We all have good days and days we’d rather sleep through. Work and everyday life often bring many problems that create stress. In addition, there are days when we feel bad from the moment we get up, and every little thing bothers us. Even on such days, there are solutions to help ourselves, lift positive energy, and improve our mood.
Here are the five best ways to boost your mood naturally with small changes in your daily habits:
DRINK MORE WATER
Water is the primary ingredient of the human body. 75% of the body weight in newborns and up to 55% of the elderly is water, which is necessary for life. Water intake depends on climatic conditions, time of year, body weight, health condition, and activity. Recommendations for daily fluid requirements are 3.7 liters for men and 2.7 liters for women. With more significant physical activity and higher air temperatures, it is necessary to take in additional water.
Water, or its lack (dehydration), can influence cognitive performance. Even mild dehydration reduces concentration and can increase feelings of low mood, anxiety, or depression. Fatigue is one of the first signs that your body lacks fluids. Therefore, if you are tired, it is time for you to drink a glass of cold water.
Try to drink water before you get thirsty. Drink as often as possible, even when you are not thirsty. The truth is when you feel thirsty, you are already slightly dehydrated. Drink water before or after a meal, not during a meal, because it interferes with the digestion of food. If you still want to drink, drink smaller amounts in smaller sips.
Try to always have a bottle of natural still water on hand!
There is a saying that we are what we eat. Food affects not only physical health but also mental health. It is important to eat regularly and choose food that provides enough energy. Avoid sweets, artificial juices, and fast, fried, and processed food. Such meals hurt glucose and insulin levels, leading to bad moods and fatigue. Changing your entire diet overnight is hard, so start changing your eating habits gradually.
To begin with, replace sweets and snacks with healthy solutions such as nuts. Nuts contain protein and fiber that help stabilize blood sugar levels (unstable blood sugar causes mood swings). Almonds, hazelnuts, pistachios, macadamias, and walnuts can be great snacks, and it is recommended to eat a handful of nuts per day.
Every morning for breakfast, eat a portion of cereal, to which you can add pieces of fruit. Whole grains like oats can keep you in a good mood all morning. Serotonin production is affected by the consumption of carbohydrates, which is why people on diets with fewer carbohydrates often feel depressed. Cereals are necessary for the proper functioning of the body, but instead of white bread and white flour products, eat whole grains.
A well-known remedy for a bad mood is dark chocolate, which many call an antidepressant, and they reach for it when they are sad or anxious. Dark chocolate stimulates the production of endorphins, better known as the happiness hormone. Experts recommend consuming a little bit of chocolate daily, but let it be the one with the highest percentage of cocoa and, of course, from organic ingredients.
In addition to improving your physical condition and helping you lose weight and shape your body, physical activity also has several positive psychological effects. Even a quick 20-minute walk can lift your mood and reduce stress and anxiety. During exercise, serotonin, endorphin, and dopamine levels increase significantly and make you feel good. These hormones are also called happy hormones; thanks to them, you feel euphoric after running or training.
Find out which gyms exist in your city and choose the one where you feel most comfortable. Choose yoga, pilates, or dance classes if you like meeting new people and socializing. To achieve the desired body look, hire a personal trainer to create an exercise plan and show you how to use the gym equipment properly.
Running is always the most popular, whether outside or on a treadmill. If motivation is not a problem for you and you have enough space at home, you can start the workout with popular YouTube videos, of which there are many these days (for beginners or advanced women or men, with or without equipment). If you don’t find yourself in any of the above, just walk more. Reduce your car use or get off the bus one stop earlier and walk. Soon, you will feel positive changes.
Start today, choose the physical activity that suits you best, and enjoy the happiness it will bring you.
GET ENOUGH SLEEP
Quality and a good sleep routine are crucial for physical and mental health. Most adults need 7.5 to 8.5 hours of uninterrupted sleep. You don’t get enough rest if you snooze the alarm clock in the morning. Lack of sleep increases the risk of many diseases. Sleep quality directly affects our immune system, susceptibility to various infections, and the length of their treatment. Long-term sleep deprivation is associated with a higher risk of cardiovascular disease and hormonal disorders. People who do not sleep enough are prone to anger, sadness, rage, and mental exhaustion.
Relaxing before bed is the most important thing to improve our sleep quality. Treat yourself to a relaxing bath or drink a cup of soothing tea (valerian or chamomile tea). Choose a quality mattress and pillows that are neither hard nor soft, and put a few drops of essential oils that positively affect sleep. Be sure to avoid coffee and alcoholic beverages, as well as hot and spicy foods, before going to bed. Also, avoid watching television, working on the computer, and all electrical devices that emit light negatively affecting melatonin secretion, the sleep hormone. Instead, we recommend using a Himalayan salt lamp, which has numerous health benefits, especially for sleep problems. In addition, it will make your bedroom look like an oasis of peace and relaxation.
CUDDLE WITH A PET
Pet owners know it is almost impossible to stay in a lousy mood when interacting with furry friends. Many studies have proven the benefits of owning pets for our health, whether a dog, cat, or rabbit. It is known that cuddling with a pet significantly reduces the levels of cortisol, the hormone responsible for stress. Ten minutes of playing with your pet are enough to lift your mood instantly. Even funny videos of dogs and cats can make us more positive and energetic.
Even if you don’t have your pet, you can relax with someone else’s, provided you love that animal. Indeed, you know one of the happy dog or cat owners. If you consider becoming a cute furry animal friend, remember that pets are not for everyone. However, they come with many responsibilities that can bring added stress. When you decide to adopt or buy a pet, first get good information, preferably from people who already own such a breed. Please find out about a specific breed of animal and how demanding they are. For most people, the advantages of owning pets outweigh any disadvantages, as they are friends who are always there for you and will never leave you, even in the hardest of times.
Applying just a few tips mentioned above in your daily life will make positive changes soon. It is important to note that if the depressed moods are intense and last for an extended period, it would be best to seek professional help. Along with treatment with antidepressants and/or psychotherapy, any healthy change in daily habits can help speed up healing. Remember that you have the most influence on how you feel. Don’t wait. Start improving your mental health today.
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