Resolving to be healthier is not that hard

One of the most common New Year’s resolutions out there is to “be more healthy” but for a lot of people, myself included, that can be difficult. Thankfully you don’t have to go it alone. To help get you on your way, here are some tips on how to have a healthier 2019.

I’m sure plenty of you are slapping your heads and muttering “well duh” under your breath but there’s a reason exercise is an important part of any health programme.

The great thing about exercise is that there are literally hundreds of ways you can do it, so you’re always sure to find something to suit you. It can be done in public spaces or your own home; it can be done privately or in groups (more on that in a bit); it can be a simple jog to a complex programme designed by a team of professionals.

The point is that exercise is one of the best ways to maintain a good standard of health and is something we all need to do more of.

Join a sports club/exercise group
Speaking of exercise, one of the best ways to go about it is to join a sports club. Joining a sports club is a great plan. There are plenty of clubs in and around East London, all catering to a variety of different activities such as running, rowing, cricket, rugby, and so on.

KEEPING HEALTHY: Exercise is one of the most important parts of a healthy lifestyle

Clubs allow one you to exercise with a large group of like-minded people and believe me, few things motivate you quite like knowing the people next to you are struggling just as hard as you to climb that hill.

If you want a group exercise but find clubs too social for your liking, you can always attend specialised classes at your local gym. While your options may be a bit more limited, there are still enough choices that you can find something to suit your tastes. For example, the gym I go to offers classes in spinning, spin bikes, aerobics, yoga, and swimming, all at different levels of intensity. The only downside is you’ll need to be a gym member to take part.

Eat well
Exercise is certainly important but equally vital is having a healthy diet. You can be the ultimate sports freak but that won’t help you much if your cholesterol is through the roof.

Now everyone is different and depending on your circumstances (if you have high blood pressure, for example), you may need to visit a dietitian in order to get a personalised plan.
However, there are plenty of diet tips that can apply to almost everyone. For one, make sure to include plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables in your diet. These provide a number of vital nutrients that your body needs and are an important part of any healthy diet.

You don’t necessarily need to go full vegan but at the same time you should focus on eating them as often as you can.

Another important thing to consider is cutting out sugary treats such as chocolate and soft-drinks from your diet. For many, this is the hardest part of dieting. After all, who doesn’t like a Coke or a chocolate Snickers now and then? Unfortunately, processed sugar is terrible for the your body and can contribute to serious problems like high blood pressure and diabetes.
If you absolutely have to have something sweet, look for sugar- free soft-drinks (every major brand has one now) and try replacing sugary sweet treatsyour candy with dried fruit or nuts.

You should also ditch swap out the sugar in your tea or coffee for sweetener.

Reduce stress
Hypertension is known as the “silent killer” because it doesn’t have any obvious symptoms.
Some people might never even know they have it until it’s too late. Hypertension is characterised by extremely high blood pressure, either due to genetic or lifestyle factors.
Left untreated, it can lead to heart attacks or strokes.

In addition to the advice given so far, a good way to help manage your blood pressure is to try and reduce your stress. Like exercise (which is one option), there are a number of ways you can do this. You could take up a hobby, something you enjoy doing that allows you to relax and take your mind off your problems, even if it’s only for an hour at a time.

Meditation is also an effective method and requires little more than a quiet space to yourself. Admittedly, it does take some practise to get used to and might not be for everybody.

Yoga is also said to be great at reducing stress levels and there are classes available around the East London/King William’s Town area. Whatever it is that helps, the important thing is that it helps you relax and keep calm which in turn will help lower your blood pressure.On top of the health benefits, you’ll just feel happier as well


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