180 Nutrition: In 2016, Australia was ranked as one of the 10 healthiest countries in the world. Life expectancy has consistently risen, reaching 82.5 years in 2018. However, have longer lives equated to healthier lives? While the government and national organisations in the country continue to implement health performance frameworks to encourage improvement in the healthcare system, there is much to be said about the responsibility for your health that lies with yourself. Technology and healthcare have come a long way, but the decision to become healthy (and remain that way) begins with one person: you. There is much more to being healthy than simply including healthy foods in your daily diet, and it all begins with accepting responsibility. If you are looking to take control of your health and well-being, take a look at a few ways to get started.
Build Your Relationship With Your Body
Getting to know your body will kickstart your journey to being healthier and feeling in control of your body. Everyone’s bodies are individual and unique. Become familiar with the effects that different diets and foods can have on your digestion, your mental well-being and other aspects of your health. Knowing the way your body works will lead to you to making the right decisions when it comes to medication, lifestyle and doing what is best for your health. Regular check-ups with your doctor are a good start, but be sure to include your mental health as well. Take note of how influences such as stress can affect your daily habits, physical body, and even your sleep. Once you are comfortable with your body, you can then begin to make changes to improve it.
Actively Commit To Habits
A large part of getting, and remaining healthy is incorporating healthy habits into your life. To do this requires a commitment to bettering yourself, your health and changing any undesirable habits you may have. This means an effort in the long term to eat healthily, lead an active life and make time for self-care. In 2017, it was shown that people who exercise regularly and eat a healthy diet can cut their risk of dying by as much as 50 percent.
While doing these things can produce benefits in the short term, it is the long term commitment to them that sustains these benefits. After a while, it will become a habit and almost second nature. It is said that it takes 21 days to form a new habit. Healthy habits and lifestyle choices also look very different for everyone. Therefore, it’s important to tailor this to your specific life. For some, strict gluten-free diets and a very rigorous exercise routine produces optimum results. For others, a lighter or slower start is more suitable. Regardless of what stage you’re at, it is important to acknowledge both your progress and failures; holding yourself accountable allows for self-enhancement.
Remember Your Mental And Emotional Well-being
Being healthy does not solely consist of optimal physical health, but includes your mental and emotional health as well. It should be noted that these three aspects of one’s health are all interrelated, and therefore impact each other. Poor mental health can affect the choices and motivation in your daily routine that, in turn, influence your commitment to being active or even spur poor food choices. Anxiety and stress have also been linked to poor sleep patterns, an issue that Australians are facing presently. Poor sleep further compounds your overall health, including your cognitive functions.
A healthy life begins with you taking control. Taking care of yourself and your body is the most important thing you can do to secure your future. Better decisions today can mean a healthier tomorrow.
This article was written by Jane Munro a health enthusiast and freelance writer.