Eating well, exercising and getting enough sleep are just the tip of the iceberg. There are a lot of factors that go into living a healthy lifestyle, and it’s easy to be overwhelmed by the amount of information available about health. Here are some signs and habits you might think are good for you, but in fact might be sabotaging your well-being.
You always eat after a workout
Depending on the workout, you may not need to eat and you could unintentionally be adding a lot of extra calories. Trainers sometimes tell you to eat right after a workout, but it’s most important to listen to your body about your hunger. Being mindful about when you’re hungry and when you’re full is the best way to ensure healthy eating patterns.
If you don’t have Celiac’s disease, you probably don’t need to be going gluten-free. You could be depriving your body of a lot of whole-grain fiber that is great for maintaining a healthy gut. Plus, many gluten-free products have the same amount of calories as their glutinous counterparts, don’t taste as good, and are more expensive. Save yourself the money and the bother and eat healthy whole grains.
You sleep too MUCH
For many people, getting enough sleep is hard, but getting too much sleep can be detrimental as well. Michael J. Breus, Ph.D of The Sleep Doctor says that oversleeping can lead to impaired brain function and increased vulnerability to depression and mental health issues. It can also lead to chronic inflammation and a higher risk of stroke and heart disease. Most scientists say that anywhere between six to nine hours of sleep a night is ideal, with many stating that around seven hours is the “sweet spot” for most adults.
You work out seven days a week
Exercise is an important part of a healthy lifestyle, but it’s important to give your body a day off to recover. Rest days are vital to allowing your muscles to repair, which is how you get stronger over time, says Crystal Reeves, a certified trainer and a co-owner of MadSweat. Constantly working out means that you’re impairing your body’s ability to gain strength. Taking a rest day doesn’t mean you can’t move around, just keep it light–go for a walk or take a restorative yoga class. Your body will thank you for it.
You avoid the sun
Of course it’s important to avoid sunburns and overexposure to the sun increases the risk of skin cancer and premature skin aging, but the sun plays a vital role in boosting vitamin D which is essential for human health. Vitamin D aids bone strength, decreases depression and encourages calcium absorption among other health benefits. Just 10 minutes of exposure will produce vitamin D production in the body, so go out and enjoy the sun for a little while.
You chew gum
It’s an old trick to chew a piece of gum when a food craving comes, but unfortunately chewing gum is bad for your teeth and bad for your digestion. When you chew a piece of gum, you’re telling your brain that food is coming. Your brain will then send a signal to your stomach to start secreting stomach acid. This excess stomach acid will sit in your gut, because there’s no food for it to digest which can lead to heartburn and bloating, according to Dr. Joseph Mercola of Mercola.com.