Have you been feeling stressed, overwhelmed, fatigued? Are you physically or mentally drained?  It's time to change your day-to-day lifestyle habits! Most of your daily health concerns can be combated with good nutrition and regular exercise. Therefore, the majority of your health is in your hands. The foods we eat, the exercise we don't do, the products we use, all influence our wellness.

These five daily health tips cover aspects of sleep, nutrition, stress, positive thinking, and fitness in order to help you attain your highest level of overall well-being. Health is a balanced concoction of several elements including: physical stamina, smart eating habits, psychological stability, positive social interactions, environmental influences, and even spirituality.

Basically, our physical and mental condition is everything! Only you have the power to keep yourself at an optimal level of health. Read these five simple tips over and you'll be that much further on your journey to wellness. Here's to a happy, long life!

1. Get 7+ hours of sleep

daily functioning
Daily Functioning, itscarmen

If you're one of those people who says: "I work totally fine with like 5 hours of sleep." You're very wrong. As an adult, you need 7-9 hours hours of sleep each night, and people who don't get enough zzz's don't perform as well on mental tasks. It's all too easy to get caught up in the moment: staying up until 4 a.m to cram for that tricky midterm, going to bed at 3 a.m. because you went out with friends, using StumbleUpon until you look at the time and it reads: 2:39 a.m. Yeah, it happens to the best of us, but this is a habit we must break! Sleep is imperative for our daily functioning. If you're sleep deprived, you're more at risk to develop diabetes, heart problems, weight gain, depression or substance abuse. Maybe kids shouldn't be the only ones with a bedtime. Determine what time you have to get up (for school, work, church, social activity, etc.) and count 7-9 hours backward so you can establish when to hit the hay.

2. Eat more earthy foods

earthy foods
Earthy Foods, itscarmen

By earthy foods, I mean food from the earth. The closer it comes from a tree, the better. Well, it doesn't necessarily need to be a tree; it could be from a bush, the ground, a flower, you get the drift. Fruits and vegetables decrease your chances of developing high blood pressure, heart disease, and cancer, while increasing your gastrointestinal health and vision. Wow, sounds like a miracle food! Choose natural foods rather than boxed or microwavable goods. Chemicals belong in a lab, not in a body. You are what you eat. Do you want to be monosodium glutamate or powdered beef? I'd rather be a pineapple or maybe a mango.  Next time you go to the grocery store, commit to buying two more types of fruits or veggies.  Experiment with citrus: clementine, orange, tangerine. Buy some berries: blackberry, blueberry, raspberry. Go green: spinach, broccoli, cucumber. You're doing this for yourself, for your health, for your future.

3. Stress less

The Basic Purpose, itscarmen

The first thing you need to know about stress is that it's all a matter of how you perceive a certain situation. Stress can be both good and bad for you. In moderation, this element of pressure can be positive in terms of building character and helping to cope with future experiences. We've all had those crazy, traumatic, stressful events in our life that seemed unbearable at the time, but in the end, we ended up gaining a valuable lesson from. However, stress in excess and over a long period of time is very unhealthy. Problems associated with stress include: headaches, migraines, panic attacks, ulcers, muscle tension, lower back pain. Or worse, stress may increase your risk of heart disease, or high blood pressure. In times of stress remember to: stop, drop, and roll.
  • Stop fretting and start changing your attitude. 
  • Drop everything you're doing and take a moment to step back and breathe.  
  • Roll with the punches and learn from the every day trials and tribulations of life.

4. Think positive

Never Give Up!, itscarmen

Positive thinking and stress are correlated. A positive attitude can help relieve stress, increase your lifespan, and better your physical and mental health. Time and time again, I've learned it helps to have an optimistic attitude rather than a negative one. Your outlook doesn't particularly change the outcome of a situation, but it does improve your quality of life. Someone who sees the good in people, places, things, ideas, can live a more colorful and generally happier life. Negative self-talk may result in ruined confidence or poor performance. So really, there are no benefits to thinking negatively, while positive thinking has the power to boost your confidence, lessen your stressin', and help your health. Start putting out those good thoughts!

5. Be active for 30-60 minutes

Moment of Movement, itscarmen

In this world of technology, traffic, and advertisements, it's hard to find the time and motivation to exercise. But you need to do it! Get your body moving in any way, shape, or form. At least 30 minutes of activity each day, lowers your risk of blood pressure and diabetes, maintains your weight, and improves your cholesterol, stamina, and energy. You don't strictly have to hit the gym seven days a week in order to satisfy your daily exercise requirement. Try something new and spice up your fitness regime.  Go on a walk through the park with your dog. Take an instructed fitness class such as cycling, yoga, or Zumba. Go to the beach, run in the sand, wade through the water, boogie board. Just get up and move! Exert energy! Go do something!

What did you think? What do you need to work on? Leave a comment below! :]