It’s no secret that we all want to be healthier. But as any overworked, underpaid twenty-something knows only too well, following the latest wellness hacks and trends isn’t always easy. Or purse-friendly.

Luckily for you, we’ve got all the wellness advice you need. And best of all, it’ll be a list of fuss-free, straightforward, and purse-friendly wellness hacks.

You don’t need to splurge hundreds of dollars on green juices, new supplements and over-priced workouts. We’re all about simple, accessible health tips and we bet you are too.

Food should not be feared – it should be enjoyed. But with so much mixed, complex information out there, it can be difficult to know where to put your focus. The best thing to remember is one size never fits all and everyone’s needs are so different. Plus, these needs will change daily. It’s all about knowing what your unique body needs.

Here are five everyday wellness hacks every twenty-something can and should incorporate into their day-to-day life.

1. Eat breakfast every morning…if you can.

If you start your day off on the right foot, then whatever the day throws at you, at least you have given your body and brain the fuel it needs.

Ditch all the sugar. You want your breakfast plate to include both protein (eggs, Greek yogurt) and fat (nuts, seeds). Especially because it’s your first meal. This is important because it helps to balance blood sugar and regulate energy throughout the day. Don’t usually have time for breakfast? Prep it all the night before – you could make overnight oats or boiled eggs.

Related: Sausage, Egg, and Veggie Breakfast Casserole

2. Eat a balanced plate for every meal.

There are a few elements that you want to try and include with every meal to make sure you’re on the right track:

  • Protein (meat, fish, pulses)
  • Fat (nuts, seeds, olive oil)
  • Carbohydrates (wholegrains, any vegetables, but some starchy vegetables in particular, such as sweet potato)

It can be easier to miss out on whole food groups than you think. Take avocado on toast for instance. It’s all over Instagram right? But as a meal, it contains barely any protein. It needs to be a more balanced option and you could do this by adding a sliced boiled egg, smoked salmon or edamame beans.

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3. Don’t forget your micronutrients.

A recent campaign from the NHS in the UK said to “forget five a day, eat ten portions of fruit and vegetables a day.” This might seem ambitious, but it’s something to aim for. But what constitutes as a portion? Basically, a portion is any handful of vegetables: 1 apple, 1 small banana and so on.

Just remember that the majority of these should be vegetables. Eat the rainbow. Colors equals more nutrients.

4. Bump up your fiber.

There is a lot more research being done into why the gut is one of the most important parts of the human body. And there are actually particular foods you can eat daily for healthy gut function. These include:

  • Wholegrains (oats, rice)
  • Pulses (chickpeas, kidney beans, lentils)

The gut is a key organ in the body that helps with the elimination of toxins. We need it to function really well.

5. Get off the diet train.

I bet every single one of you reading this has been on at least one mad diet. But if there is one thing I could tell my younger self it would be this: stop the obsession with dieting. Instead, try to learn what your body needs.

Everybody is different. Nutrition is not an exact science. There’s no magical formula. So experiment. Keeping a food diary is a great idea because you can note down how different foods make you feel. It’s also critical to understanding the effects food has on your body and creates a concious awareness of food intake and eating patterns.

Here are a few things you can track in your journal:

  • Time: Be specific – the time you eat is as important as what you eat.
  • Amounts: Again, be specific – was it one teaspoon of almond butter or one tablespoon?
  • Be thorough: Include drinks, vitamins/supplements, and medications. This is especally important for the times when you skip these, because you can track how you feel without them.
  • Feelings: Your energy and stress leels, emotions, etc. Pay attention – as you clean up and detoxify your body better, you will also experience the release of old negative emotions.

You can then implement changes into your daily life and get back to enjoying food for what it is.

If writing this article has taught me anything, it’s this: wellness hacks start with real food.

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