Everyone has bad habits, though some are much more obvious than others. Smoking, biting your nails, slouching, and some others come to mind first and foremost. However, there are plenty of other bad habits that people might not even know that they’re doing. Let’s take a look at five of those more subtle bad habits that you probably didn’t know you should be avoiding and what sort of physical harm they’re causing.
Eating Before Bed
As classic as the “midnight snack” is, eating too close to bedtime is not recommended. Food takes a few hours to fully digest, so it’s best to wait at least 3 hours after eating to lay down and drift off to sleep. Any sooner and you’ll likely feel the effects of eating too close to bedtime. It can cause indigestion, where undigested food and acid buildup make their way back up into your esophagus while you’re laying flat.
Did you know weight gain is more likely to occur with nighttime eating as well? Your metabolism slows while sleeping, causing your body to struggle to break down late-night snacks. You risk waking up with raised blood sugar levels, too. Of course, not everyone’s body is the same, but eating within the two-hour window of going to bed usually results in these common symptoms.
Not Getting Enough Sleep
As most would argue, sleep is simply the best. Especially when it’s quality sleep. Just how vital is healthy sleep hygiene? Well, a consistent lack of sleep can contribute to health issues such as stroke, coronary artery disease, mood instability, depression, and obesity. Getting less than seven hours of sleep nightly can result in a buildup of various health concerns over time.
To best prevent these from happening, it’s recommended to get at least 7-9 hours of sleep nightly. If you’re someone who struggles with insomnia, it would be a good idea to book an appointment with a specialist, or cycle through different helpful methods to improve your sleeping patterns.
Consuming Too Much Sodium
We all know that salt is an essential part of a healthy diet and a proper seasoning regime. It brings out the flavor of your dishes and just makes everything taste better. Did you know that too much sodium can put your health at risk?
The recommended daily intake of sodium for the average adult is 2,300mg. As a society, we tend to consume far more. An overconsumption of sodium can cause hypertension, heart disease, dehydration, and strokes. As important as sodium is to our health and well-being, it’s equally as dangerous to our health if not carefully monitored.
Brushing Your Teeth Too Much
Brushing your teeth can’t be bad for you, right? Generally speaking, no. If you brush too much, or too roughly, though? Then you can run into some uncomfortable dental problems. Our teeth’s enamel can easily break down over time with exercise and hard teeth brushing.
Dentists refer to the effects of overbrushing as toothbrush abrasion. Our teeth can become overly sensitive when brushing too much. Instead, you’ll want to make sure that you’re brushing with a soft-bristled toothbrush and sensitive toothpaste 2-3 times a day as it can greatly improve your dental health and keep irritation at bay.
Consuming Too Much Caffeine
These days, it’s clear that caffeine is what makes the world go round. Did you know that the overconsumption of caffeine does more harm than just simply making you feel wired? An overabundance of caffeine can increase feelings of anxiety, irritate your bladder, cause dehydration, and upset your stomach.
Though some caffeine is seen as healthy, clearly there’s a limit. It’s important to stay within the recommended daily intake of caffeine, under 400mg, which equates to around 4-5 cups of coffee. Surprisingly, the average American consumed less than half of that amount on a daily basis despite the common belief that many of us consume coffee around the clock.