If you’re clueless about how to eat well or stick to a workout routine, don’t fret. Don’t get me wrong it’s important to do both but, even those who think they’re doing all they can to maximize their health get things wrong, often daily. If you really want to be in tip-top shape, watch out for these 5 common mistakes.
1. Low water intake
The standard rule of drinking eight glasses of water per day is probably going overboard, but most people go way too far in the other direction. Only drinking at mealtime just isn’t enough, and this constant state of dehydration can negatively affect your mood, energy, and even your heart. Dehydration can also lead to weight gain because the body’s signals for thirst and hunger are so similar that many confuse one for the other. You could be eating hundreds of calories your body doesn’t need simply because you haven’t been downing enough H2O.
The best strategy for fixing this problem is by always carrying water with you. Invest in a water bottle, or keep a drinking glass at your office. Adding a few slices of citrus fruit or cucumber helps give the beverage a bit more taste, which will encourage you to tank up.
2. Holding it
It’s easy to get so wrapped up in a project that you ignore nature’s call long after you realized you needed to hit the rest room. Holding off on using the restroom can negatively impact your health. According to The Huffington Post Canada, resisting the urge to urinate can cause your bladder to stretch out and encourage bacteria to grow. If things get too bad, these bacteria can cause a kidney infection.
Holding it in from the backside is equally as bad. Allowing excrement to build up in your system leads to constipation and could even affect your ability to go in the future. There’s a reason we call it waste, so get it out of your system.
3. Not enough sleep
Many of us don’t get enough sleep and try to make up the difference by downing a few extra cups of coffee. Though the caffeine can certainly give you a little boost, it’s no substitute for the real thing. Those who regularly find themselves running on little sleep experience an increased risk of depression, cancer, memory loss, and heart disease. The habit could even lead to an early grave.
Aim to get an absolute minimum of six hours every night; eight hours is even better. Sticking to a regular sleep schedule is the best way to make sure you’re able to fall and stay asleep, so try to be as disciplined as you can. That goes for weekends, too. A little sleeping in is fine, but don’t go overboard.
4. Not protecting your skin
If you find you’re only applying sunscreen when you’re on the beach, then you need to remember that the sun can do real damage to your skin in the fall, winter, and spring, too. Everyone knows that sunburns can increase the risk of skin cancer, but those who are not prone to burning are also at risk from the sun’s rays. The Cleveland Clinic explains everyone should wear sunblock with at least 30 SPF, and if it’s not the summertime, then be sure to still apply some to exposed skin before heading outdoors. Remember: Repeated exposure to the sun without protection can cause damage to the skin over time even if you can’t see it. Also make sure you keep your skin hydrated with a great moisturizing lotion and body wash like SCRUB which is all natural.
5. Bad posture
Everyone slouches from time to time, but if you allow your poor posture to continue, it can have real consequences to your health. Livestrong explains slouching can lead to sore muscles in your back, as keeping your back in a rounded position doesn’t offer support to your spine.
You can also unknowingly cause blood vessel or nerve constriction. When you slouch, the pressure around the spine can potentially cut off the blood supply to the cells of the muscles, which can increase your chance of blood clots. Slouching can also cause your spine to curve, which can put pressure on the surrounding nerves and cause a pinched nerve. Do yourself a favor and sit up straight.
Make these 5 corrections and you’ll immediately improve your health.