The word “wellness” has become somewhat of a buzzword these days. What exactly is it that makes wellness different from fitness, or health? Simply put, wellness is the sum of all the factors that affect your physical and mental well-being. It means not just being disease-free and in shape, but also eating healthy and taking care of your mental health.
So, how do you stay well? Here are a few tips for improving wellness in 2021.
Rethink Your Diet
There’s an old computer programmer saying that goes: “garbage in, garbage out.” This applies to wellness as much as to anything else. If all you’re eating is fast food five days a week, you’re not getting the nutrition your body needs to build muscle, fight off disease, and support your mental health.
But in our busy world, not everybody has the time to prepare their own food every day. You’re a busy person. Between work, family, and your social life, how do you find the time to eat right? One way is to subscribe to a service that delivers healthy meals right to your front door. There are many of these available, from basic meal packages to a full lifestyle reset.
A lifestyle reset is similar to a normal meal package, but it’s designed for people who are trying to adopt a healthier lifestyle. The focus is twofold; to provide the most convenient possible foods for a busy person, and to provide badly-needed nutrients for people who haven’t been eating well. The meals are designed to go on the road, with a lot of nutritionally rich broths, smoothies, and superfoods.
Spend Time on Better Skin Care
Your skin is your body’s largest organ, and it also takes the most abuse. It gets dirty, it gets sunburned, it gets dried out in the elements. As a result, it has to constantly repair itself, more so than any other organ. This requires a compound called collagen, which gives our skin flexibility and elasticity.
But as we age, our bodies produce significantly less collagen. By the time you reach the age of 60, your body is producing less than half the collagen it did when you were in your 20s. This can lead to rough, dry, and textured skin.
There’s no way to completely avoid the effects of aging – it happens to all of us. But with the right skincare for textured skin, you can significantly smooth out your skin. This is a simple, three-part process. First, you need to exfoliate, and scrub away the dead skin cells on the surface of your skin. By clearing this, you’ll encourage younger, healthier skin cells to grow in. Next, you need to smooth your skin, and use products that correct discoloration. Finally, you need to moisturize, to help keep your skin from drying out.
Make Your Bedtime Routine Healthier
The average adult needs somewhere between 7 and 9 hours of sleep, depending on individual factors. If you don’t get a good night’s sleep, both your mental and your physical health can suffer. Mentally, you can lose focus, and your short-term memory may suffer. Physically, you’ll feel tired, and your immune system won’t be as effective as it can be. Needless to say, getting a good night’s sleep is important. And the first step to getting one is to establish a relaxing nighttime routine.
To begin with, start by getting your brain ready for bed before you go to bed. This begins with setting a normal sleep-wake cycle. If at all possible, try to go to bed and wake up at the same time every day. This will establish a more regular circadian rhythm, and train your brain to expect to go to sleep at a particular time. When your brain is expecting to sleep, it will start winding down on its own a few hours before bedtime. If you need a warm tea or a nightcap to help you sleep, drink it at the same time every night. Again, this will help to train your brain to fall asleep.
Another important thing to do is to create a good environment for sleeping. Use calming colors, and set the thermostat to a cooler temperature – somewhere below 70 degrees. Turn off all your devices with displays – TVs, smartphones, and computers – and put on some soothing music or ambient noise if you need to drown out outside noise. Invest in some quality anti bacterial sheets, and a mattress topper if your mattress is too stiff.
Finally, don’t get into bed until it’s actually time to fall asleep. If you want to sit up reading a book, do it in another room, or even in a chair next to your bed. As soon as you’re laying down, the only thing your brain should be thinking about is sleep.
Don’t Neglect Your Morning Routine
Your morning routine is just as important as your bedtime routine. Not only does it have just as much to do with your sleep cycle, but it sets the tone for how you start your day. To help with the first part, find an alarm or alarm app that wakes you up gently, over the course of 10 or 15 minutes. The reason is that when a sudden alarm goes off, it can interrupt your sleep cycle. If you’re awakened abruptly from a deep sleep, you might end up feeling groggy for hours. With a slower, gentler alarm, your body gradually transitions from deep sleep to wakefulness, leaving you feeling refreshed.
Once you’re awake, put on some tunes while you get ready for your day. An upbeat playlist can help you feel energized, and set the right mood for the morning, so go ahead and listen to your favorite tracks while you take your shower and make your breakfast.
Speaking of breakfast, it’s important to eat a healthy one. Some people wake up in the morning ravenously hungry and ready for a big meal. Some of us still feel full and just want something light to start the day. The most important thing is that it’s healthy and nutritious. Fruits, proteins, and vegetables are a great way to start, as are healthy fats, which give you “slow burn” energy to last through the day. Avoid eating too many carbs, though, since they can make you feel sleepy.
Invest in Your Mental Health
Ultimately, you’re only as well as you feel. There are millions of fit, healthy people who suffer from depression or anxiety that keeps them from living their best lives. To be truly well, you need to take the time to make sure your mind is healthy.
There are many ways to do this. Two easy ways are exercise and meditation. Exercise relieves stress by causing your body to release endorphins, your body’s happiness hormone. Not only that, but it’s healthy for your body as well. Meditation helps you adjust the way you experience the world. By taking some time to be mindful and experience a quiet moment, you can better adjust to stress when it comes around.
Finally, therapy is a great way to manage many mental health struggles. You can go in person, or use an online therapy service such as Mood Mental Health.