I have been doing some research into better ways to live your life. Clean body, clean mind, is my mentality. In a bid to live in a more wholesome way, I’ve found ways to improve yourself everyday. Now I have to clarify I do/have done most of these things. I have some pretty unethical ways of losing weight and this is what I plan to change this year.
You might think that you’re pretty healthy right now – you haven’t needed to visit the doctor in who knows how long and you can still fit into your size ten jeans just fine, but if you’re indulging in the following habits, you could be setting yourself up for a sicker, fatter future….
Drinking from Plastic Bottles
You’ve probably heard a lot about how bad plastic is for the environment and the wild animals who live in it, thanks in large part to the wonderful Blue Planet 2, but did you know that plastic bottles could be causing your a whole lot of problems too. How? By increasing your risk of obesity. You see, the average plastic bottle contains Bisphenol A, more commonly known as BPA and there is research to suggest that the more of this you have in your system, the more likely you are to be very overweight.Not only that but BPA can have a negative effect on the fertility of both sexes too. Time to switch to a BPA free reusable bottle!
Okay, so this is an obvious one – smoking causes cancer, skin damage, heart disease and so many other health issues that I could write several posts on the effects of smoking alone, but it’s worth mentioning here because it has never been easier to improve your situation as a smoker. Why? Because with companies like Vapeshop’s online vaping store offer an affordable alternative in the form of vaping. When you ‘smoke’ an electronic cigarette, you do not take in all of the nasties that are produced when you burn tobacco, and there is some tentative evidence to suggest it helps people to give up completely much more easily than old alternatives like nicotine patches and gum.
Drinking Coffee Instead of Green Tea
There’s nothing wrong with drinking coffee in moderation – in fact, it can be quite beneficial – however, if you’re getting all of your caffeine fixes from coffee, then you might want to change your habits, switching some of those espressos for green tea. You see, green tea is full of catechins known as EGCG which help to speedup the fat burning process. It is also full of antioxidants which can help you to look younger for longer and generally improve your sense of wellbeing.
Staying Up Late
If you often stay up late, and you don’t get enough sleep (7-9 hours on average), you are doing yourself no favours because if you get too little sleep over a long period of time, you are not only more likely to become obese, but you’re also at an increased risk of developing stress, depression and even diabetes. If you don’t get enough shuteye simply because you cannot sleep, check out Holland and Barrett sleep supplements. If they don’t work, it may be worth talking to your GP to see if there is some other solution that can be reached.
Eating Whatever You Like
We all know those people who seem to be able to eat whatever they like and never gain a pound – Big Macs, pizzas, kebabs, endless glasses of wine – but those people are likely to be carrying a lot of internal fat and even if they aren’t we shouldn’t take their example because the healthiest way to look after one’s body is by practising moderation. If you eat a healthy balanced diet that is high in lean protein, fruits, vegetables and whole grains, and low in junk you will be better able to maintain your weight, build up a strong immune system and avoid serious illness, so do watch what you eat.
Eating Large Portions
Of course, even if you are eating healthily, that doesn’t mean that you can just help yourself and help yourself and help yourself some more. It’s easy to put on significant amounts of weight over time if you serve up portions that are too large. My Fitness Pal is a good resource for ensuring that you don’t eat too many calories for your needs. Try it out, and you’ll be a convert.
Avoiding all Fats
Some fats are undoubtedly bad for us, especially in large quantities and eating them can send your risk of heart disease soaring through the roof along with your waist measurement. However, if you shun fats completely, you could actually end up sicker and fatter than you would of otherwise. Why? Well, for one thing, healthy fats such as olive and avocado oils are very satiating, which means if you eat a small amount of them, you are less likely to snack between meals,and for another, there are many vitamins that can only be absorbed when taken with fat, so if you eat no fat, it could lead to deficiencies. Again, moderation is the key.
You Use too Much Salt
Salt is an essential part of our diet, and we need a small amount of it each day to keep our bodies functioning well. However, too much salt can lead to high blood pressure, bloating and heart problems. So, if you aren’t already, start monitoring your salt intake and ensure that you don’t take more than around 2300 mg each day. This will probably mean fewer crisps and ready meals, but that isn’t exactly a bad thing if you want to avoid getting fat and sick.
Consuming Fizzy Drinks
Okay, so if you only drink a can of Cola once a week, there’s no need to give up – it isn’t the healthiest option, but in moderation you have nothing to worry about – but if you drink lots of fizzy drinks and you drink the daily, it’s a habit you need to give up. A 330ml can of Coke contains no less than seven teaspoons of sugar, which is just under a third of the recommended daily does – other fizzy drinks, especially many energy drinks will have a lot more, and that means that they are contributing to diabetes and weight gain when taken regularly.
If you’re thinking you’re okay because you drink diet versions with no sugar think again because there is some evidence to suggest that artificial sweeteners spike the blood in the same way as the full sugar versions, making you feel hungry and encouraging weight gain. Switch to sparkling water instead.
If you come home from work every night and plonk yourself on the couch in front of the latest Netflix series not moving again until you go to bed, then you have a problem. Your habit could be increasing your risk of various cancers, adding excess weight to your body and helping you to lose muscle mass (not good). If you must watch so much Tv, then at least try to do some activity, such as running on the spot, pedalling a stationary bike or doing a few stretches at the same time.
If you think that always going for the low-fat option is a healthy habit, you are not alone, but what you are not alone in is being wrong. You see, for years we were told that low fat is the way to go if we want to lose weight and increase our health, but that’s not strictly true. As I Mentioned earlier, some fat in the diet is good for us, but more importantly, if you take a look at those low-fat yoghurts and ice creams you have in the kitchen, you will notice that they are absolutely loaded with sugar! The food companies have to give these things flavour somehow, and when fat is out, sugar is in! It’s usually a much better idea to buy the full fat, but eat a smaller portion than it is to go for the low or no fat option.
Bolting Your Food
If you’re in the habit of scarfing down your food as quickly as you can so that you can move on to the next thing, don’t be surprised if you never feel full and you eat much more (and gain weight) as a result. Ideally, you should spend at least 20 minutes eating your meals, so that your body has time to register that you are indeed full. Eating mindfully is a good way to ensure you eat more slowly. Alternatively, you could try dividing your meals into two and eating the second after an interval, so that you do feel those important fullness signals after all.
You’re a Plate Clearer
Your wise old mum may have told you that you should clear your plate, and it might be second nature to you now, but is is not at all a healthy habit. What is a healthy habit is eating until you’re approximately 80 percent full as the residents of Okinawa can tell you! So, eat less and save the leftovers for another day if necessary.
If you recognise any of these less than healthy habits in your own life, work at breaking them, and you’re much less likely to end up fat and sick in the future. It might not always be easy, but it will always be worth it.