On The Table

A collection of knowledge-based articles to inspire overall wellness.

Break These 7 Habits That are Making You Sick

There are habits – good and bad – that we make in a short period of time, possibly in as little as three weeks! Learn how to keep the good habits while breaking the bad ones, which may be leading to you getting sick and gaining weight.

Break These 7 Habits That are Making You Sick

Habits are acquired behaviors and research suggests they take about 21 days to establish. Like poor health choices, there are poor habits that distress the body. Conquer these 7 habits making you sick and leading to weight gain with tips to stay healthy.

7 Habits That Make You Sick

1. Staying Sedentary

Those who stay sedentary are more at risk of high cholesterol and blood pressure. Skipping the gym and being inactive may not only lead to weight gain, but feelings of unhappiness. The body releases endorphins during exercise and contributes to positive and euphoric feelings.

2. Consistently Falling Into Fad Diet Traps

The latest diet sound too good to be true? Unfortunately, it more than likely is. Fad diets are oftentimes drastic and eliminate food groups. For example, going "gluten-free" excludes a wide variety of foods. Bouncing back and forth between such diets can negate nutrients the body needs and uses for optimal health.

3. Grazing the Kitchen

Snacking through the kitchen cabinets and refrigerator typically occurs unconsciously between meals. Before you realize it, chip bags and ice cream cartons are empty. Filling the diet with poor choices will more than likely contribute to weight gain.

4. Late Night Snacking

Like grazing the kitchen, a late night snack while watching the newest TV series can disruptive to health goals. Eating while watching TV or studying is typically a mindless act and results to overeating. Additionally, late night eaters are more likely to gain weight compared to those who do not eat at least two hours prior to bedtime.

5. Not Getting a Good Night's Rest

Poor sleep quality and not enough of it has been shown to lead to poorer nutritional choices. Research has proven that sleep-deprived individuals are more likely to overeat and binge. Furthermore, the chosen foods lack nutrients and often filled with sugar and fat.

6. Stressing Out

Life's responsibilities can ultimately contribute to stress and anxiety. When the body undergoes stress, inflammatory markers and hormones are released. Their presence can fight against weight loss and trigger unhealthy food cravings and sensations.

7. Remaining Indoors

Obtaining vitamin D goes beyond food sources. Getting outdoors and into the sunlight provides vitamin D. Deficiency of the "sunlight" vitamin has been shown to lead to an increased risk of heart disease, cancer, and cognitive impairment.

Tips to Stay Healthy

Eat the Rainbow

Well, not a bag of Skittles or a bowl of Fruit Loops. Get cozy with the produce aisles or local farmers' markets – obtaining vitamin D from sunlight while exploring a market is an added bonus! Fresh fruits and vegetables are loaded with nutrients the body needs for optimal functioning. The rich antioxidants can help defend the body against illness, too. Have sliced veggies and fruits in the fridge as a healthy, convenient snack. The convenience can help reduce the urge to grab for a less-nutritious bag of chips.

Get Active

Getting into shape not only boosts confidence, but releases endorphins like previously mentioned. If working at a desk job, take the time to stand up and stretch, walk during lunch periods, or take a long route to the bathroom. Simple movements are certainly better than none and can elevate an improved mood.

Combat Stress

To minimize the amplified feelings stress carries along, practice stress-relieving techniques. Meditate, practice yoga, take a hot bath, go on a walk, or listen to your favorite songs. Consistently embracing and partaking in activities that promote happiness can also boost mood and reduce damaging inflammatory responses.

Catch Zzzz's

The average adult should be obtaining seven to nine hours of quality sleep each night. To achieve quality sleep, stray away from caffeine in the afternoon and naps if possible. Limiting fluids before bedtime can reduce the opportunity of walking to the bathroom in the middle of the night. Turn off the television, phone, and other electronics an hour before bedtime as well for improved shut-eye.