6 Science-Backed Ways to Be Healthier Today (Without Exercising)
If you just don’t have it in you to hit the gym today, we totally understand. But that doesn’t mean you have to throw your health entirely out the window. Here, six science-backed ways to stay on top of your health game today — none of which involve changing into gym clothes.
1. Look at something awe-inspiring.
Via Science of Us
If you can’t remember the last time your jaw dropped in amazement and wonder, I suggest you go searching for some scenery that will make your heart skip a beat. A recent study found that people who reported feeling a sense of awe (defined as “a feeling of reverential respect mixed with fear or wonder”) on a regular basis had lower markers of inflammation which, when high, are correlated to all sorts of unwanted health issues like heart disease and cancer.
2. Listen to music.
Via Huffington Post
A study done by Wilkes University researchers looked at how music affects levels of immunoglobulin A (IgA) in our bodies. What the heck is IgA? Well, it’s a crucial antibody that helps our immune system fight off sickness, and you want all you can get. During the study, researchers looked at students before and after 30 minutes of listening to either a tone click, a radio broadcast, a tape of soothing music, or nothing at all. They found that the students who listened to music had significantly higher increases in IgA than students in any of the other groups. Your takeaway? Listening to music could be an easy ticket to a stronger immune system.
3. Take a nap.
Via Fast Company
Finally, an excuse to snooze on the job: A recent study found that taking a 30-minute nap during the day, after a not-so-great night of sleep, can be seriously beneficial to our health. Researchers found that after a nap, adult males who’d gotten just two hours of sleep the night before saw a stabilization of norepinephrine, a stress-related neurotransmitter that, when out of whack, can increase blood pressure, heart rate and blood sugar. So go ahead and curl up under your desk for a nap, without shame.
4. Load up on spinach
Via Science Daily
If you’re looking to shed some pounds, get this: A weight-loss study out of Lund University in Sweden found that women who consumed a daily dose of spinach in their green juice each morning lost significantly more weight — 43 percent more, to be exact — than those who drank green juice sans spinach. Turns out, the green leaf membranes in spinach, called thykaloids, extend the process of digestion so you feel fuller for longer, and don’t eat as much come the next meal. Meaning no mid-morning donut or midnight snack cravings. Amen to that!
Via The Atlantic
If you were about to call your significant other and start the conversation with, “Ughhh, I hate the way you make the bed,” then, surprisingly, you are on the right track. A recent study found that people who complain with the hope of achieving a certain result — like, say, a perfectly turned-down duvet — are happier than those who complain simply for the sake of complaining. Researchers also found that suppressing complaints of any sort is linked to long-term stress and all the associated health problems that come along with it. So, go ahead and let it out — for your health’s sake, of course.
6. Have sex.
Seriously! Studies shows, getting it on is great for our health for a long, long list of reasons: It lowers blood pressure, decreases risk for heart disease in men, improves sleep, increases immunoglobulin A, which can help us ward of colds and the flu, and more. Do with this information what you please.
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