Good health is an important part of living a long, happy life. Our modern lives often work against our efforts to stay fit and get healthy. Hectic schedules can make it difficult to plan meals and exercise sessions. We tend to spend more time in front of electronic devices and computers while at work or at home.

You don’t have to make dramatic changes to see improvement. You can get started by changing a little bit, one day at a time. Here are 5 easy methods you can use to get fit with the help of Mother Nature.

  • Get Enough Sunlight Each Day

We often hear about the dangers of excessive sunlight. Did you know that sun exposure can be good for you? The key is knowing how much exposure is safe and beneficial.

Getting out in the sun helps your body produce vitamin D. Research conducted at Larkin Hospital in Florida found a positive connection between vitamin D and insulin production.

The sun can boost your immune system. Studies have shown that sunlight can help lower the risk of developing kidney cancer. It also lowers blood pressure by widening vessels.

It’s important to note that this doesn’t mean you should go out in the sun for long periods with no protection. Excessive sun exposure can increase your risk of skin cancer. You should aim for 10 to 30 minutes of sunlight several times each week.  People with darker skin tone may need a little longer while those with sensitive skin may require less.

  • Enjoy Nature While You Workout

Working out at home can get boring quickly. You can let nature be your motivation by trying exercises that you can do outside. A stroll through a park is far more enticing than running on a treadmill. You can also try different activities, like bicycle riding, jogging, or sports.

If you live near a recreational waterway and feel adventurous, you could try kayaking or rowing. Many communities have local rowing clubs or associations that can help you learn or access equipment.

Your workout session doesn’t have to be long. Taking a quick walk outside while on break or during lunch hour can have significant benefits.

  • Grow Your Own Food at Home

Buying snacks at the store can be unhealthy and expensive. Instead, you can grow your own food. The closer to the source a food item is, the healthier it tends to be. Anything you can grow and harvest yourself is going to be more nutritious than boxed dinners or overly processed snacks.

If you don’t have a lot of space for a garden, you can get creative. Squeeze a few plants in anywhere you have soil or install a planter box on the porch or a fence. You can even put one inside next to a window. Some companies manufacture indoor garden kits that include everything you need to grow herbs and vegetables. If you do have the room but don’t have the right weather then technology might be able to help you. Advances in solar powered gardening means you can often grow plants year round in climate controlled greenhouses. Talk to your local electrician and see if they can help.

  • Trade Bad Habits for Good Ones

If you have bad habits, try trading them out for good ones. For example, if you tend to snack during a certain time of day, pick up a new activity. Instead of watching TV and eating fatty foods after work, you could go outside and do some landscaping or take a walk.

The same goes for excessive drinking or smoking. You should figure out what triggers the habit to determine how to stop it and replace it with something healthy. This isn’t an easy process, but it is one that can have a profound impact on your overall wellbeing.

  • Drink Enough Water Daily

The human body consists of approximately 60% water. We need it to survive. Many people do not get enough each day, and that can have a negative effect on health.

Health authorities usually suggest eight 8-ounce glasses daily. That comes to about 2 liters or a half gallon. This should be the bare minimum that you drink every 24 hours.

Water balances internal fluids and helps control calorie intake. It also energizes muscles, keeps skin clear of blemishes, and flushes toxins from the body.

Remember, you should drink the recommended quantity of clear water. Sugary beverages like soda pop do not count. While some natural fruit juices may qualify, anything artificial or overly sweetened does not. You can also round out your water intake with vegetables like cucumbers, celery, and green peppers.

Nature can improve mental and physical health. All it takes is a few small changes to get started.