Monthly Archives: September 2018

5 Ways to Live a Healthier Life

With the advance of modern medicine, people are living longer today than at any time in history. Life expectancy has increased significantly over the decades, cures have been found for diseases which were previously untreatable, and infant mortality rates have dropped dramatically.

We have a lot to celebrate – there’s no arguing with that. But whilst we’re certainly living longer lives, are we also living healthier lives?

It seems that the answer to this is no. Gains in longevity have far outweighed gains in the overall health of the population. It’d be easy to think this doesn’t matter. After all, we’re living longer, so who cares if we’re healthier?

Well, some would argue that it’s not just about the length of your life, it’s about the quality of your life. A third of us will now fail to reach the age of 65 in good health. Arthritis, obesity, respiratory problems are just a few of the problems that continue to plague us in our retirement years and reduce the quality of our life.

To help reach old age in the healthiest state possible, and give yourself the best chance of feeling fit and healthy later in life, there are a few changes you can make to your lifestyle.

With that in mind, let’s look at 5 actionable steps you can take today to lead a healthier life:

1. Eat More Fruits and Vegetables

Humans evolved to be hunters and gatherers. That means we’re supposed to eat both meat and fruits and vegetables. Whilst this shows that a little bit of meat is good, people often forget that, historically, early humans wouldn’t have been able to access meat on the scale we can today. They primarily relied on fruits and vegetables for sustenance.

If you want to live a healthier, more natural life, you should aim to replicate this and eat a lot more fruit and vegetables than you probably are now. Fruits and vegetables deliver a lot of vitamins and minerals that our bodies need to keep our immune system working optimally. Aim to eat at least 5 fruits and vegetables per day, with as much variety as possible, and you’ll probably see a difference in your overall health.

2. Ditch the Car for Shorter Journeys

Most of us work five days a week, and many of us also have to commute to our workplace. Typically, commuters make the journey by car, bus, or train, but these probably aren’t the healthiest option.

If your work is half an hour or less away by foot, why not walk or ride a bicycle to work instead? This will help you to get more exercise in per day, which will, in turn, help to keep your cardiovascular system in good shape.

If you’re overweight, it can also help you to lose weight, which will increase your chances of living a long and healthy life.

3. Get 8 Hours of Sleep Per Night

Sleep is important. That’s why almost all mammals need to sleep in one way or another. Our brain needs ‘downtime’ in much the same way that your computer should be turned off when you’re not using it to keep it in working optimally.

Whilst we don’t fully understand why we need sleep, researchers at least know that it’s important. It allows us to replenish and sort through our experiences and memories. A lack of sleep can cause mental health issues, so make sure you’re getting enough shuteye, which means getting at least 8 hours of sleep per night.

4. Quit smoking

It probably doesn’t need to be said – most people know by now – that smoking is bad for you. It can cause respiratory and heart problems and even increases the risk of lung cancer.

If you’re struggling to stop smoking cigarettes on your own, there’s no shame in asking for help. Consult your doctor and they may recommend some ways to help you stop. You could also try using hypnosis to stop smoking, in which a therapist will help you to conquer your addiction.

5. Think positively

It might seem like a small change, but a positive attitude can help to promote a healthy mind and body. Try to focus on the good things rather than the bad. This can be difficult for some people, but it’s worth making the effort for the benefits it can bring.

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What Are The Benefits of Organic Produce?

Organic food is a term we hear a lot in the modern day and a controversial topic to some. On Instagram, Twitter, and all other social media platforms, there are hordes of people promoting organic diets in one way or another. However, despite the apparent popularisation of organic meals, information regarding the actual benefits of organic food is often hard to come by. In this article, we will explain some of the ways that eating organic foods can be beneficial to both you and the animals you are consuming.

1. Organic Food Can Contain Fewer Pesticides

A good percentage of non-organic produce is grown using raised levels of pesticides. Fungicides, insecticides and herbicides are used to help vegetables to grow without being affected by pests that may reduce the harvest. However, some argue that the residue left by these chemical products can be harmful to human health. Indeed, this may be true as studies have indicated that pesticides could be linked to the development of cancers including leukemia, lymphoma and prostate cancer This means that meals prepared using organic produce may be healthier as the vegetables are grown naturally, without the use of an excessive amount of chemicals.

2. Organically Raised Animals Have A Better Quality of Life

Animals that aren’t raised organically can often be farmed in a way that many people may feel is unhealthy. Often, they are fed using animal byproducts or given growth hormones to enhance their market value. Organically-raised animals, on the other hand, are not fed using animal by-products, which significantly reduces their risk of carrying diseases like mad cow disease. Their lifestyles are also much healthier as they aren’t given any sort of antibiotics and are usually reared in a free range environment.

3. Organic Animal Products Are Richer In Nutrients

Recent studies into organic animal products have proven that meat and milk produced from organically-reared animals are more nutrient-rich. Levels of certain nutrients, including Omega 3 fatty acids, were proven to be as much as 50% higher in organic animals than they were in conventionally-raised animals.

4. Some Vegetables Contain More Antioxidants

Although this hasn’t been proven for all organic vegetables, the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry recently proved that onions that had been grown organically contained around 20% more antioxidants than their conventionally-grown counterparts. Antioxidants can benefit your health in many ways, such as aiding skin cell repair and supporting the bodies immune system.

5. Organic food doesn’t contain GMOs

‘GMO’ is short for genetically modified organisms. GMOs, in simple terms, are plants and produce that have had their DNA altered. The main purpose of modifying the DNA is to cause the plant to produce insecticides or be resistant to pesticides. GMOs are still a relatively new area of science, negative effects, that GMOs can have on the consumer. In addition to this, the ethics of genetic alterations have also been brought into question. For these reasons, many people opt for organic foods in order to steer clear of GMOs.

Despite the many positives of eating organic foods, there are a few things that may still leave you opting for conventionally-farmed foods. One of these is the price. Traditionally, organic foods are much more expensive than their conventionally-farmed counterparts.

However, as the demand for organic food continues to grow, it’s becoming easier and more affordable to switch to an organic diet. Now that you are armed with the facts about eating organic, you can hopefully make a more informed decision next time you visit the supermarket. Happy shopping!

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