Why You Should Focus on Optimal Health Instead of The Way You Look
Most people think about health in terms of the way you look or illness, and not optimal health. Whether or not you are overweight or too thin, or you have decent muscle tone, most people only change their diets when they either want to lose weight, gain muscle, or gain weight, or if they have been diagnosed with an illness or condition that forces them to change their diets. A way better thing to focus on is optimal health.
If you think about it, your main goal should be to get your body in its healthiest possible state, so that you know you will feel your best. You will be able to do everything that you want to do, and then if you do want to change something about the way you look, it will be much easier if you started to eat healthier for optimal health. If you are overweight, you will lose weight if you do become healthier, and it will be easier to gain weight if you want, so therefore, you can focus on optimal health as your primary goal.
Everything else health-related will build on top of that, so you do not have to give up the idea of losing weight or looking better. That will come, but it is much better for your mental health to focus on health and not the way you look, because that tends to be where people start to feel depressed when it comes to diet and health.
If you focus on optimal health, you will also prevent or lower your chance of getting certain illnesses or dying early. You will improve longevity. You can live longer, and have more time to do the things on your bucket list. You will have more time to spend with your friends and family.
Focusing on optimal health will help you to improve your brain health, because that is part of it. You can improve your mental health, the way you feel physically, your energy levels, what you can do physically, and your quality of life.
Maybe you have already been diagnosed with an illness or a condition, or you are overweight and you have been frustrated with your health for years. Take it slowly. The main goal from now on is to just become as healthy as possible, and take it day by day. Just make choices that get you closer to being the healthiest you, and say no to things that will get you further away from your health goals.
That is a much better way to approach health. When aiming for optimal health, you get so much more out of it. You get to celebrate a lot of other victories other than just weight loss with optimal health. You can also focus on what you can do physically like how many push-ups you can do, how many squats you can do, the weight you can lift, etc. There are a lot of possible victories when focusing on your health in general.
If you are interested in pursuing optimal health and making that your primary goal from now on, here are a few tips that you can start off with. Obviously, there are a lot of aspects involved when it comes to you optimizing your health, but if you focus on these five things, then you will start your journey towards self-optimization.
Cut Out Processed Food from Your Diet and Lower Your Sugar Intake
If you focus on optimal health, you want to focus on eating whole foods, which means eating food in their natural form and staying away from processed food. And while a lot of experts disagree on what the best diet is, we believe that there is no best diet, but most of us can agree that processed food and eating too much sugar is not healthy, so if you make that the first step towards improving your health, then the rest you can figure out for yourself.
With the rest of your diet, you have to see which foods make you feel good and which foods your body responds negatively towards. You might have a friend who can eat a hamburger and not get a really high glucose spike, but if you eat it, your glucose levels go through the roof. It really is about finding what works best for you.
2. Get Enough Sleep and Improve the Quality of Your Sleep
You will not achieve optimal health if you do not get enough sleep, and if the quality of your sleep is not as it should be, your health will suffer. Aim to get seven to nine hours of sleep per night, and do things to improve the quality of your sleep, such as reducing blue light exposure before bed, making sure that the temperature of your room is cooler before bedtime, avoiding caffeine a few hours before bed, getting some sunlight throughout the day, and also getting some exercise.
3. Do Some Exercise
Exercise, but make it something that you enjoy. You will not stick to an exercise programme that you hate, or you might, but then you are ensuring a lot more suffering than necessary. There are a lot of different workouts that you can do, and if you are new to exercise, we suggest that you experiment with different classes and different types of workouts, and make a list of the ones that you do enjoy, so that you always have a variety to choose from.
If, one day, you do not feel like doing weight training, you can go for a hike instead. If you do not feel like doing cardio, you can do a yoga class. This makes it a lot more fun, and doing a variety of workouts will benefit your body, as it will train your body to do a lot of different things, which is great for mobility and longevity. We also suggest stretching a lot, as it helps with flexibility, and flexibility is one of the key factors in longevity.
4. Reduce Stress for Optimal Health
If you are stressed or anxious, your cortisol levels become elevated. Cortisol is the main stress hormone, which can speed up ageing, lead to adrenal fatigue, cause fat gain, lower cognitive function, and even trigger the body to produce more insulin. Try things like breathing exercises, meditation, walking, a floatation tank, drinking tea, baking, etc.
5. Remind Yourself That Optimal Health Takes Time
You will have to focus on things day by day in order to achieve it. If you focus on becoming your optimal self in terms of health, it can be overwhelming, but if you just focus on taking things one day at a time, one decision at a time, and with each decision ask yourself if this decision will get you closer to or further away from becoming your healthiest self, then that becomes a lot less overwhelming and a lot more doable than just constantly focusing on this giant goal of optimizing your health. The only way to get there is to take it one step at a time. Changing your mindset could help you a lot in a journey towards optimal health and self-optimization.