We only get one body, and it pays to take the best care of it we can. The demands of a modern lifestyle can make it tough to find time for physical self-care, though simple tweaks in our routine can make an astonishing, positive difference. This is our advice for keeping our body in tip-top nick on a day-to-day basis.
This one may seem obvious, and perhaps daunting to some. But ‘exercise’ needn’t mean spending hours a day in the gym, or training for a marathon. It can be as simple as making one small change in your routine, such as cycling to work instead of driving, or taking a brisk, ten-minute walk each day. ABC News points to studies showing just 10 minutes walking a day can significantly boost your cardiovascular fitness.
A healthy, balanced diet
To keep your body ticking over and energised, it needs the right type of fuel. It’s easy to be mind-boggled by the numerous fad diets advertised in the media, though most qualified nutritionists agree that a diet balanced in carbohydrates, protein, vegetables and fat is the best bet for a healthy body. Nutritionists from the BBC Good Health Guide have outlined the recommended daily amounts for men and women. Of course, you may have special nutritional requirements or allergies that make your diet plan a little different. A good way to motivate yourself to stick to a healthy diet plan is to keep a food journal, to note what you eat each day, plan meals and gather healthy recipes you want to try.
Treat problems as they arise
No matter how carefully we treat our bodies, injury and illness can interfere with our health. In the midst of a busy routine, it can be tempting to ignore or work through things such as foot or knee pain, joint injuries or persistent aches. However, the longer we go without addressing such things, the more pressing the risk of further injury or medical complication. Be sure to keep ‘in touch’ with your body, and pay due attention to anything like sudden or recurring pain, or pain after a fall or exercise session. In seeking medical advice, you might want to consider specialist consultants such as those at Highgate Hospital, who bring to bear expertise in all forms of knee pain and knee injuries causes. The better the treatment, the more quickly you can resume a full and active lifestyle.
Take care of your mind
More and more studies, such as this one by the Medical Research Council, are closely linking physical and mental health. Taking time to talk through any problems or stresses with someone trusted, or some dedicated quiet time for meditation or relaxation, can greatly improve one’s mood and outlook, and feed into motivation to be more physically active. Physical activity can, in turn, release endorphins which improve your mood. A good way to combine the two can be yoga, as the Guardian notes.