Improve Your Health In Under 30 Minutes
Get Out and Get Moving
”When stressed or depressed, it can feel almost impossible to find the motivation to get up and moving. Fatigue and decrease in motivation and energy can be a few of the many side effects of feeling stressed and depressed,” Danielle Forshee, PsyD, LCSW tells us. “One reason for feeling this way is that when we are depressed, our brains are likely not producing or releasing enough of the ‘neurotransmitter of happiness’ called serotonin. Countless studies have shown that exercise increases both serotonin production and release, and is the reason most feel better after they get out and moving.” David Sabgir, MD, FACC, adds that simply walking for about 20 minutes a day at a moderate pace can reduce anxiety and depression by an impressive 40 percent.
Try a HIIT Workout
If you want to ditch the spare tire and get in tip-top shape, experts recommend fitting a half-hour of exercise into your daily routine. Doesn’t sound doable? You’ll be pleasantly surprised to discover that a 15-minute workout can actually help you lose weight—you just have to be strategic about the one you choose. HIIT, or high-intensity interval training, involves short bursts of high-intensity exercise such as burpees or weighted squat jumps followed by a low-intensity rest phase such as walking or stretching. A study published in the journal BMC Endocrine Disorders discovered that engaging in a 15-minute-long HIIT workout improved overweight participants’ insulin sensitivity more significantly than moderate-intensity training. “The main point of HIIT is the excess post-oxygen consumption ‘EPOC.’ In other words, 24 hours after your workout, your metabolism is still revved up,” health fitness instructor Jim White, RD, ACSM, and owner of Jim White Fitness & Nutrition Studios tells us.
Pack Snack Bags for the Week
Arm your office desk drawer and your car’s glove compartment with healthy snacks to munch on when hunger strikes on the go. Instead of leaving it up to your willpower to make a healthy food choice—which isn’t exactly effective when your mind is flooded with fast food cravings—take 20 minutes out of your day to pack snack bags in advance. Eat This! Tip: Fill small, resealable bags with a single serving size of wholesome picks such as nuts, roasted chickpeas, and low-sugar trail mix on hand. Devoting less than half an hour a week to pre-portioning portable snacks will help you beat that pesky potato chip habit, pack more nutrients into your diet, and transform your summer-body goals into sheer reality.
Take a Coffee Break
Trim your mile-long Starbucks order by scrapping the fancy fixings and order your coffee black. Drinking java has been linked to lowering your risk of depression, providing migraine relief, curbing cravings, improving skin elasticity, and relieving migraines. And the glorious benefits don’t just end there: According to a study published in the journal Physiology & Behavior, participants who sipped caffeinated coffee had a 16 percent higher metabolic rate on average than those who drank decaf. Ordering your cup sans milk, cream, and flavored syrups can help you cut back on calories and added sugars—a foolproof way to reduce your risk of metabolic diseases such as obesity, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes.
Walk It Out
Getting fit doesn’t mean you have to clear your schedule and devote hours to the gym. A study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that adding a 20-minute brisk walk to your daily routine can improve longevity and overall health. So instead of confining yourself to the cafeteria during your lunch break, go for a quick walk outdoors—you’ll burn some calories, enjoy some sun, and get your daily dose of depression-fighting vitamin D. Wearable tech can help you monitor your steps and may encourage you to get fit and stay fit check out Fitbit – Free shipping on $50+
Don’t underestimate the power of your mind when it comes to giving your well-being a much-needed makeover. “Science shows that stress can trigger cravings for less healthy foods, as well as set your body up to store more fat. So, meditation, yoga, and taking time to do things you like to do are great healthy-weight strategies,” Annie Kay, MS, RDN, Lead Nutritionist at Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health tells us in 32 Ways to Lose Weight Faster. Plus, meditation may be effective in treating high blood pressure, symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome, anxiety and depression, and insomnia, according to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health.
Yes you read it right Vacuum! You’ll burn calories, reduce allergies, and transform the most-dreaded household chore into your new favorite pastime. How? Just by plugging in your Dyson. Researchers at the UCLA Department of Medicine found that dust mites that occupy your home’s hidden spaces can trigger allergies and cause you to pop antihistamines, which, if used frequently, can increase your appetite and carbohydrate cravings.
Boil Some Eggs
Taking less than 10 minutes to boil some eggs for the week ahead will help pack your diet with lutein and zeaxanthin, two nutrients that work to promote eye health, and may even help you keep your tummy tight. A study published in the International Journal of Obesity found that participants who ate eggs for breakfast experienced a 65 percent greater weight loss and a 34 percent greater reduction in waist circumference than those who bit into a bagel bright and early. Spice up your a.m. meal by experimenting with boil times (soft-boiled eggs require about six minutes while hard-boiled calls for about 10 minutes) and pairing the protein with nutrient-dense foods such as leafy greens, alliums, and anti-inflammatory turmeric and cayenne.
Follow the 20-20-20 Rule
If you spend the day staring at blue-light-emitting screens like the majority of Americans, you likely suffer from watery, bloodshot eyes by end of day. Combat your iDevices’ peeving side effects by investing in computer glasses and try the 20-20-20 rule: Every 20 minutes, take a 20-second break from your screen and focus your eyes on something at least 20 feet away. It’ll help you reduce eye strain and fatigue, according to the Canadian Association of Optometrists.
Stretch it Out
Aim to stretch your muscles for about 10 to 15 minutes at least two to three times a week—even if you’re not hitting the gym that consistently. According to Harvard Medical School, stretching can help your joints grow more flexible and improve balance, which are vital as you age. “As with all types of exercise, you need to engage in stretching regularly in order to reap lasting benefits. If you only stretch occasionally, the effects are short-lived,” Harvard Health Publishing explains.