Getting healthy – along with better mental and physical wellness – need not be a burden or chore. All you need is a little discipline and some time set aside each day, or year, to form these easy health habits. With this being the month of Movember, where there is more attention on men’s health issues, there’s no better time to get a new routine going with these pointers:
For a lot of people, having some ‘me time’ is easier said than done. There are just too many distractions in a day and it’s never easy when your mind and thoughts are constantly unsettled. But making an effort to set aside 10 to 15 minutes a day to practise some mindfulness has been shown to reap many benefits.
Whether it’s meditation or just relaxing in a quiet corner to clear your thoughts with calm regulated breathing, having some ‘me time’ can help lower your blood pressure, promote better sleep and reduce stress levels.
If you dread the 10,000 steps a day routine, try the 10-minute walk a few times a day (up to three times) to help cut the risk of early death by 15%*. Research has shown that a short brisk walk can reduce cardiovascular disease and lower the risk of dementia and cancer as well.
Much like short running sprints, these brisk and intense 10-minute walks raise your heart activity higher than a longer, single walk. The walks also burn more calories than a long walk at moderate pace.
And it’s much easier to fit these short sessions into your normal everyday schedule – collecting the laundry, walking the dog or just a quick pop out to the supermarket for groceries. Just make sure you do at least three sessions a day.
Our lives during the pandemic are full of distractions along with the stress of multi-tasking while you’re working from home. The mind also tends to jump from one thought to another and this makes it hard to have the full focus and concentration needed to perform your tasks well. The solution is to have mini breaks after about 30 to 45 minutes of work. Chill out, shut your eyes, or even go for a short meditation session – any activity that allows you to clear your mind and relax. The benefits? You get mentally refreshed, have better focus and concentration which translates to better productivity and efficiency.
So there is a health reason for all the times our teachers and parents scolded us for not sitting straight at our table or desk. Slouching while sitting, or hunching may feel more relaxed but it actually causes muscle tension, back pain, joint aches and poor blood circulation. Especially while working from home, it’s all the more important that we remind ourselves to sit properly with straight backs. If you find yourself naturally slouching, then get up every 15 to 20 minutes to stretch your back by bending backwards.
This is not a daily health hack but it’s a must-do every year or so – routine medical checkups. If you’re below 50 and relatively healthy, you should be going for for a general medical checkup at least once every 2 to 3 years. If you’re over 50, make an appointment once a year. Or course if you have underlying chronic medical conditions, you should consult with your doctor to determine how often you should have your checkups.
Early detection of ailments and diseases like cancer gives you a much better chance of full recovery. It’s always better to prevent full-blown illnesses than to treat it at a late stage.
Other benefits of regular medical checkups include screening tests to identify potential problems, monitoring of existing health issues and getting advice on how to live a healthier lifestyle. In these times, even with full vaccination against Covid-19, its best to be in your healthiest state and have strong immunity. Regular medical check-ups will help you achieve that. So add this to your to-do list – these checkups will give you much needed peace of mind as well.
Planning a medical check-up? Here are a few of our healthcare partners that offer exclusive packages for SAFRA members:
What are you doing this month to take better care of your health? Share your thoughts with us at firstname.lastname@example.org!