Silhouette of young woman practicing yoga, lotus position, and meditating on the beach

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We all know that one person who magically never gets sick during flu season, even though they enjoy their share of unhealthy habits, and lead the same sedentary life as the rest of us mere mortals. Then again, there are so many people who make wise dietary choices, stay active, and still manage to catch every cold with the first sign of fall.

Can we dub the former a healthy group of individuals despite their unhealthy lifestyle? But can we do the same for the latter even though they technically do it all by the book?

The idea of health is much more complex than we initially assume, but if you truly wish to do your best to make healthy choices and safeguard your wellbeing, it all begins with a few essential habits.

Find your stress relief

Group of young sporty attractive people practicing yoga lesson with instructor, standing together in Virabhadrasana 1 exercise, Warrior one pose, working out, indoor full length, studio background

Since we have long abandoned the Stone Age, we no longer deal only with the issue of pure survival, but of living life to the fullest. This also changes our idea of health, as a physically able individual doesn’t necessarily represent the ideal of health if they have no healthy social relationships to enjoy, or interests and various hobbies in addition to their work.

It’s true that many of our daily responsibilities are in essence healthy, but can also be stressful, hence the need to find the right stress-minimizing strategies, since we cannot possibly erase it from our lives. Consider joining a yoga class, try meditating before bed and when you wake up, or start singing in a choir – you never know which of these activities will reduce your cortisol production and become your go-to lifesaver in flu season.

Go outside

alone young woman in black down jacket and yellow knitted hat with rucksack in the depth of the black forest during cold winter day in finland

Most of us spend eight to ten hours a day indoors, and stuck to computer screens, with little access to natural sunlight. Yet, a key ingredient to a healthy body and mind lies in surrounding ourselves with greenery and spending time in our natural habitat. If you can, escape to Mother Nature on a regular basis, and you will notice incredible improvements in your overall levels of happiness and health.

Time in the great outdoors protects your immune system by lowering your inflammation, blood pressure, and cortisol levels, and when you treat yourself to a regular outing to nature, your body enjoys the many perks of oxygen-rich air, no noise pollution, and plenty of sunlight.

Feed your immune system

Portrait of a man holding a crate full of fresh produce in a farmer's market

In an attempt to stay fit, many people monitor their macronutrient intake on a regular basis. Even though this is an excellent basis for crafting your perfect diet plan, in order to stay truly healthy, your body cannot operate with many micronutrient deficiencies. They make you much more vulnerable to illnesses, and some of the most common ones include magnesium and vitamin D deficiency.

If you take the previous advice and spend more time outside, then the later problem will be easily solved in time. However, magnesium is an essential mineral for the health of our bones, teeth and many metabolic processes, but it can be difficult to absorb through food. So, it would wise to consider magnesium supplements which can help you overcome this issue and stay healthy all year long.

Challenge your mind and body

Shot of young asian female student sitting at table and writing on notebook. Young female student studying in library.

We thrive on challenge, and spending long hours doing nothing productive can feel restorative from time to time, but it’s not a healthy permanent state of being. Whether it’s leaning a new language, mastering a new sewing method, or learning to cook a new recipe, learning keeps your brain in top shape, happy, and content.

The same goes for regular physical activity. When you allow your body to push through its existing boundaries, you prevent premature bone and muscle degeneration, as well as various diseases that come with age and are a consequence of a sedentary life. So, keep your body mobile and strong with regular exercise, and your mind nimble, for the sake of a life of growth and balance.

Time to turn in

Photo of a woman sleeping

Finally, the aspect of our lives that often gets overlooked is proper rest, which is equally essential to our wellbeing as everything previously listed. It’s during sleep that our body will use the nutrients we have consumed during the day, repair muscles from the damage of exercise, and give enough time for your brain to reboot.

Without sleep, all of our other efforts would simply be redundant. Sleep is our mood, energy, and health regulator, so do make sure to create a schedule of sleep that fits your own inner clock, and you will start seeing the benefits of all other healthy choices you make every day.

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