From eating more avocados to swapping your expensive eye cream for strawberries, and reverting to a teenager to keep a diary, here are my tips for becoming happier and healthier, today!
#1 Do more puzzles
To live a long and well life, keep your brain active by doing puzzles or learning a language. It keeps your mind active in to your old age.
#2 Eat avocados
Avocados are in the Guinness Book of World Records for being the healthiest food on earth. People worry they’re fattening, but they contain essential fatty acids, needed by the body to survive.
#3 Make your diet mainly plant-based
You don’t need to be vegetarian, but studies suggest people who eat meat two to three times a week live longer and healthier lives.
#4 Ignore low-fat or sugar free foods
Sweeteners such as aspartame have been linked to neurological problems, cancers and memory problems.
#5 Get your Vitamin D
We’re all lacking in it, because we don’t get enough sunlight in the UK. Vitamin D deficiency is linked with weak bones, fatigue and aching muscles. See your GP or health care practitioner for more advice.
#6 Walk for half an hour a day
It’s all you need to get your recommended amount of exercise. It could also be effective in treating mild to moderate depression.
#7 Do something nice for someone
Studies have shown doing nice things for others boosts the “natural happy chemicals” in the brain. And it’s easy.
#8 Eat a banana a day
Bananas can make you happier. They contain a mood-regulating substance called tryptophan which gets converted to serotonin, the happiness chemical, in the brain, thus elevating your mood.
#9 Make your own fresh juice
An easy way to get more than the recommended five a day. The nutrients get straight in to your cells without needing digestion and are a great energy boost.
#10 Buy organic
To avoid eating fruit and vegetables covered in pesticides and other chemicals. The foods with the highest pesticide levels are apples, strawberries, leafy greens, peppers and potatoes.
#11 Reduce your weight by 10%
If needed. It’s been shown to lower your blood pressure by 10 points on both figures.
#12 Strawberries are the best eye cream
They don’t just taste delicious, they also reduce under-eye puffiness, leave your hair looking glossy and conditioned, help clear up acne and smoothen the skin.
#13 Turn off your mobile phone
Your mobile phone and wi-fi may be stopping you having a good night’s sleep. They omit rays that can interfere with your natural sleep cycle. Turn them off at night to see if you’re sensitive.
#14 Eat more Omega-3
The fatty acids found in supplements or oily fish like salmon or mackerel protect your heart and improve your memory.
#15 Stop cooking
It’s estimated 51% of your diet should be raw foods.
1½ litres of water a day will help you lose weight and improve your skin.
#17 Exercise now
If you don’t want to lose your mobility in old age, you don’t have to. It’s a case of “use it or lose it” – if you exercise now it will keep you mobile in later years.
#18 See someone
Don’t ignore those back pains. See an acupuncture specialist, chiropractor or an osteopath.
#19 Take breaks
The majority of back pain is caused by sitting too much and bad posture. Try to improve your posture and if you have a sedentary job, get up for little walking breaks or stretches.
We were not designed to sit in a chair all day. Stretch as much as possible whenever possible. It’s free and effective in improving your mobility and getting rid of muscular pains.
#21 Be happy
Happier and optimistic people have been scientifically proven to live longer than their unhappy and negative counterparts. Nobel Prize-winning research has shown stress is as bad for your health as smoking.
#22 Write down your goals
People who do have been proven to achieve them in comparison to people who don’t.
So, visualise your success.
For reducing stress, the best rhythm is four seconds in, seven seconds out. Having a longer out-breath stabilises the heart rhythm and reduces risks of long-term illness.
#24 Keep a journal
A diary acts as an outlet for our emotions and allows us to voice our opinions and can help see the situation more clearly. Every morning write down three things you are grateful for and do the same before bed. Remembering the good in our lives and appreciating positives keeps our stress levels down.