There is so much that goes into being a healthy person that it can be hard to always stay on track of everything. Making time for friends, exercise, eating right, and getting enough sleep is a task for a superwoman. For the rest of us, making small, incremental changes in our daily routines towards a healthier lifestyle can make us into the best versions of ourselves.
Whether you begin by embracing a few at a time or vowing to implement all of them right now, here are 10 healthy habits every woman should follow:
1. Don’t Make Exercise a Huge Commitment
When the idea of working out becomes a daunting task rather than an empowering one, it’s not surprising for exercise to take a backseat. Sure, for a few days you’ll be on that exercise kick, and you’ll feel really good about it. However, miss a day or go too hard and you’ll throw off your routine altogether.
Exercising is important, but luckily it doesn’t have to be a huge commitment in your daily routine. Dedicate just 30 to 40 minutes per day to doing something that keeps you active. This can be anything from practicing yoga, going for a brisk walk, or riding your bike. If you don’t feel you have enough time for a workout, try adding little spurts of activity throughout your day. Take the stairs instead of the elevator or go for a walk on your lunch break; there are endless ways you can stay active during the workday that won’t take up much time.
2. Use a Retinol If You’re Starting to Get Wrinkles
Developing fine lines and wrinkles as you get older is inevitable. As you age, collagen production tends to slow down causing your skin to sag and crease. However, some aspects of aging can be prevented or repaired if you’re proactive. Premature aging often occurs due to excess sun exposure or from unhealthy lifestyle habits, such as smoking or bad skin-care practices.
If you’re not already aware of this, using an anti-aging retinol product in your skin-care routine will boost the firmness and elasticity of your skin. It’s great for the skin because it stimulates collagen production, which is crucial for restoring and repairing damaged skin cells. It will take some time before you begin seeing results, but it’ll be worth it once you do.
3. Go Meatless Once a Week
Not only does cutting out meat from your diet help our planet (it’ll save 2,000 gallons of water to be exact), but it also will improve your overall health. Dedicating even one day a week to going meatless can help prevent heart disease, cut out potentially dangerous processed meats, and boost the level of nutrients and fiber in your diet.
If meat is a staple item in your daily recipes, making this switch will create a huge difference for your well-being. Try nutritional meatless recipes once a week (or more if you’re feeling spontaneous) and you’ll notice a huge difference in the state of your health.
4. Don’t Snack If You’re Not Hungry
Snacking when you’re bored can easily lead to unwanted weight gain. When you snack out of boredom, you’re typically not providing your body with any nutritional value. Additionally, mindless eating can quickly turn into daily overeating.
Most of the time, when you feel like snacking, it’s actually because your body is trying to tell you it’s thirsty, not hungry. Although it’s perfectly okay to snack throughout the day to keep your energy up and your stomach full, it’s important to know the difference between needing a snack and maybe just needing a glass of water. Next time you’re feeling the urge to mindlessly snack when you’re not actually hungry, fill up a water bottle instead and watch your cravings subside.
5. Use SPF Daily
As mentioned earlier, UV damage is a huge contributing factor for premature aging. Additionally, too much sun exposure can cause various health concerns and conditions, such as skin hyperpigmentation and hair thinning.
Utilize skin-care and beauty products that contain SPF so that it’s a one-and-done step in your routine. Products like moisturizers, foundations, lip balms, facial mists, and powders specifically formulated with SPF are all available, making it easy for you to make the switch and capsule your youth.
6. See Your Gynecologist Annually
Every woman should see her gynecologist at least once a year. This ensures you’re up to date on regular screenings, like pap smears and breast exams. It also will give you some face-to-face time with your doctor to discuss any concerns or questions you have regarding your sexual health or fertility.
Prioritize your annual gynecologist appointment by always scheduling it far in advance. Mark it on your calendar, and arrange your schedule ahead of time so that you never miss an appointment. It’s also crucial to listen to your body if there are any changes or troubles that arise and to schedule an additional appointment if necessary.
7. Read Labels
In order to prioritize your health, it’s essential to take ownership of what you put in and on your body. With an influx of beauty products on the market, it’s important to be conscious of the ingredients you’re using. A few toxic beauty ingredients to avoid include parabens, phthalates, and artificial fragrances.
Paying attention to labels also applies to cleaning products you use around the house, such as laundry detergent or disinfecting wipes. Typically, you’ll also want to avoid aerosol sprays, ammonia, diethanolamine, and air fresheners. You can ensure you avoid using toxic ingredients altogether by making DIY household cleaners that are just as effective.
8. Do Something Fun
Throughout all of life’s chaos, don’t forget to take moments for yourself to do what makes you happy. Always make time for fun, even if it’s in small doses. Doing things that excite you will keep your mind stimulated, boost your energy, and improve your mental health. So go ahead, do something fun today!