One of the hardest things to juggle for busy, working professionals is how to stay healthy and well without sacrificing your social life. Modern people have many responsibilities they have to manage, including a full-time job, childcare, and taking care of a home. Many people also manage their own side hustles in order to make money during the cost of living crisis. Making sure that you stay healthy whilst also having a good social life can be very difficult to manage.
There are many reasons why having an active and varied social life is beneficial to your health, both mental and physical. Having an active social life can improve rates of anxiety and depression, improve your self-esteem and empathy levels, and can result in more trusting relationships. Having an active social life can actually drastically improve your general sense of well-being, and can lengthen your life span. Your social life should be a priority, but it can be difficult to balance all of your responsibilities and seeing your friends.
However, there are many ways in which you can stay on top of your health whilst still seeing your friends and family. By making a few small alterations to your habits, you can easily lead a healthy lifestyle without sacrificing other things that are important to you. You don’t need to go to the gym every day and always eat 100% clean in order to be healthy, however, making healthier choices and fitting daily movement into your routine is important to organise everything. Here are all the best ways in which you can stay healthy whilst having an active social life.
One of the biggest reasons why people become unhealthy is because of sedentary lifestyles. Having a sedentary lifestyle can affect your body in multiple different types of ways. For example, you burn fewer calories which makes it more likely that you will put on weight. This could affect your metabolism long-term. When you don’t use your muscles and bones as much, they become weaker. This can be really detrimental to your overall health. Sitting down all the time can also lead to poor blood circulation, higher rates of inflammation, and a higher risk of hormonal imbalance.
There are many reasons why someone may have a more sedentary lifestyle. For example, they may work in an office or take care of children, which means they don’t get moving more. However, you can sneak more bits of exercise in during your day-to-day routine. Instead of sitting with your colleagues, invite them out to go for a walk with you. Instead of meeting your friends for meals or coffee shop trips, go for a walk in the park with your friends. This is a great way to get more movement in your daily life without sacrificing hanging out with your friends. Walking is without a doubt one of the best ways to improve your health without exercising too hard.
Watch Your Alcohol Intake
If you’re always going out with your friends, it can be easy to constantly be in an environment around alcoholic drinks. This makes it much easier for us to have a glass of wine here, and a beer there. Casual drinking is usually a fine and safe way to relax and unwind with friends, but sometimes, it can be detrimental to your health. This is especially true if you often find yourself having a few too many when you’re socialising at the bar or pub with your friend group.
Alcohol can have a few negative effects on our general health. Overconsumption of alcohol can lead to high blood pressure, heart disease, strokes, liver disease, digestive issues and cancer. Beer and wine can also be high in calories, which can mean you find it harder to lose weight if you’re drinking it often. However, alcohol consumed in moderation is fine. When socialising with friends, make sure to moderate how many units you consume. You should also consider switching to spirit and low-calorie tonic options in order to reduce the number of calories you consume whilst socialising.
Find More Alcohol-Free Activities
If you really want to limit the amount of alcohol in your life, you should also consider finding alcohol-free social activities you can do with your friends. There are many things you can do to socialise without always visiting the bar or the pub. Suggesting these activities to your friends and finding something you can do together may also be beneficial to your relationships, as you will be problem-solving and creating together. This can make a great alternative for just sitting around, drinking and chatting, and can be a great way for you and your friends to stay healthy together.
For example, there are more obvious healthy activity alternative activities. You and your friends could walk through a local beauty spot or go on a hike, which is a fantastic way to get some exercise whilst also socialising. However, you could find activities which stimulate your brain activity and keep you mentally healthy. For example, you could find a local darts-playing group or a roller rink. This will improve your coordination and concentration levels. You could go to an arcade or an escape room, which is a great way to keep your brain active and stimulated with challenges. Look at events websites in your local area to find an alcohol-free socialising activity.
Improve Your Sleep Hygiene
One of the major reasons why people become unwell is because they are in a sleep deficit. Sleep is crucial for keeping our bodies healthy and well. You may not be able to get enough sleep for many reasons – you may find it hard to juggle all of your responsibilities, or you may be too anxious about your daily routine in order to get to sleep easily.
Sleep deprivation can be significantly damaging to your health. Sleep is involved in our growth and stress hormones, our immune system, appetite, breathing, blood pressure and cardiovascular health. Not getting enough sleep can result in many health problems, including decreased brain function, weakened immunity, high blood pressure, weight gain and an increased risk of heart disease and diabetes.
There are many ways in which you can optimise your sleep in order to improve your health. Make sure you do not sacrifice your sleep in order to socialise – rather, you should have a healthy balance. Nights out with friends are great, but you should make sure you will have time to catch up on sleep. You can also reduce stress before bedtime to make it easier for you to fall asleep by investing in great, comfortable bedding and removing blue light from the room at least an hour before you fall asleep. Blue light can stimulate the brain and make it more likely that you’ll be unable to sleep, so get rid of the phone and TV. Instead, read a book before going to bed. If you’re finding it really difficult to sleep, you can also try listening to meditation tapes and binaural beats in order to put your brain into a relaxation state. Certain smells such as chamomile, lavender and ylang-ylang have been proven to make it easier for people to go to sleep.
Exercise With A Friend
If you’ve got a friend who is also on a health kick, a great idea to socialise and work out together is to start exercising with each other. There are many positives to exercising with a friend – you will be able to keep each other company and keep each other accountable. This will make you less likely to quit. By socialising and exercising at the same time, you will be able to fulfil your body’s need for movement and your brain’s need to socialise all at once. Why not sign up for a fun dance class, HIIT class or pilates class with a close friend? This way, you will be able to achieve two objectives at once.
This factor has been saved for the end of the article because it is arguably the most important factor when it comes to balancing a good social life with health. The main reason why many people struggle with their health is the amount of junk food they end up consuming through convenience, especially if they have a rich social life. We often like to go for a meal or treat with our friends, as food is one of the best ways humans can communicate. However, restaurant food is often high in fat and sugar, and when consumed often can have a negative impact on your general health. This is especially true if you also often eat fast food for convenience.
High-fat, sugary foods can have many significant health risks. It can lead to clogged arteries, obesity and oral issues. However, it can also lead to oral health issues. This is especially true if you’re an older person with dentures or all on four implants. One of the best ways in which you can improve this is by limiting the number of harmful foods you eat (and also visiting a dentist often.)
However, there are many ways in which you can improve this. Inviting your friends over to cook with you instead and trying a new healthy recipe with fresh ingredients can be a great way to socialise whilst also eating well. If you do go out to a restaurant, you can pick a healthier option that won’t be as harmful to you. You could also try and carry around healthy, convenient snacks such as fruit, nuts and trail mix. This means when you’re busy and out and about, you will have a healthy snack available, as opposed to buying something quick and unhealthy.
Slightly changing your habits can be a great way to improve your health whilst not sacrificing your social life – take the first step to improve your life today!