If you want to live a longer, healthier life, here are a few smart habits to follow. These come from our friend, Dr. Mehmet Oz:
#1: Stretch the moment you get out of bed. Stretching for just 10 minutes will loosen up your muscles and joints, improve circulation, reduce stress, and decrease your risk of a heart attack. Stretching also gives you a boost of energy to start your day.
Another live-longer tip: Show up early. According to Dr. Oz, being consistently late, even by 5 minutes, is highly stressful, and can cause high blood pressure, and chronic inflammation. But if you aim to arrive everywhere early, you won’t be rushing, or freaking out if the traffic’s bad. And when you’re on time, you won’t stress out the people waiting for you.
Also: Replace couch time with 30 minutes of activity, like doing the dishes, cleaning out your closet, or pacing while you’re on the phone. Studies show that steady exercise can reverse a lot of the negative symptoms of a sedentary lifestyle. It can also relax your blood vessels up to 26 percent, which lowers your risk of high blood pressure, stroke, and heart attack.
Another tip: Avoid mindless eating. When we eat more than we need, the excess nutrients are converted to fat, and Dr. Oz says that when we eat sugar, it rushes to our brain and pushes us to eat even more. We’re at the highest risk for mindless eating at 3 p.m. when our energy levels normally dip, so carry healthy snacks, like carrot sticks, so you can reach for those instead of chips or chocolate bars.
Finally: Don’t sweat the small stuff. Dr. Oz says we only have enough energy for a limited number of decisions each day, and we waste a lot of them by making too many decisions about small things, like, “What should I eat for breakfast?” So, make it easy, and have the same thing every day.