiance.
These benefits are just the beginning. Plants have shown that plants can improve sleep, help you build a stronger immune system, and many plants create produce that you can enjoy like a lovely lemon tree or aloe vera for skin health. And did you know that Amazon has plants?! Yep, Costa Farms is highly rated and has a huge selection.
#61 Consume Resistant Starch
Resistant starch is a type of starch that isn’t fully broken down and absorbed, but rather turned into short-chain fatty acids by intestinal bacteria.
Resistant starch then helps you:
- Feel more full, increased satiety.
- Lower blood cholesterol and fats, while also decreasing the production of new fat cells
- Improve insulin sensitivity
- Helps reduce or eliminate problems from irritable bowel syndrome, diverticulitis, constipation, and ulcerative colitis.
So where do you find resistant starch?
- Cooked and cooled potatoes
- Green bananas
- Cooked and cooled rice
I like to add a tablespoon of potato starch to a glass of cold water in the morning. It’s flavorless and I’ve noticed a difference in my digestion, a significant difference. I use Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Potato Starch. (Thrive market carries it and so does Amazon if you can’t find it in your local market).
If you have insulin resistance, you have a digestive disorder, or you want to lose weight, give Resistant Starch a try. It’s an incredibly affordable step that you can take to improve your health.
#62 Sweeten With Honey
Honey has been used as a home remedy for hundreds of years. Even at work, we give honey in tea to patients with scratchy sore throats. Honey does have antibacterial and antimicrobial properties. It’s also been shown to have a positive effect on gum disease and bad breath, again due to the antibacterial properties.
It’s a prebiotic, which helps improve gut health and digestion (are you pooping enough? No, try adding a teaspoon of honey to your day). And if you have diabetes or pre-diabetes, consider adding honey to your diet rather than other sweeteners as it has been shown to have anti-diabetic effects consistently in both animal and human studies and can help regulate your blood sugar levels. Pretty cool, right?
If all of those benefits aren’t enough (and we haven’t touched on the numerous anti-cancer studies) then consider the fact that honey has a ton of nutrients including: vitamin K, chromium, sodium, calcium, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, selenium, copper, iron, manganese, zinc, niacin, riboflavin, thiamine, pantothenic acid, pyridoxine, folate, and vitamin C, along with a couple of amino acids.
How to use honey… Use it, instead of other sweeteners, in your dressings, sauces, and marinades
- Add it to your tea
- Drizzle a little on top of fresh fruit
- If you eat yogurt, try adding a teaspoon of honey to your plain yogurt
- Roast nuts, coat with honey, and let cool for a crunchy snack
- I like to warm a Siete casava tortilla, add a little almond butter and drizzle honey for a satisfying and nutritious snack. I also often add banana slices. YUM!
Adding this simple health tip into your day, or week, is easy. Find a bottle of local raw honey at your market and enjoy.
#63 Learn to Say NO
Chronic stress is extremely damaging to your health. It causes fat storage, digestive problems, poor sleep, and hormone imbalances.
Learning to say no and getting comfortable with it can help you achieve a better work/life balance. You need time for yourself to enjoy activities, relax, and unwind.
#64 Get Enough Protein
What’s “Enough” protein?
There are two ways to approach your protein intake calculation.
The first is to determine your lean body mass. This is your weight less your body fat. If you know your body fat percentage, then you can simply subtract that amount from your weight. Here’s a quick example. Say you weigh 200 pounds and your body fat percentage is 20%. 20% of 200 is 40. So your lean body mass is 200-140 or 160. You can then estimate that you need .7 to 1 grams of protein per pound of lean body mass or 112-160 grams of protein each day.
How do you determine the multiplier? If you have a lot of muscle mass, are engaging in an active strength training program, or if you work a strenuous and demanding job then you may want to consume more protein and lean toward a larger multiplier.
The other, easier, calculation is to consume .7 grams of protein per pound of body weight. Using the same 200 pound person that would be 140 grams of protein per day.
The first step is to make sure you’re getting enough protein. Track your intake for a few days to see how much you’re getting. If you’re getting enough and you’re feeling great, wonderful. If you’re falling short, it’s easy enough to add a little protein to your day.
#65 Darken The Room – Use Sleep Mask O Black Out Shades
You’ll get better sleep when you are able to sleep in complete darkness. You might be surprised how sensitive your body actually is to light. If you are able to sleep in complete darkness, you will likely get deeper sleep and experience better sleep cycles and improved health. Using a sleep mask or something as basic as black out shades
#66 Add HIIT To Your Weekly Exercise Routine
HIIT stands for High Intensity Interval Training and it’s one of the most effective ways to get a great workout. The best part….your intervals are based on YOUR abilities.
For example, a HIIT workout could include air squats, 20 seconds of work with 10 seconds of rest. Repeat for 4 minutes or 8 cycles. It could also be a 100 meter sprint followed by a 200 meter walk alternating for 20 minutes. “high-intensity interval training (HIIT) improves cardiometabolic risk factors such as waist circumference, % body fat, resting heart rate, systolic blood pressure and diastolic blood pressure in overweight/obese populations.” (Source: https://bjsm.bmj.com/content/51/6/494)
#67 Light Blocking Glasses At Night
These glasses block the blue light, which can interfere with your circadian rhythm and have a negative impact on your ability to get quality sleep. Just wear the glasses at night while you’re watching television, surfing the net on your phone or computer, or reading a book on your ereader.
#68 Drink A Full 8 Ounce Glass Of Water In The Morning, First Thing, Before Coffee
Did you know that one of the first signs of dehyration is fatigue. You feel sleepy. AND we often mistake thirst for hunger and eat when we should drink. The simple solution, and a good habit to help your body thrive, is to drink a glass of water first thing in the morning.
#69 Take The Stairs, Always
It’s not enough to log a workout at the gym each day. The more you move your body, the healthier you’ll be. Your body was designed to move and your systems including your immune system and your hormonal balance improve when you’re active. So get off the elevator, stay clear of the escalator and take the stairs.
#70 Set Fitness Goals
Set goals for yourself. Maybe it’s a heavy deadlift or the ability to run a mile without stopping. Maybe you want to be able to ride your bike in a local charity ride, or hike a mountain. Follow your heart and find a fitness goal that makes you smile and gets you excited to get out and move.
Choose one habit to embrace this week and get busy being a better YOU!