If you want to enhance the quality of your life, as well as extend it, then you need to live a healthy lifestyle. That includes eating right, exercising, and taking care of yourself. Unfortunately, many people eat unhealthy foods and don’t engage in enough physical activity. Furthermore, they often have unhealthy habits as well. In short, here are some healthy tips you should follow to live a better, healthier, and hopefully longer life. 

1. You Are What You Eat

It turns out that the old saying, “You are what you eat” is right. When you consume unhealthy foods, you are more likely to be in poor health. That’s because your body doesn’t get the important vitamins and nutrients that it needs to stay healthy and strong. Your immune system will be weaker, which will put you at greater risk of getting illnesses. Furthermore, if you struggle with obesity, you will be at a higher risk for potentially deadly conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and strokes. Therefore, if you are serious about improving your overall health and well-being, then you must get serious about eating a healthier diet.

 2. Avoiding These Two Unhealthy Food Groups

Speaking of a healthier diet, these are two food groups that you should avoid, or at least cut back on:  

• Foods high in sugar content 

• Processed foods 

Processed foods are anything that was manufactured with some type of chemical processing. Unfortunately, many of these chemicals are bad for you because they contain things like artificial substances, which often have toxins in them. For example, preservatives are added to most packaged foods found in a grocery store to give them a longer shelf life, and processed foods often contain artificial flavorings to give them a certain taste. Some of these chemicals alter your body’s natural ability to tell your brain that your stomach is full. Hence, you tend to eat a lot more of them – consuming too many calories. 

Processed foods put you at higher risk of becoming obese, as well as developing heart disease. 

Therefore, you need to reduce (or even eliminate) your consumption of them. Give organic foods a try! Of course, you likely know that eating too much sugar can be bad for you. Each time you eat something with high sugar content, it messes with your blood sugar. Not only does sugar raise your risk level for diabetes, but it can also make you get tired more quickly after you come off of a “sugar high.” 

3. Remembering Mom’s Advice About Eating Your Fruits and Vegetables

 Fruits and vegetables contain many of the vital nutrients that your body needs not just to stay healthy, but to survive. In fact, there’s no other food group that contains such a high concentration of vitamins and minerals. Most people don’t eat enough fruit and vegetables. Therefore, they are missing out on these important vitamins and minerals. If you don’t eat enough of them, start adding more fruits and vegetables to your diet. You could even replace unhealthy snacks with them as well. For example, when you crave something sweet, eat a piece of fruit instead of something processed. Try eating more salads and including vegetables as toppings on sandwiches. 

4. Adding These Nutritious Foods to Your Diet

If you want to live longer, then you need to stack the deck in your favor. You can do so by including these nutritious foods in your diet:

• Blueberries are a great source of antioxidants. 

• Salmon is low in fat, high in protein, and contains lots of omega-3. 

• Shellfish is a good source of vitamin B12. 

• Garlic has lots of vitamins B1, B6, and C. 

• Eating whole grains can lower your cholesterol and risk of heart disease. 

• Avocados contain lots of vitamin B6. 

• Raspberries are loaded with antioxidants and vitamin C.  

• Beets promote good heart and brain health. 

• Spinach is high in vitamins A and K.  

Furthermore, you should limit how much red meat you consume. Replace unhealthy, fattening cooking oils with plant-based oils when you cook. Replace sugary drinks with water, or unsweetened tea, or coffee. 

5. Maintaining Healthy Habits

While a good, nutritious diet can go a long way in keeping you healthier and live longer, it’s not enough. Your body needs regular exercise – especially your heart. You need to engage in some form of physical activity each day – even if it’s just power walking. Make sure you are getting enough sleep. The average adult needs between seven to eight hours of sleep a night. If you smoke or use any other tobacco products, quit. If you engage in excessive drinking, reduce how much you drink or try to give up alcohol altogether. Stress can be a killer too. You need to live a lifestyle that’s conducive to good health and a longer life. 

In short, while you can’t control things like genetics, you can control many other aspects that play a huge factor in the health and longevity of your life. For example, eating a healthy diet and exercising regularly means that you are more likely to have better overall health. Cutting out bad habits – like smoking or heavy drinking – adds more years to your life as well. Don’t let yourself get consumed by stressful situations which can ruin your health.