A wise woman (otherwise known as my fifth-born child who has a Bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science, as well as psychology) said something recently that stuck with me. We were discussing physical fitness and the idea of people trying to get back into shape after being out of shape for a time. She said that it is more “doable” than people realize and that it’s all about time and consistency. I’ve been thinking about that, ever since. I understand the context in which she made the comment was directly related to exercise and fitness. However, I think it applies to many other aspects of life, as well. In fact, I think it’s especially relevant to kicking unhealthy habits.
It just takes time and consistency to accomplish our goals. Sometimes, small changes have big effects. There are four unhealthy habits that many people have nowadays. Doing less of these and more of the alternatives I’m about to share with you can lead to a healthier YOU.
Drinking soda and sugary beverages is 1 of the 4 unhealthy habits
I know I’ve said it before on The Hot Mess Press, such as in this post from our archives. Soda and sugary drinks are SO BAD for you. It’s literally like drinking a bottle of toxicity. It’s also one of the most common unhealthy habits that are rampant in our society today. I know people who drink several 20 oz. sodas per day. Do the math. With as much as 77 grams of sugar PER bottle, that’s a ton of toxicity! Let’s say three sodas just as an example. Every four grams equals one teaspoon. In one 20 oz. bottle, there are approximately 19 teaspoons of sugar. In three bottles of the same size, there would be approximately 57 teaspoons of sugar! That is roughly one whole cup, plus about another nine teaspoons of sugar, in one day!
It’s highly likely that the sodas aren’t the only source of processed sugar the average person with these unhealthy habits is consuming. So, just with the sodas alone, people who drink this much soda or other sugary drinks may be ingesting more than one cup of processed sugar per day. Besides that, there are chemicals in soda that are terribly unhealthy, as well. Thinking back to what my daughter said about time and consistency, it would be worth it to have less soda and sugary drinks and more water, instead. If you want sweetness or fruitiness, squeeze some fresh oranges or lemons or limes into your glass. This one step in the right direction will greatly improve your health.
Stop eating sugar too — it ranks high on the list of unhealthy habits
Most processed foods have high fructose corn syrup in them. They might as well rename that ingredient, “poison.” It wreaks havoc on human health. Anyone who wants to get healthier will want to eat less junk food and more whole fruits and vegetables. Try to think of food as medicine, because it really is a remedy for most things that ail us. It’s the perfect time of year for making this change because gardening season is about to start. You can grow your own fresh veggies!
Let’s have less anger and frustration and more deep breathing
My sister is always doing such interesting things. She recently attended a seminar on breathing. (She is a licensed yoga instructor.) She learned some very amazing things about deep and calm breathing, and how it improves our state of mind and physical health. On the contrary, anger and frustration fuel disease, literally. Harboring negative stress and anger can weaken the immune system, which places people at risk for disease, including cancer. Try to do some research to learn how to breathe properly at rest and also how to use breathing exercises to improve your health. More deep breathing, less anger and frustration.
Less sitting around and more whole body movement, instead
Being sedentary is extremely damaging to your health. God created our bodies for movement. The human body is an intricate and complex network of systems. Movement keeps them functioning properly. Consequently, not moving enough (I.e. being sedentary) impedes the body’s ability to function in a healthy manner. You don’t have to turn into a gym rat overnight or anything. Just get up and move around. Take a walk. Dance. Do some basic exercises. Go for a light jog. Stretch. Bend. Climb or jump. Every day, make sure you are taking time and being consistent to move your whole body (and get your heart rate up a little bit).
Remember these two words: time and consistency.
Some of the unhealthy habits listed here may be difficult to break, especially those involving sugar because it’s highly addictive. But, if you’re determined and willing to put in time and be consistent, you will succeed! And, you will be healthier, stronger and, probably, happier, too!