Repeat any behavior often enough and it will become a habit, something that you do or neglect to do without giving it much thought. Habits let you perform beneficial behaviors like brushing your teeth as if they were second nature. However, habits can also come in the form of harmful behaviors that can damage your health and shorten your lifespan.
While habits like smoking, overeating and alcohol or drug abuse are obviously bad for your health, the following five behaviors presented by Home Care Assistance, can have life-shortening effects as well.
- Not Getting Enough Sleep – Lack of sleep not only leaves you low on energy, but can negatively affect your cognitive abilities. Studies show that sleep-deprived people have poorer memory skills than those who get adequate rest. Too little sleep can also compromise your immune system, alter your hormone levels, and make it harder to lose weight.
- Eating Late at Night – The main reason that eating right before you go to bed is harmful is because you’re more likely to make unhealthy food choices. Late-night snacking can also lead to heartburn, as a prone or lying position allows stomach acid to back up into your esophagus.
- Avoiding Fruits and Vegetables – Sooner or later, sticking to a meat-and-potatoes diet will damage your health and reduce your chances for a long and vigorous life. Fruits and vegetables contain nutrients that help repair damaged cells and protect them from future harm. Eating five or more servings a day reduces your risk for heart disease by as much as 20 percent.
- Not Flossing Your Teeth – Aside from giving you a sparkling smile and healthier teeth, flossing offers you protection against gum disease, a condition that increases your risk for developing heart disease and pancreatic cancer.
- Watching Too Much Television – Few things are as damaging to your health as a sedentary lifestyle. Activities like watching television which keep you sitting for long hours increase your risks for stroke, obesity, heart disease and diabetes.
For more information about senior health and wellness, reach out to Home Care Assistance Sonoma County. While we are recognized as Sonoma County’s live-in care specialists, we also provide flexible hourly care seven days a week. For more information or to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation, contact a Care Manager at 707-843-4368 today.