By Hannah Carman (Year 9)
Being generally healthy is an important step to living a happy, long-lasting life. Down below are some helpful, and often times unusual, steps you can take to improve your health and wellbeing.
1. Don’t drink energy drinks – There are some nasty stuff in energy drinks that can seriously affect your health. Some energy drinks contain five times more caffeine than coffee and the bad side effects of this include feeling overly nervous and annoyed. Energy drinks can also have around 40 to 50 grams of sugar per can. Eventually, these high levels of sugar can leave you feeling sluggish and very tired.
2. Don’t brush your teeth straight after eating – Brushing your teeth immediately after eating and drinking is definitely not a good idea. You should wait around an hour after eating before brushing teeth. Why? Food – especially acidic foods like citrus fruits and soft drinks - can soften the enamel in your teeth and brushing your teeth while your enamel is soft can lead to the erosion of the tooth layer underneath your enamel.
3. Smell the skin of oranges – This might sound like a ridiculous one, but the scent of orange peel, according to certain studies, can aid in boosting moods and can minimise stress. An orange essential oil also works too.
4. Eat without the television on – This tip can help you stop overeating because when you are watching a screen such as a television, you become so distracted that you don’t notice when you are full.
5. Exercise when your exhausted- Although it sounds like the worst idea imaginable, exercising when tired is actually an effective way to make you feel more energised and alive. This is because exercise helps you work more efficiently, so you don't tire quite as quickly.
6. Don’t use antibacterial soap – Antibacterial soaps won’t necessarily stop you from catching any illnesses. There is no clear evidence from research that antibacterial soaps are better than regular soaps. Furthermore, being exposed to some ingredients in antibacterial soaps can potentially cause risky side effects such as bacterial resistance.
7. Use chopsticks more often- Using chopsticks to eat, as claimed by certain healthy lifestyle coaches, is an effective way to help you stop overeating.
8. Eat less salt – There is a huge focus on sugar when it comes to healthy eating in the media, but not as much focus on how much salt should be consumed. Eating lots of salt can heighten your blood pressure. Individuals that have higher blood pressure than normal have a better chance of developing heart disease. Everybody over 11 years of age should eat only around a teaspoon of salt a day.
9. Drink Herbal Tea - Herbal teas are a very good drink to have in order to better energy levels, sleep, and digestion. Instead of drinking a coffee or hot chocolate in the morning, try a herbal tea (such as chamomile or peppermint) instead.