The stress that comes with being a Nigerian is enough reason to practice habits to maintain a healthy lifestyle in Nigeria. Habits make up who we are and how we live our lives. As the word of the great buddha says, “drop by drop is the water pot filled.” Same way, our habits contribute to our life.
In this article, we’d be highlighting habits that help to maintain a happy and healthy lifestyle in Nigeria.
Let’s get straight to business.
7 Habits to Practice to Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle in Nigeria
Drinking water is a longtime tradition that still works drinking water. Water is responsible for about 60 percent of our total body weight and performs many crucial functions. Some of the functions include essential functions such as regulating most temperature, healthy body cells, maintaining blood volume, lubricating and cushioning joints, eliminating toxins, and maintaining blood pressure.
Your body needs plenty of fluid to eliminate toxins and keep it in good shape. Do not wait till you are dehydrated before you drink water. Always have a bottle of water near you and drink it periodically. Not having enough water will stop the body from functioning optimally.
On average, you need at least eight glasses of water per day for the body to function correctly. Hence, drinking water regularly will help you maintain a healthy lifestyle in Nigeria.
While this nation’s state has forced many to take up multiple jobs, you still have to create enough time to sleep. Nigerians often brag about their hustling spirit and sometimes see sleeping as a form of laziness.
However, this is a lie. Get enough sleep. Research shows that, on average, we need 8hrs of sleep. While this might be difficult to accomplish in Nigeria, especially for those staying in cities like Lagos, Port-Harcourt try to catch as enough sleep as possible.
Sleeping is an opportunity for your body to repair itself, and lack of sleep might affect your ability to think logically, concentrate. Generally, lack of sleep slows you down. Deep and satisfying sleep is one of those things that will make you look younger and healthier. It also increases your immune function.
Avoid taking alcohol or energy drinks once it is 6 pm; this will make it easier for you to sleep. Try to take out anything that might cause a distinction, sleep in a properly darkened room. Switch off the light. I know some of us to have a problem with this, but leaving the light on can impair the secretion of melatonin- a hormone usually secreted at night. It improved skin elasticity, muscle strength and boost immunity.
Finally, try to have a sleep pattern, create a time when you retire to bed.
Read also: How to sleep well and enough as a Nigerian
In this aspect, some Nigerians are getting it right, but most aren’t.
You can swallow heavy wraps of pounded yam at 10 pm, but you find it challenging to go for a road walk, “you are not doing well oo.”
To maintain a healthy lifestyle in Nigeria, you cannot overemphasize the importance of regular exercise. It would be best if you exercised regularly, irrespective of how tight your schedule is. A gentle exercise like going up and down the stairs will help stimulate blood and heart circulation, help control cholesterol levels and boost your immune system.
Luckily enough, you do not have to leave the confines of your home before you can exercise. You can download apps that will help you achieve that.
Stop bad habits
Working to maintain a healthy lifestyle in Nigeria requires you to put away some habits.
The first is to stop skipping breakfast. Unfortunately, this has become a norm among Nigerians; most people wouldn’t eat until 11 am. It shouldn’t be so. Always eat your breakfast, it is the most important meal of the day.
Eating breakfast helps to keep your sugar level constant. It makes you less likely to be craving sugary snacks, which is a blessing in the long run.
Another habit that you should put away is smoking and drinking alcohol. Taking alcohol denies the body of essential nutrients.
Research has shown that the heart rate increases by 20 beats per minute per cigarette stick consumption. Cigarette intake causes lung problems by increasing the carbon monoxide content in the blood. Hence, this affects the circulatory system and will take almost 6hrs to return to normal after taking a cigarette stick.
Apart from the several lung diseases caused by smoking, it also darkens the lips and makes the skin age faster.
Read also: 10 Unhealthy habits to consciously avoid as a Nigerian
Avoid unnecessary stress
As a Nigerian, you are already stressed. The stress of getting daily bread, traffic, dealing with unruly behavior is enough to drive an average mind crazy. As a Nigerian who values his/her health, learn to avoid unnecessary stress.
Learn to accept the fact you can’t do everything all by yourself. Ask for assistance, delegate duties. If you can afford it, get a house to help ease the stress. If not, you can ask people around you for help.
You aren’t superhuman; always put this at the back of your mind. When you are stressed, your body produces hormones that can cause brain damage, nervous breakdown, and chronic fatigue. Learn to say no without feeling guilty.
In Nigeria, it is not unusual to see someone who works 12hrs a day on weekdays still spend the whole of the weekend in religious houses under the guise of doing one or committee meeting or the other. No, don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying you should not practice your religion. It won’t be very reasonable of anyone to say that.
However, what I’m saying is that you should consider your health. Learn to reject/avoid extra responsibilities that might put a strain on your health.
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Increase Fruit Intake
Without a doubt, the harsh economy has forced many not to pay attention to the classes of food they eat. We mostly consume carbohydrates as this is readily cheap food. However, it shouldn’t be so. Try to take fruits, with as little as N100 a day you can get enough fruits.
The benefits of taking fruit are endless. Fruits like Watermelon, Carrots, Mangoes and African pear helps to increase the lung functions and reduce cholesterol.
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Be calming down
While this might sound satirical, it is the truth; it helps maintain a healthy lifestyle in Nigeria. Learn to ignore things. It isn’t all unpleasant things that you respond to.
We, as Nigerians, generally love to shout. There is a power outage, the next thing we do is scream and curse, someone drives roughly, and we respond with “thunder fire you.”
Unending shouting isn’t good for the health. I realized this one day when I shouted, as usual, then suddenly I started vibrating. Something terrible could have happened, but I guess I was lucky; you may not be. Try to ignore things.
Remember to Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle in Nigeria
Health is wealth; we all should do everything to ensure our health is in good shape. This boils down to working to maintain a healthy lifestyle in Nigeria.
I hope you’ve learned a thing or two from this article and would live a better, healthier lifestyle.
Do you want more insights on how to care for yourself as a Nigerian? Join our WhatsApp Community, we would be glad to have you.
Benjamin Ajayi is a Penultimate Microbiology Student at the University of Ibadan. He is an eclectic content writer, with adept creativity in mobilizing thoughts to words. Aside from being a Content Writer, he’s also a UX Designer and a cleaner environment enthusiast.
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