Being proactive about living a healthy lifestyle is not just about increasing your lifespan, but also just as importantly about optimizing the quality of your extra years in terms of feeling happy and fulfilled.
It is well known that there are certain habits that are consistent amongst people who are successful, happy and productive, (and who often subsequently tend to live longer), all of which are a lot easier to adopt and practice than you might think. The following are 10 of the many factors that make up a healthy lifestyle.
10 Factors Of A Healthy Lifestyle
1) Physical Activity And Fitness
Not only does exercising and staying active help keep your body healthy (especially your heart and cardiovascular system), but is also beneficial to your mental health as well in two ways; one being that exercise triggers the release of endorphins which give you a sense of euphoria, and the other that physically fit people tend to have a healthier self-image and higher self-esteem which can generate an overall feeling of happiness.
2) Close Ties With Family
Forming and maintaining close and substantive relationships with your family members can contribute to your health by giving you a sense of safety and stability, and that confidence will manifest in your ability to interact with the world around you in a healthy way.
3) Maintaining A Healthy Diet
Refined sugars, saturated fats, and processed foods can be a real drag on your metabolism and even affect your immune system, causing you to be fatigued and predisposes you to become sick more often. Eating foods that promote physiological well-being will simply make you feel better, which in turn will make you happy more often than depressed.
4) Getting Enough Sleep
Numerous studies have been done on sleep and the correlation with both physical and mental health, and from those studies, an overwhelming amount of evidence has been generated that has proven that getting the right amount of high quality, restful sleep at the appropriate intervals has a measurable and direct impact on our health and happiness.
5) Keep Stress To A Minimum
Obviously, life is going to be inevitably stressful at times for everyone, and not all stress is necessarily negative, however, in excess stress causes chronic damage to every part of us, physically and mentally, so finding ways to avoid and alleviate stress is crucial to participating in a healthy lifestyle.
6) Sex And Intimacy
Being engaged in a healthy relationship with a partner and engaging in intimate activities on a regular basis is most certainly a common factor amongst people who live healthy lifestyles. Not only because the act of intercourse is exercise and is a natural de-stressor, but also because being in a healthy romantic relationship with another person is an important contributor to our happiness and mental well-being.
7) Diversify Your Hobbies
Studies have also shown that people who only watch television or surf the internet in their spare time do get sicker more often than people who have a variety of activities that they participate in such as reading, writing, painting, hiking, etc. Some television or internet obviously is fine, however, when the amount of time spent in front of the television or computer reaches excessive levels, the health factor of your lifestyle is significantly diminished.
8) Maintain A Healthy Social Life
Of course, it’s natural for some people to be introverted and others extroverted, however, being an extreme recluse and not having any kind of social life can be damaging to your happiness. Having and maintaining friendships outside of work and family is a really important part of what it means to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
9) All Things In Moderation
There is nothing wrong with enjoying adult beverages, especially when alcohol is part of healthy social interaction with family or friends, however, drinking is something that can easily go from an acceptable (even healthy) amount to excessive, and drinking to excess is most certainly detrimental to being able to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
10) No Tobacco
This concept is obvious for reasons we are all well aware of by now. There is no room for cigarettes or other carcinogenic tobacco products in a healthy lifestyle regimen.