How to Build Your Daily Health Routine (according to science)

How to Build Your Daily Health Routine (according to science)

Building a healthy daily routine is an investment in yourself. By implementing the healthy habits that can make you feel better & healthier — habits like exercising, meditating, and getting adequate sleep — you’re creating the environment for your mind & body to thrive.

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Big or small, your habits combined form the foundation of your daily routine. Most of our habits are formed without much thought on our part. That’s why it’s helpful to understand the importance of having good habits and how picking the right ones, can lead to a healthy daily routine.

Setting a healthy routine, in particular, can be a challenge - but well worth the effort. In this guide, we’ll help you discover some positive daily routines that can lead to a healthier and happier life.

Finding and adopting the right daily health routine will not only improve your long-term health but can also immediately energize you and help you feel better. In fact, your mind and body will thank you for the extra care you’ve given it. 

But first, you may be looking for a bit more convincing on the benefits of maintaining a healthy routine.

Why Create a Healthy Routine?

This might seem confusing to you at first but having no routine is way more mentally, physically and emotionally draining than the effort it takes to create the right habits and routine!

Establishing a healthy daily routine is an investment in yourself. By not doing the things that can make you feel better & healthier — habits like exercising, meditating, and getting adequate sleep — you’re depriving your body and mind of the healthy environment that these types of good habits create. You will inevitably feel tired…inside and out. And to make matters worse, this will have an impact on your dreams and goals.

The key is to create regular and consistent daily patterns, that will take you where you want to go in life, helping you maximize yourself on every level possible.

Now, let’s get into some of the things you can do in your daily routine to reach a healthier state of being (e.g. more energy!).

What goes into a daily health routine

1. Eat healthy meals

There's a belief that high-calorie, sugary meals make us happy when we're feeling down. But actually, research suggests that healthy food choices such as eating fruits and vegetables are not only a long-term investment in our well-being, but also have better mental health benefits in the short-term. In a nationally representative panel survey of over 12,000 adults from Australia, researchers showed that fruit and vegetable consumption predicted increases in happiness, life satisfaction, and well-being over two years.

A wealth of research shows that the experience of negative emotions and stress leads to increased consumption of unhealthy (comfort) food in many people. One study testing the effectiveness of comfort food in improving mood showed that the consumption of comfort food did in fact have a mood boosting effect after a negative mood induction but not to a greater extent than non-comfort or neutral food. S, even though people believe that snacking on unhealthy foods like ice cream or chocolate provides greater pleasure and psychological benefits, is not actually more psychologically beneficial than other foods.

For many people, especially busy professionals, eating healthy is not necessarily due to a lack of desire, but the difficulty of finding healthy food when they need it. All too often, we find ourselves scrambling to grab a meal on limited time, or find ourselves in an office or common space filled with donuts, pizzas and bagels. The best way to build a healthy eating schedule is to be intentional about it and plan ahead of time.

Now with Basis, even the busiest of us can grab a healthy lunch as part of a daily routine. Whether it’s lunch ideas you can make in advance and take with you to work, or a healthy meal pre-selected and delivered to you at the right time, Basis can help you fit the right healthy eating habits seamlessly into your life. 

2. Sleep well

Consistent, adequate and quality sleep is the best natural 'drug' we have to improve our health. It might seem obvious, but if you want to feel your best, then you must get enough and consistent sleep. But it's not enough to just aim for a sleep time. Getting your body to a state of sleep is a trained condition and a state that requires consistency to accomplish.

For example, your body naturally gets energized according to the chronotype you fall into and this will also determine what time you'll be primed to fall asleep. If you don't follow a consistent sleep pattern and don't know what your body's natural time is, you'll find yourself struggling with sleep and possibly end up chronically sleep deprived.

Read more about the Circadian Rhythm

Basis automatically understands your body's chronotype and helps you plan your day around your individual energy schedule so you can optimize your day and sleep times accordingly.

3. Exercise Regularly 

Exercise has numerous benefits, impacting not only your physique but also your mental health and physical health. Increased physical activity has been proven to have a reduction in relative risk of death. Physically inactive people (i.e. engaging in less than 1 hour of exercise per week) experienced an increase in all-cause mortality, doubling of cardiovascular-related deaths and an increase in cancer-related deaths. These relative risks are similar to those for hypertension, hypercholesterolemia and obesity, and they approach those associated with moderate cigarette smoking.

