37 Low-Effort, High-Yield Lifestyle Changes

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We often hear about the importance of making significant lifestyle changes to improve our health, and sure, giving up smoking, exercising regularly and eating a healthy, balanced diet are still the most impactful moves that many of us can make. But did you know that even small adjustments can have a major influence on our overall health and wellbeing? 

By incorporating minor tweaks into your daily routine, you may well experience noticeable improvements in your physical and mental well-being. So, don’t be overwhelmed by the thought of drastic transformations; instead, embrace the power of small changes.

Today we’ve teamed up with PureHealth Research to offer these 37 low-effort, high yield lifestyle changes that can have a positive impact on your health and wellbeing.

Brush Your Teeth With Your Non-Dominant Hand

Some tentative research has shown that using your non-dominant hand to brush your teeth can help improve cognitive function and stimulate the growth of new neural connections in the brain. This simple change can also help you become more ambidextrous and improve fine motor skills, though it should be noted that some research suggests there are risks involved.

Stand On One Foot For One Minute The Moment You Get Out Of Bed

By doing this, you may be able to improve your balance and coordination, which is essential for preventing falls and maintaining overall physical fitness. Plus, it’s a great way to wake up your body and mind in the morning!

Drink A Glass Of Water Before Each Meal

Drinking water before meals has been linked to easier weight management and reduced calorie intake (if that’s what you’re going for, of course). It’s an easy way to stay habitually hydrated and promote healthy digestion.

Use A Smaller Plate For Your Meals

Using a smaller plate can help control portion sizes, preventing overeating and ultimately promoting healthier eating habits and helping with weight management. Research suggests that reducing the plate size by 30% can lead to a 30% decrease in food consumption on average.

Smaller plates make portions appear larger, tricking the brain into feeling satisfied with less food. Also, most of us usually “clean our plates,” even if we’ve had our fill, as such, using smaller dinnerware can result in eating less food overall, especially if you’re one to lick your plate clean.

Sleep On Your Left Side

Sleeping on your left side can help reduce heartburn symptoms, improve digestion, and promote better blood flow to the heart.

Chew Gum While Walking

Chewing gum while walking has been found to increase energy expenditure and heart rate, resulting in more calories burned. Pass us the Wrigley’s!

Replace Your Chair With An Exercise Ball

Sitting on an exercise ball instead of a chair can help improve posture, core strength, and balance, within reason, of course!

Swap Out Your Regular Light Bulbs For Red Ones In The Bedroom

Red light has been shown to have less impact on melatonin production, which can lead to better sleep quality.

Sleep In A Cool Room

Keeping your bedroom cool (around 16-19°C or 60-67°F) can help you fall asleep faster and enjoy deeper, more restorative sleep. How you do that is down to your sleep environment; turn a fan on, deploy the AC responsibly, or simply crack a window!

Master The Art Of Power Posing

Striking a confident pose for just two minutes can boost self-esteem and increase feelings of power. Try it before your next big presentation or meeting. 

Try Tongue Scraping

Tongue scraping, an ancient Ayurvedic practice, can improve oral hygiene and might even enhance your sense of taste. Tongue scraping helps remove bacteria, food debris, and dead cells from the tongue’s surface – a study found that tongue scraping reduced harmful bacteria linked to bad breath and dental decay. So start using a tongue scraper once a day, preferably after brushing, to improve your oral health.

Hug It Out

Hugging releases oxytocin, the “feel-good” hormone, which can reduce stress and improve mood. Yep, hugging is the ultimate “feel-good” remedy. It’s like a secret handshake among humans, saying, “Hey, I’ve got your back, and your front, and your sides too!.”

Sing In The Shower

Singing releases endorphins, which can make you feel happier and more relaxed. Plus, it’s an easy way to practice deep breathing, which has numerous health benefits, too. 

But wait, was that the sound of the shower screen smashing?

Take A Cold Shower

Cold showers have been linked to increased alertness, improved circulation, and a potentially stronger immune system. Cold water swimming is thought to bring similar benefits.

Read: What are the health benefits of taking a cold shower?

Write With A Pen & Paper Instead Of Typing (At Least Once In A While)

Writing by hand from time to time may help improve memory retention and cognitive function when compared to typing. If nothing else, it can be relaxing and produce beautiful results!

Add A Pinch Of Cinnamon To Your Coffee

Cinnamon has been shown to have numerous health benefits, including reducing inflammation, improving insulin sensitivity, and lowering blood sugar levels.

