Repeated behaviors turn into habits that can be good or bad. We sometimes find that we’ve formed habits that start defining our lives. They can be bad habits that can be detrimental to our health. You can only work on and control bad habits once you identify them.
Below is a list of some common bad habits and how they affect your health:
- Excessive Alcohol Intake
Drinking socially can easily turn into a habit. Men taking more than four drinks per day and women taking more than three drinks a day are considered to have gone beyond safe limits. Excessive alcohol intake can compromise the immune system, making your body a target for diseases. Alcohol can also have long-term effects like; difficulty concentrating, decreased libido, lack of sleep, and mood swings. Other effects are the decreased appetite and lack of interest in activities you once enjoyed. Read this article which provides tips on how to stop drinking.
Cigarette smoking is one of the most addictive habits in human history. It’s the cause of death of one out of every five people in the United States. Smoking affects almost all organs of the body and is the cause of many diseases. It reduces the general health condition of smokers, who become susceptible to lung and cardiovascular diseases. Smoking can also damage blood vessels and spike blood pressure.
- Not Exercising
Regular body exercise is responsible for good health, a strong heart, and improved blood circulation. On the other hand, lack of exercise can contribute to weight gain, high blood pressure, memory failure, brittle bones, and weak muscles. Lack of exercise can slow you down, which can gradually turn into depression.
- Not Getting Enough Sleep
Sleep is meant to relax and rest not only your body but also your mental faculties. Sleeping can recharge the body. If you lose even one night of good sleep, you’ll wake up feeling tired, cranky, and grumpy. Your mental ability will also be affected.
Repeated sleep deprivation confuses your body and has been associated with many chronic diseases like; diabetes, mental illness, high blood pressure, and even heart failure. Lack of enough sleep can also cause weight gain and weaken the immune system.
- Too Much Screen Time
Today, many people, both adults, and children are hooked to their laptops, phones, or other gadgets oblivious of the dangers associated with too much screen time. It’s no longer a wonder to walk into a room full of people and find everyone glued to their gadgets. Long periods of exposure to the light emitted from these gadgets affect the brain and can also cause permanent damage to the eyes. Sitting for long periods in the same position also leads to severe neck and back problems and can also interfere with your mental and emotional state.
If you watch TV as a way of winding down before going to bed, over time. Thus, your sleep schedule and quality will be compromised. Too much screen time also affects children’s concentration and interferes with their brain development. Reduced physical activity contributes to obesity and other health conditions.
- Sitting For Long Hours
You may be working overtime to achieve the life you’ve always dreamed of. Even if your job involves sitting for long hours, it’s important to take regular moving and stretching breaks. Sitting for long periods has been linked to health issues such as increased blood pressure and sugar, extra body fat around the waist, bad posture, and a surge in cholesterol levels. Sitting for long hours can also make you susceptible to heart disease, cancer, or diabetes. Being in the same place for too long can also affect your mental health.
- Eating Too Much Junk Food
Grabbing some fast food on your way home once in a while is not bad. But if you find that you’re replacing healthy food with junk, you should be alarmed. Junk foods have little or no nutritional value to your body. Most contain carbohydrates with insignificant to no fiber. When these foods are broken down by the digestive system, they’re processed as glucose, which increases as you continue consuming junk food. Consequently, you become insulin resistant, therefore, a type two diabetic.
The carbonated drinks also contain high levels of refined sugar, an equivalent of eight teaspoons. The saturated fat created during the processing of junk food only makes the situation worse.
Junk food can affect your respiratory system, central nervous system, and even the reproductive system as some substances added to the food may have an effect on your fertility. Junk food will also compromise the health of your skin, bones, and hair.
- Not Drinking Enough Water
Human bodies are made up of 60% water which is crucial to maintain body fluid balance. Body fluids help in important functions like absorption, digestion, lubrication, circulation, creation of saliva, regulation of body temperature, and transportation of nutrients. We lose water through urination, sweating, and even breathing. So, we should regularly hydrate to keep our bodies functioning properly.
Not drinking enough water can have negatively mild to chronic effects on your health. You’ll know that you’re not drinking enough water when you experience one or more of these symptoms:
- Constant thirst
- Kidney stones
- Bad breath
- Hunger pangs and sugar cravings
- Flaky, less elastic, sagging skin
- Cracked lips
- Muscle and joint aches
- Persistent fatigue
- Low energy
It’s possible to trade bad habits for good ones by being proactive. If the habit’s triggered by stress and boredom, find new and fun ways of doing things. And if the habit requires checking into a rehabilitation facility, the sooner, the better. Enlist the help of an accountability partner to help you beat the bad habits.