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  • Dr. Nancy

7 Free Ways to Improve Your Health on a Daily Basis

Adding new healthy habits can feel daunting. Being inundated with the latest eating plans, the newest organic superfood drink, trendy gym classes -- it can all be a lot. On top of being overwhelming in general, these things can add up in price. A healthy lifestyle doesn't have to be that way, and today I'm including seven ways that you can improve your health for no cost at all.

Spend time in nature.

1. Be Physically Active

You don't need a gym membership or personal trainer to move your body. There are loads of free resources on the internet for workouts that you can do at home with no equipment at all.

You can also amp up your health rewards and go for a walk or run outside. And don’t underestimate the value of body weight exercises like planks, push-ups, squats and lunges. Yoga can also help you achieve a lean and flexible physique.

If you wish, you can invest in minimal equipment, such as resistance bands or a jump rope, to increase the intensity of your at- home workouts without breaking the bank.

2. Intermittent Fasting

Lately, many scientific studies have been demonstrating that intermittent fasting can give you tremendous health benefits. You can choose a split that works best for you and your schedule, but the most common breakdown is an 8-hour eating frame and a 16-hour fast.

This isn't just great for weight and fat loss; studies have shown that it can improve cell regeneration and help prevent illness. Check with your medical professional to make sure fasting is right for you.

3. Take Cold Showers

Does this surprise you as much as it did me when I first heard this?

Cold water on your body, especially your face actually stimulates the vagus nerve, activating the parasympathetic nervous system. This can help to improve your resilience and your heart rate variability.

Now for those of you who have avoided a polar plunge for your entire life, calm down. This is much easier to tolerate than you think.

You can activate your vagus nerve in the shower, every morning. At the end of your shower, turn the water to cold. Breathe in and out through your nose, don’t hold your breath. Relax and breathe under the cold streaming water for 30-60 seconds. Make sure to get your face in there too for maximum effect.

4. Meditate

Meditating is good for both the body and mind. Take time to meditate each day, and you will notice a dramatic decrease in your stress levels, which not only makes you feel happier and more relaxed but also improves your physical health.

When we are stressed out, our bodies release too much cortisol— our stress hormone— which can increase inflammation, cause insulin resistance and have negative ripple effects on our physical health.

By de-stressing, you can take care of your mental and physical health.

Binaural beat technology helps to achieve the benefits of meditation by entraining the brain waves into a relaxed and alert state. Shifting you from a stressed, fight or flee state to a more relaxed and restful one.

5. Practice Your Breathing

Take some time each day to completely clear your mind and focus solely on your breathing. Practice taking slow, deep breaths instead of the short and shallow breathing that we often unconsciously do when we're feeling stressed. This can also be part of your meditation and yoga practice.

6. Drink Enough Water

Water is the healthiest thing you can drink —and it is free. Make sure you're drinking at least half of your body weight in ounces of water each day and make it a habit to drink a big glass first thing in the morning.

Drinking an ample amount of water each day is the simplest and most profound habit you can adopt. It is simple, but not necessarily easy.

Stick to it and you will notice increased focused, more resilience and even some weight loss.

7. Spend Time in Nature

Spending time in nature is fantastic for reducing stress and clearing our minds. The fresh air is good for waking you up if you feel groggy or unmotivated.

The aim is to slow down and become immersed in the natural environment and become untethered to your devices. Use all your senses to tune into the smells, textures and sights of the forest.

There is a growing body of evidence that spending time in nature can help boost immunity and mood. It can also help to reduce stress.

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