8 Ways to Take Better Care of Your Health

In today's fast-paced world, most of us are too busy trying to handle our work duties, financial obligations, and personal responsibilities that we tend to ignore our own wellbeing. However, taking care of your physical and mental health will enable you to better keep up with your busy schedule and your stressful daily routine. To help you kickstart your self-care journey, here are 8 surefire ways to improve your health.

1- Exercise Regularly

Between strengthening your muscles, boosting your mood, alleviating your stress, reducing your risk for various diseases, and toning your body, few things are as good for your overall wellbeing as regular exercise. While it can be hard to find the time, it's important to fit in at least 30 minutes of physical activity in your day. You don't necessarily have to hit the gym or use special equipment; instead, you can go on a deep cleaning spree, take your dog for a walk, sign up for a dance class, take up yoga, etc.

2- Eat a Healthy Diet

The food we consume can either keep us healthy or contribute to obesity and various chronic diseases. To maintain a healthy diet, focus on fresh fruits, green vegetables, lean proteins, healthy fats, and whole grains, and keep red meat to a minimum. Also, it's important to reduce your salt and sugar intake, cut back on saturated and trans fats and avoid processed and junk foods.

3- Drink Plenty of Water

Dehydration can affect our skin, energy levels, concentration, and mood— not to mention the adverse effects it can have on our bodily functions. The amount of water you need depends on various factors, including your weight and level of physical activity. As a general rule, though, you should drink a cup of water every 60-90 minutes, and load up on food with high water content, such as cucumbers, broccoli, and apples. Also, try to cut back on alcohol, soda, and other sugary drinks.

4- Manage the Pain Naturally

No one can lead a happy and healthy life when they're in constant pain. Traditional massage acts as a natural pain reliever that can reduce built-up muscle tension, ease cramps, relieve aching joints and ligaments, and promote overall relaxation. If you don't have the time to frequent a spa, consider investing in a transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) unit. As demonstrated on this URL, by delivering small electrical impulses to the targeted areas, a TENS unit can intercept the pain signals transmitted from the nervous system to the brain. As a result, this can help alleviate chronic pains that are interfering with your quality of life.

5- Get Enough Sleep

The quality and quantity of sleep you get can have a huge effect on your physical and mental health. If you have trouble falling or staying asleep for at least 7-8 hours every night, start by adjusting your nightly routine. Try to avoid digital screens at least 2 hours before bedtime, and stay away from caffeine and sugar at night. You should also find a way to relax and clear your mind so you can fall asleep faster; perhaps you should consider listening to white noise or meditating before going to bed.

6- Find Healthy Ways to Destress

No matter how busy or hectic your life is, you need to employ healthy techniques to manage your stress, otherwise, both your mind and body will suffer. You can go on a fishing trip on the weekend, treat yourself to a candlelit bath, put your feet up and unwind with a glass of wine, or book a spa day. It doesn't matter what you do as long as you take some time for yourself to destress, clear your mind, and simply relax.

7- Get Regular Checkups

The average adult should visit their doctor once a year for an annual checkup. Depending on your gender, health condition, age, and family history, there are a couple of screening tests that you should do periodically to detect certain diseases early on, such as breast cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure, and prostate cancer. Ask your health care provider about which tests you should have and when.

8- Don't Ignore Your Oral Health

Ignoring your oral hygiene can lead to more than rotten teeth and bad breath; studies have linked poor dental health to heart disease and a lower life expectancy. Furthermore, if your gums are inflamed or infected, that infection can find its way to your bloodstream and reach other parts of your body, causing potentially serious consequences. So don't skimp on oral hygiene, and visit your dentist every 6 months for a cleaning.

Taking care of your physical and mental wellbeing is something that you should be doing on a daily basis, not just when you're sick or drained. Getting started with self-care can be challenging, but with the right mindset and enough determination, you'll be able to incorporate the above steps into your regular routine and lead a healthier, happier life.

3 min read

Help! My Friend Is a No Show

Email armchairpsychologist@swaaymedia.com to get the advice you need!

Help! My Friend Is a No Show

Dear Armchair Psychologist,

I have a friend who doesn't reply to my messages about meeting for dinner, etc. Although, last week I ran into her at a local restaurant of mine, it has always been awkward to be friends with her. Should I continue our friendship or discontinue it? We've been friends for a total four years and nothing has changed. I don't feel as comfortable with her as my other close friends, and I don't think I'll ever be able to reach that comfort zone in pure friendship.


Dear Sadsies,

I am sorry to hear you've been neglected by your friend. You may already have the answer to your question, since you're evaluating the non-existing bond between yourself and your friend. However, I'll gladly affirm to you that a friendship that isn't reciprocated is not a good friendship.

I have had a similar situation with a friend whom I'd grown up with but who was also consistently a very negative person, a true Debby Downer. One day, I just had enough of her criticism and vitriol. I stopped making excuses for her and dumped her. It was a great decision and I haven't looked back. With that in mind, it could be possible that something has changed in your friend's life, but it's insignificant if she isn't responding to you. It's time to dump her and spend your energy where it's appreciated. Don't dwell on this friend. History is not enough to create a lasting bond, it only means just that—you and your friend have history—so let her be history!

- The Armchair Psychologist

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