By Casey Frye, CCNN Writer
When it comes to basic health, there’s no denying the importance of a sweaty workout. However, physical fitness is only half the battle. Maintaining a proper diet is just as important for your health as any exercise regimen is. Good nutrition leads to better energy levels, deeper sleep, and clearer skin!
How can our moods be significantly improved by eating right? Well, a recent study asked 300 young adults to keep track of their meals in a journal for three straight weeks. The participants also had to monitor their emotional state and other psychological information. As it turns out, the volunteers who ate higher amounts of fruits and vegetables often reported more energy, inner peace, and overall happiness. Furthermore, a separate study found that people who ate more fruits and vegetables had increased mental well-being!
If that doesn’t motivate you to ditch greasy food, know this: healthy eating makes sleeping easier. Okay, sleeping isn’t exactly hard to do, but addictive gadgets and late-night study sessions are increasingly interrupting our sleep cycles. In fact, anywhere from 50-70 million Americans suffer from some sort of sleeping disorder. Based on the results of one study, these sleep-deprived citizens could definitely use some produce before hitting the hay. Specifically, the study found that participants who ate a kiwi one hour before sleep over a four-week period fell asleep faster, longer, and deeper than those that didn’t. Other foods like fish, leafy greens, and nuts have also been linked to a boost in sleep quality.
Finally, eating right can fight acne and keep your skin looking its best. One experiment found that photographs of individuals who ate tons of produce were rated as more “easy on the eyes” compared to photos of people with suntans. A separate research study found that people who increased their daily fruit and veggie servings were also rated similarly when compared to participants who didn’t eat as many!
So remember, eating healthy is not just about trying to shed as many pounds as possible. There are numerous health benefits to eliminating junk from your diet and focusing on a balanced nutrition.
Featured image courtesy of Steven Depolo on Flickr. Image of healthy skin courtesy of the half-blood prince on Flickr.