Have you ever wondered how some people never seem to get sick? Whilst you’re battling through colds, flu, migraines and whatever other afflictions you have the misfortune to succumb to, they just carry on as normal without a care in the world. Recent studies in the US show that the average worker takes a full week off work in a normal year. Add to that the number of people that just soldier on through their maladies and turn up to work regardless and you’ve got a lot of sickness going around. So how come some people get a free pass? Let’s have a look at some simple ways people stay healthy without trying too hard.
The answers which most people don’t want to hear are probably the most important: diet and exercise. If you spend your evenings chowing down a big pizza, chugging on a six pack of beer and sitting on the sofa, you shouldn’t be too surprised when your body decides it can’t be bothered keeping you free from disease any more. It doesn’t have to be beer and pizza, either – if you enjoy too many cups of sugary tea and cakes at the vicarage, your body is probably not going to thank you, either. You don’t have to go crazy and throw out all the contents of your cupboards, though – just make sure you’re eating balanced meals with fruit, greens and as little processed food as possible. If you’re a smoker, do a quick internet search to list all of the poisonous chemicals you are polluting your body with. That should help explain why you don’t always feel great!
As for exercise, you don’t have to go off joining a gym or taking up squash (although it’s probably a very good idea). You can start making changes by choosing to walk or cycle places that you previously would have driven to. Take a walk around the block, or even better a light jog. If you really don’t want to go outside, get yourself an elliptical trainer or a treadmill and use it whilst you’re watching TV. There are so many different types available these days that you’ll be able to find one that is a great match for you. Indoorellipticals.com clearly states the pros and cons of the market leaders, in case you need some guidance.
Another key to staying healthy is to get enough quality sleep. If you know you’re not sleeping properly, or if you constantly wake up feeling exhausted, pay a visit to your doctor as there may be an underlying condition such as sleep apnoea which needs to be addressed. Fix your bedtime and waking time and stick to them. Try to train your body to sleep when it goes dark outside and to wake up when the sun comes up. Many people can sleep without an alarm and are never late for work. Expose yourself to natural sunlight during the daytime and avoid too much light in the evenings, when your body is preparing to sleep. Don’t watch TV or play with your smartphone in bed.
An often neglected part of our health is our mental well being. Make sure you engage in fulfilling relationships. Express your joys and frustrations instead of keeping them hidden within yourself. Do things which you find stimulating – creative hobbies such as cookery and pottery are great for this. It’s great to read a book or watch a movie, but you are only stimulating your mind passively in doing so. Even writing a diary requires you to actively create something. Learn how to relax your mind and body. It’s useful to have a period of reflection every day for 20 minutes or so. Challenge yourself in small ways – make a calculation without a calculator or learn to recite a poem. Play chess.
Looking after your health and staving off illness shouldn’t be a chore or something you tick off on a list, it should just be part of who you are and the way you live. Make the right choices in your daily life. As the saying goes, “get the small things right and the big things will take care of themselves.”