6 Positive Lifestyle Factors That Promote Good Health

How to Live Long and Well

You can't change your genes or even much of the environment around you, but there are lifestyle choices you can make to promote your health. Know and consciously understand that eating, drinking, activity, sleeping, or smoking can reduce your health risks and potentially extend your lifestyle.

This article looks at six lifestyle factors that are supported by the best evidence for your health in the long run. It shows you why they are important and how to start making positive changes.

  1.  Getting the Right Amount of Sleep

6 Positive Lifestyle Factors That Promote Good Health

Getting the right amount of sleep, and doing so regularly, is the most important thing. It is often overlooked because people focus on diet and exercise, but research supports the link between sleep and life expectancy.

To the surprise of some, the relationship is a U-shaped curve. This means that sleeping too little and too much can affect your longevity.

A 2021 study of 1.1 million people in Europe and the United States found that 25% slept less than the recommended sleep for their age. More than half of teens don't get enough sleep. Adults do better, but have more insomnia and poor sleep quality.

Getting a good night's sleep is important to recharge your mind and body. It helps the body repair cells and remove waste. It is also important in memory, and lack of sleep can lead to forgetfulness.

Even if you plan to get a good night's sleep, health problems can disrupt your plans. For example, sleep apnea can greatly increase health risks.

Sleep apnea affects millions of people, but many cases are believed to have been missed. Part of the reason is that symptoms such as snoring or waking up for breath do not occur in all cases. Sleep apnea can present with many surprising signs and symptoms, such as teeth grinding and depression.

If you have any concerns, talk to your healthcare provider about a sleep study. There are treatments, like CPAP, that lower risk and improve quality of life. Changes in your sleep patterns can signal other health issues too, so see your healthcare provider for a checkup if anything changes.

2.  Eating Well-Balanced Meals

6 Positive Lifestyle Factors That Promote Good Health

A healthy diet gives you energy and reduces your risk of heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and other diseases. Some of these conditions have been shown to be related to food and nutrition, such as red meat and colorectal cancer.

Taking steps to change your lifelong diet is more helpful than jumping on the latest fad diet. You may have heard author Michael Pollan's iconic phrase: "Eat food. "Not too much. Mainly plants. "Among these plants, choose plants in iridescent colors to make sure you get all the nutrients you need.

One starting point is the highly regarded Mediterranean diet. It is rich in many of the healthiest foods and naturally limits less healthy options. The more you follow the Mediterranean diet, the lower your risk of developing multiple diseases.

A 2018 review looked at more than 12 million people and the risk of more than a dozen chronic diseases. Researchers have found that people who choose the Mediterranean diet have a reduced risk of heart disease, stroke, cancer and other diseases.

The Mediterranean diet has plenty of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, "good" oils, and plenty of herbs and spices. It contains no highly processed foods, refined grains, or added sugar.

3.  Making Time for Physical Activity

6 Positive Lifestyle Factors That Promote Good Health

30 minutes of physical activity a day can protect heart health. It also reduces bone loss as we age, and reduces the risk of osteoporosis. A 2021 study of colon cancer survivors found that living in a "green" community that favors exercise reduces the risk of death, which is important.

A 2017 review by The Lancet found that people who participated in moderate physical activity every day had a lower risk of heart disease and overall mortality, regardless of income level.

Most importantly, physical activity is a low-cost way to promote health and even save money. Sometimes your health condition may limit your exercise options, but you can continue exercising by cleaning windows, mowing lawns, sweeping sidewalks, and other basic tasks.

Once you're over 65, you may benefit by increasing balance and flexibility exercises, but keep exercising as well. Whether you're dancing, gardening, swimming, or cycling, choose a moderate-intensity exercise that you know you'll enjoy.

4.  Keeping a Healthy Body Weight

6 Positive Lifestyle Factors That Promote Good Health

Obesity is associated with a shorter life span and a higher risk of many diseases. The good news is that just being slightly overweight won't shorten your lifespan. In fact, for people over the age of 65, it's better to be on the normal high side than the lower part.

A 2018 study looked at body mass index (BMI) and mortality over a 24-year period. A BMI between 19 and 24 is considered "normal" or healthy. For people who fall into the obese range, a BMI between 30 and 35 means a 27% increase in mortality. A BMI of 35 to 40 is associated with a 93% increase.

In people with a BMI in the overweight range (BMI 25 to 30), the mortality rate is higher only among smokers. People with a high BMI (egBMI 24) has the lowest risk of death.

BMI Limitations

BMI is an outdated, flawed measure. It does not take into account factors such as body composition, race, gender, ethnicity, and age. Although it is a biased measure, BMI is widely used in the medical community because it is an inexpensive and quick way to analyze a person's potential health status and outcomes.

There is no real magic in maintaining a healthy weight. Eating a nutritious diet and exercising daily is the real "secret" of most people. If you are struggling, talk to your healthcare provider. But remember, fad eating won't work, and the best hope for success lies in making long-term changes.

5.  Not Smoking or Chewing Tobacco

6 Positive Lifestyle Factors That Promote Good Health

In the United States alone, smoking causes about 480,000 deaths each year. In addition, 16 million people are alive but suffering from smoking-related diseases. If you want the opportunity to live a good life, don't smoke or chew tobacco, no matter how long you live.

The list of smoking-related diseases and cancers is long. If you find it difficult to quit smoking, and you think the disease will only appear later in life, it may be helpful to consider more short-term goals. Maybe it's too expensive, or maybe the indoor smoking ban limits your social activities.

Or maybe midlife questions will help you! Smoking accelerates skin wrinkling. There is also a link between smoking and erectile dysfunction in men. Quitting smoking, or avoiding smoking in the first place, saves lives, but also protects its quality.

6.  Limiting or Avoiding Alcohol

6 Positive Lifestyle Factors That Promote Good Health

Despite all the hype about red wine and longevity, drinking should be moderate and, for many people, simply not needed. Red wine has been found to have some health-protecting effects, but there are other ways to reap these benefits.

Red wine is rich in flavonoids, especially resveratrol, which is highly nutrient-dense. However, resveratrol is also found in red grapes themselves, red grape juice, and even peanuts.

Moderate alcohol consumption (one drink a day for women and two drinks a day for men) can reduce the risk of heart disease. However, the link between alcohol and breast cancer suggests that even this amount should be used with caution.

Women who drank three drinks a week had a 15% increased risk of breast cancer, and each additional drink per day increased their risk by another 10%.

High concentrations of alcohol can cause health and other problems, including greater risks:

  • Stroke

  • High blood pressure

  • Heart disease

  • Some cancers

  • Accidents

  • Violence

  • Suicide

Drinking alcohol in moderation at special moments may be part of a healthy lifestyle, as long as you don't have personal or family problems with binge drinking. As long as everyone understands the risks involved, sometimes you can toast to your health!


For a long and healthy life, the six key lifestyle behaviors are getting enough sleep, eating a healthy diet, being physically active, maintaining a healthy weight, not smoking, and limiting alcohol consumption.

These factors may seem like part of a common-sense advice you've heard many times, but there's a reason for that. They are all backed up by data, and new medical research continues to point in the same health direction.

A Word From Very well

We know that a good life is more than just physical health, mental, social and spiritual health is equally important. Stress management, developing passions or hobbies, and pampering yourself from time to time should be on your to-do list.

However, even if people do everything right, physical illness or mental stress is not always avoided. Many health providers now believe that the ability to "defy the odds" or show resilience is a skill we should all develop if we want to live our best lives today.

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