The positive aspect to this is that an increase in physical fitness will reduce the risk of premature death, the effect appears to be graded such that even small improvements in physical fitness will result in a significant reduction in risk. Plus, it can give you a boost in energy and lead to better sleep!

You don’t have to run a marathon every day, either — even just 30 minutes of walking can offer significant rewards. The best way to increase your physical activity is to make it part of your daily plan and schedule it in your day! Basis does this automatically for you while also finding the best time and best type of workout for you to do each day based on what your body needs.

4. Decompress

It’s normal to feel stressed from time to time, but high stress levels can leave you vulnerable to a number of health conditions and problems, like depression and elevated blood pressure to name a few. In our busy lifestyles, it can be easy to forget an important activity - resting.

Our bodies simply aren’t built for spending all day working without a break. Over time, the lack of rest will drain your energy (and enthusiasm) and you'll likely burn out, thereby killing your productivity altogether. But you can easily mitigate this by making sure you build in some structured rest time in your day.  

Find a relaxing activity, and set aside some time every day to do it as part of your daily routine. This could be taking a power nap, walking outside, meditating, or simply taking a few minutes to do nothing.

Meditation in particular has an exponential effect on the restorative effect a few minutes each day can have. Like exercise, regular meditation has plenty of benefits, including stress reduction. Our monkey minds is constantly looking for ways to escape the present moment and that can lead to a constant marathon in pursuit of mental distractions happening in your brain. Thoughts about the past and the future make us worried. Worries become anxiety that mean we can no longer relax. Regular meditation practice is proven to reduce blood pressure and lower cortisol, which in turn helps to increase focus and make you happier.

And unlike how it’s depicted in movies, you don’t need to get in a special position and find a zen room to meditate. Just a few minutes in your regular workspace will do the trick just fine. 

Having trouble getting started? Basis automatically finds meditation times in your day to help you ease it in your routine and establish a regular practice.

5. Hydrate

As undoubtedly the most important nutrient and the only one whose absence will be lethal within days, keeping a healthy hydration habit is very important! But did you know that being even slightly dehydrated can worsen your mood and decrease concentration? Studies have shown that being even a half liter dehydrated can increase your cortisol levels.

Yet, most people are dehydrated. Our bodies dehydrate overnight, stress can cause dehydration, and dehydration can cause stress. It's a vicious cycle. What’s more, as you age, your body gets more dehydrated. And for the more than 131 million Americans who take prescription medication, the effect of the dehydration is even more pronounced. 

You can break this cycle it by building more water consumption into your day. It all starts with 1-2 glasses of water as you wake up and repeating that every few hours.

6. Socialize

Socializing is good for the mind and body. We're social animals by nature, so by definition, we will tend to function better when we're part of a community and around others. Satisfying social relationships are essential for our mental and physical well-being. People who spend a lot of time alone, such as the elderly or new moms, may have an increased risk of depression and lower quality of life.

You don't have to be hyper social to see the health benefits of connecting with others. Just being able to shoot the breeze for half an hour a day, can be very positive. Socializing not only staves off feelings of loneliness, but also it helps sharpen memory and cognitive skills, increases your sense of happiness and well-being, and may even help you live longer. In-person is best, but connecting via technology also works.


How to find the right routine for you

Create the routine that’s right for you. We don’t all have the same schedules or responsibilities and some of us struggle with certain parts of daily life more than others. All healthy routines should include eating a nutrition-rich diet, exercising, and getting enough sleep, but no two routines will be exactly  the same. In fact, your routine may not even be exactly the same every day.

1. The first step to a successful routine is planning

Some of the most effective and productive people plot their day in blocks of time, with a specific activity planned for each. This is commonly known as the time blocking method, and using this method ensures that you take the time to do all the things that matter - importantly that your health doesn’t take a back seat to work or distraction.

2. The second step is automation

Automate these habits as much as possible. We only have so much mental bandwidth to devote to making decisions. When decision fatigue sets in, we’re likely to revert to whatever is easiest, even if we know it’s unhealthy.

One effective form of automation is scheduling and setting reminders. Another, is to use an app like Basis. that automatically understands your health habits and plans health habits around your daily schedule.

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