We all made New Years resolutions that none of us stuck to, lets just admit it now and accept that it happens every single year. The main reason we fail the challenges we set ourselves is because they are just huge (and sometimes outright unattainable) changes to make. If like many people you made a resolution regarding your health, you might find it easier to change your habits little by little by making healthy choices.
1Drink More Water
We’re being told this all the time but for good reason! Not only does it keep you hydrated but also it can prevent you getting headaches, aid digestion and keep you feeling more awake. If you’re not a massive fan of water you can add fruit to infuse your water with a bit of flavour. You can buy fruit infusing water bottles that make it easier when you’re on the go. Citrus fruits work best! Plus drinking lemon water first thing in the morning has massive health benefits for you!
2Drink Green Tea
If you’re one of those people who relies on coffee to get you through the day, consider this: Green tea contains less caffeine than coffee, however the amount of caffeine it contains is just the right amount to improve brain function and keep you alert without making you jittery. Green tea is also fab because it’s rich in antioxidants, B vitamins, can help to lower blood pressure and cholesterol, and only contains one calorie per cup (compare this to your usual daily drinks and you’ll want to swap them all). Not convinced? Green tea can also help to prevent bad breath and tooth decay!
3Cook with Coconut Oil
Olive, vegetable and sunflower oil are all great to cook with, however why use those when you could be cooking with oil from a superfood? Coconut oil will make your kitchen smell amazing everytime you fry food, and yep, it’s healthy for you too!
Not only that, it’s multi-functional. You can use coconut oil as a massage oil, to keep your hair shiny, a moisturiser for your dry skin, and due to its antioxidant properties it helps prevent infections.
4Swap Peanut Butter for Almond Butter
Ever look at the ingredients on a jar of your favourite peanut butter? You may notice quite a bit of sugar and salt are added to improve the taste, and we have no control over how much is added. Most almond butters contain no extra sugar or salt, and some even state no palm oil – hooray! If however you struggle to find a cheap alternative to your normal peanut butter, you can actually make your own almond butter with a food processor to keep costs down.
5Ditch Extra Sugar
We all know sugar is bad for us, and it’s in almost everything we eat and drink. Plus you know, it ruins our teeth, and we’d all rather avoid extra visits to the dentist right?
You can lower your sugar intake by thinking about what you add it to when preparing food and drinks – could you go without sugar in your tea or coffee? If you add it to your cereal try swapping it for fruit. Are there other things you’re adding it to without even realising? Sugar can be found in your favourite sauces whether it’s tomato or barbecue, and fizzy drinks are FULL of sugar so it’s worth considering swapping these for a fresh fruit juice or smoothie instead.
6Books Before Bed
If you’re often stuggling to fall alseep easily it could be because you’re not giving your mind chance to wind down. If you’re watching Netflix in bed this could be why. As you may already know laptops give off ‘blue light’ which can suppress the production of melatonin (basically a sleep hormone) in your body. So switching to reading a book instead could help you ease into sleep faster. Reading regularly is also said to improve memory!
7Regularly Changing Your Pillow Covers
There’s nothing better than climbing into bed with clean sheets right? How often you should change your sheets varies depending on who you ask, and lets be real… most people lie about how often they do it anyway. You may not have time to wash your whole bedset every week, however washing pillowcases is as easy as throwing them in with your normal load. By doing this once a week you’ll give your skin a break from all the ‘pollution’ that builds up on your pillows and this will help to prevent spots – yay!
8Get Meal Planning
Yes it’s time consuming, but just planning your lunches will save you so much time and money. It’s so easy to make a packed lunch to take to school/uni/work and means you won’t be spending ridiculous amounts on expensive sandwiches you could have made yourself. Also this way you won’t be tempted by all the unhealthy chocolates and crisps you see on your way to the till! (They do it on purpose and you know it works!)
9Walk or Cycle
Yeah this is a fairly obvious one – we get told all the time to try walking or cycling to school/work/uni, but this can actually make a difference. By doing a 30 minute walk you could burn about 84 calories at a slow pace, at a brisk pace you could be burning 106 calories – if you do this twice a day (including your walk home) that’s 212 potential extra calories you could be burning each day! That’s two Kitkats! You’re welcome. Also you know, carbon footprint and all that.
10Drink Less Alcohol
They call it a beer belly for a reason! Beer and most other alcoholic drinks are packed with calories meanwhile heavy drinking can of course lead to serious health problems such as heart attacks and liver damage. Throw it on the ground.