We can all use a little extra health on our side these days. The good news? Living a healthier life doesn’t have to be daunting! By switching up a few simple daily habits, you’ll kick-start your immune system and strengthen those vital organs, just in time for cold season. And the best part? No need to force feed yourself a bland plate of raw veggies - you can have your cake and eat it too.
Ready to hack your way into a healthier life?
Swap out butter for olive oil
Pretty much anywhere you use butter, you can swap for olive oil. Think baked goods, sauces, proteins…the list goes on. But why swap? You already probably know that olive oil is healthier than butter, but did you know this simple swap can actually increase your lifespan? A recent study by the American Heart Association showed that replacing your unhealthy fats with extra virgin olive oil reduces your risk of heart disease, and makes for an overall healthier heart and body.
Using olive oil cuts down on "bad" cholesterol and saturated fat in your baking. It's considered a "good" fat, unlike butter. It also adds extra antioxidants (natural chemicals that help protect our cells) and vitamin E to your baked goods, giving your desserts a heart-healthy boost. The vitamin E may even help keep your muffins and breads fresher, longer (and add a bit of extra moisture, too).
Cook your meals to warm your digestion
Nurture your body and keep warm in the fall by eating cooked meals. Ice, cold drinks and cold or raw food will make you feel cold from the inside out, effectively shutting down digestive function the moment you need it most. Avoiding cold and raw food (especially when in cold weather!) will help you feel relaxed and hearty. It will also improve your digestion, side stepping issues of gas, bloating, and discomfort. This fall, cook your meals. Have hot cereal for breakfast, a stir-fry with rice for lunch and soup for dinner. You will feel cozy, comfortable, and warm from the heat from all the cooked foods at your core.
Take a quick stroll
Get those walking shoes on! Walking just 20-minutes a day lowers your risk of heart disease and diabetes, while improving your memory and mood. With more people spending all day cooped up at home, it’s more important than ever to find excuses to get out, walk and smell the roses while you’re at it. Meet a friend for a walk around the neighborhood, take an evening stroll to disconnect from the day, or ditch the car keys and walk instead of driving. Or...get a dog!
Squeeze lemon in your water
With cold season amongst, we need all the vitamin C we can get. Squeezing lemon in your water boosts your immune system, thanks to high amounts of vitamin C, potassium, gut-healing properties and more. Some added bonuses? It aids digestion, keeps the bloat away, and makes your skin glow! Not to mention it tastes really good. Adios, boring ol’ water.
Spice up your diet with ginger
There’s a reason this little power plant has been used as medicine for centuries. It might be small, but it’s loaded with active ingredients that help fight off infections. Adding ginger into your diet has proven to improve lung health. Try boiling some water to make a fresh ginger tea, or add in freshly chopped ginger to any dish for a zesty kick. Ginger awakens tastes buds, gets juices flowing, and purifies the mouth.