Practice Deep Breathing Exercises For Five Minutes Each Day

Deep breathing exercises can help reduce stress, lower blood pressure, and improve overall well-being.

Wear Socks To Bed

Whilst admittedly not very sexy, wearing socks to bed can help regulate body temperature and improve sleep quality.

Listen To White Noise While You Work

White noise has been found to improve focus and productivity by masking distracting background noises. Now, did you just hear a knock at the door too?

Eat Your Meals With Chopsticks

Using chopsticks as part of a process to eat more mindfully can help slow down your eating pace, allowing your body more time to register fullness and potentially helping with weight management.

Use A Blue Light Filter On Your Electronic Devices

Blue light filters can help reduce eye strain and improve sleep quality by limiting exposure to blue light in the evening.

Take A Daily 20-Minute Power Nap

Short naps have been found to boost alertness, creativity, and mood. It’s best to time them just right, though; too late in the day, and it might be to the detriment of your sleep.

Perform Random Acts Of Kindness

Engaging in acts of kindness has been linked to increased happiness and overall well-being.

Eat Dark Chocolate

Dark chocolate – when enjoyed in moderation, of course – is rich in antioxidants and has been linked to numerous health benefits, including improved heart health and brain function. As if we needed an excuse!

Drink Green Tea

Green tea is packed with antioxidants and has been shown to potentially improve brain function, aid in weight management, and lower the risk of certain diseases.

Use A Standing Desk

Using a standing desk can help reduce the risk of obesity, diabetes, and heart disease associated with prolonged sitting.

Hang Upside Down For A Few Minutes Each Day

Inversion therapy has been found to relieve back pain, improve circulation, and promote relaxation, although this certainly isn’t something you should be doing without supervision and expert guidance.

Add Turmeric To Your Meals

Turmeric contains curcumin is a powerful anti-inflammatory compound that also happens to taste delicious. Just watch out for that white shirt of yours!

Meditate For 10 Minutes Each Day

Meditation has been found to reduce stress, improve focus, and increase overall well-being.

Read: 5 of the best meditation apps for 2023

Walk Barefoot On Grass Or Sand

Walking barefoot on natural surfaces can help stimulate the pressure points on your feet, leading to various health benefits, including potentially reduced stress and improved balance. It also, more simply, helps you feel more grounded.

Try Forest Bathing

Immersing yourself in nature, sometimes referred to as ‘forest bathing’, has been linked to reduced stress, improved mood, and increased immune function. Take a walk in the woods and soak up the benefits. 

Adopt A Plant

Though the ability of houseplants to improve air quality has largely been debunked, having them around the house can reduce stress, as every budding lockdown-based horticulturalist will confirm. They may even boost productivity, too. Plus, having a green companion is a great conversation starter! 

Dance Like Nobody’s Watching

Dancing not only burns calories but also boosts mood, reduces stress, and improves cognitive function. So, turn up the music and let loose! No, not that loud! Hey! Turn that thing down…

Embrace Laughter Therapy

Laughing can lower stress hormones, boost immune function, and even burn calories. Watch a funny movie or attend a comedy show for a healthy dose of humour. Or, you know, try making faces, try telling jokes, making little sounds… 

Take The Stairs Instead Of The Elevator

Taking the stairs is an easy way to incorporate more physical activity into your daily routine, leading to improved cardiovascular health and increased calorie burn.

Snack On Nuts

Nuts are nutrient-dense and have been linked to a whole host of health benefits, not only physically, but mentally, too. Do be careful not to overdo the salted, fried ones, as this might rather mitigate the health benefits.

Smile More Often

Smiling has been found to reduce stress, improve mood, and even lower blood pressure. It’s also infectious, and can bring the mood of everyone around you up, too! Because nobody wins unless everybody wins, right?

The Bottom Line

Incorporating these small, low-effort lifestyle changes into your daily routine may actually have a significant impact on your overall health and well-being, even if that’s mainly because of the holistic effort you’re now putting into your health. 

Though, a word of warning; perhaps don’t try to do all 37 of these little hacks at once. We don’t think standing on your head whilst laughing maniacally, necking a load of nuts and trying to dance, all while trying to pen a letter to a loved one is necessarily the best look!

*Please note that this article is not meant to replace professional medical advice. Always consult with a healthcare professional before making any changes to your lifestyle or diet.*

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