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10 Personal Hygiene Mistakes You Are Probably Making

10 Personal Hygiene Mistakes You Are Probably Making

Many of us fall into routines with our hygiene habits. The hard pill to swallow is that most of us are doing it wrong. Many of the things we think we know, or grew up assuming, are in fact hurting our health. This list will open your eyes to better hygiene tips that will improve the health and quality of your life.

1. Over-bathing

A clean body can breathe. The obvious appeal is removing dirt, scum, bacteria, and other environmental extras that can cause sicknesses and deterioration. The other reason to bathe often is to remove old skin. This is the cleanest way to remove dead skin and rejuvenate pores. Don’t wait until your odor signals the need to shower. Do keep in mind though that over-bathing can lead to infections and irritation too. The dry and open areas from washing too much can increase the chances of bacteria getting deeper into your skin.The human body is home to some 1,000 species of bacteria. There are more germs on your body than people in the United States.

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2. Brush and floss after every meal

The minimum habit one should form when it comes to oral hygiene is to brush and floss after every meal. You should clean your teeth two to three times a day at 60 second intervals to give you the healthy mouth you need.

3. Don’t use your hands to wipe off sweat

For all of us gym rats, it is a bad habit to reach up and wipe with the same thing that has touched over a thousand different bacteria in the previous hour. Using a small towel, or even grabbing your shirt in a quick attempt to dry off, will keep you safer from sicknesses.

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4. Vacuuming

The Norwalk virus, or Norovirus, (the virus that causes the stomach flu) can survive on an uncleaned carpet for a month or more. That said, regular vacuums won’t be able to kill the bacteria that lead to the most common and detrimental health problems. Getting your carpets cleaned professionally or with a steam cleaner will give you the satisfactory clean that will eliminate most bacteria.

5. Sharing nail clippers

This one seems pretty obvious, but most families and friends do this regularly without thinking of the negative repercussions. Skin breaks or gets cut often when trimming nails, opening the door to bacteria and dirt.

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6. Save the germs!

A study of over 11,000 children determined that an overly hygienic environment increases the risk of eczema and asthma. Just like bathing too often can create a problem, using sanitizer often will also dry and crack the skin and leave it vulnerable to bacteria.

7. Urine is good

Urea, a key chemical in urine, is known to kill fungi and bacteria. But don’t use this as an excuse to not wash your hands after relieving yourself. Many creams at the store contain this and can help improve skin quality.

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8. Using a remote

University of Arizona researchers determined that television remotes are the worst carriers of bacteria in hospital rooms, worse even than toilet handles. Remotes spread antibiotic-resistant Staphylococcus, which contributes to the 90,000 annual deaths from infections acquired in hospitals.

9. Peeing in urinals

If you are getting splashed or splashing the ground, you are doing it wrong! Experts say that if you use a urinal, get close and aim low. Don’t worry about the awkward water splashing noise, that’s why it is there.

10. Using cloth diapers

Research performed by the University of Arizona concluded that washing just one load of underwear in the washing machine can transmit 100 million E. coli into the water, which can then transfer over the current and following load. Many parents make the decision based off multiple factors to go with cloth diapers but could ultimately be hurting their family members in the long run if they aren’t cleaning them properly.

Featured photo credit: Algae and bacteria in Scanning Electron Microscope, magnification 5000x/SecretDisc via upload.wikimedia.org

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Last Updated on August 12, 2019

12 Best Foods That Improve Memory and Brain Health

12 Best Foods That Improve Memory and Brain Health

Nutrition plays a vital role in brain function and staying sharp into the golden years. Personally, my husband is going through medical school, which is like a daily mental marathon. Like any good wife, I am always looking for things that will boost his memory fortitude so he does his best in school.

But you don’t have to be a med student to appreciate better brainiac brilliance. If you combine certain foods with good hydration, proper sleep and exercise, you may just rival Einstein and have a great memory in no time.

I’m going to reveal the list of foods coming out of the kitchen that can improve your memory and make you smarter.

Here are 12 best brain foods that improve memory and brain power:

1. Nuts

The American Journal of Epidemiology published a study linking higher intakes of vitamin E with the prevention on cognitive decline.[1]

Nuts like walnuts and almonds (along with other great foods like avocados) are a great source of vitamin E.

Cashews and sunflower seeds also contain an amino acid that reduces stress by boosting serotonin levels.

Walnuts even resemble the brain, just in case you forget the correlation, and are a great source of omega 3 fatty acids, which also improve your mental magnitude.

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2. Blueberries

Shown in studies at Tuffs University to benefit both short-term memory and coordination, blueberries pack quite a punch in a tiny blue package.[2]

When compared to other fruits and veggies, blueberries were found to have the highest amount of antioxidants (especially flavonoids), but strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries are also full of brain benefits.

3. Tomatoes

Tomatoes are packed full of the antioxidant lycopene, which has shown to help protect against free-radical damage most notably seen in dementia patients.

4. Broccoli

While all green veggies are important and rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, broccoli is a superfood even among these healthy choices.

Since your brain uses so much fuel (it’s only 3% of your body weight but uses up to 17% of your energy), it is more vulnerable to free-radical damage and antioxidants help eliminate this threat.

Broccoli is packed full of antioxidants, is well-known as a powerful cancer fighter and is also full of vitamin K, which is known to enhance cognitive function.

5. Foods Rich in Essential Fatty Acids

Your brain is the fattest organ (not counting the skin) in the human body, and is composed of 60% fat. That means that your brain needs essential fatty acids like DHA and EPA to repair and build up synapses associated with memory.

The body does not naturally produce essential fatty acids so we must get them in our diet.

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Eggs, flax, and oily fish like salmon, sardines, mackerel and herring are great natural sources of these powerful fatty acids. Eggs also contain choline, which is a necessary building block for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, to help you recall information and concentrate.

6. Soy

Soy, along with many other whole foods mentioned here, are full of proteins that trigger neurotransmitters associated with memory.

Soy protein isolate is a concentrated form of the protein that can be found in powder, liquid, or supplement form.

Soy is valuable for improving memory and mental flexibility, so pour soy milk over your cereal and enjoy the benefits.

7. Dark Chocolate

When it comes to chocolate, the darker the better. Try to aim for at least 70% cocoa. This yummy desert is rich in flavanol antioxidants which increase blood flow to the brain and shield brain cells from aging.

Take a look at this article if you want to know more benefits of dark chocolate: 15 Surprising and Science-Backed Health Effects of Dark Chocolate

8. Foods Rich in Vitamins: B vitamins, Folic Acid, Iron

Some great foods to obtain brain-boosting B vitamins, folic acid and iron are kale, chard, spinach and other dark leafy greens.

B6, B12 and folic acid can reduce levels of homocysteine in the blood. Homocysteine increases are found in patients with cognitive impairment like Alzheimer’s, and high risk of stroke.

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Studies showed when a group of elderly patients with mild cognitive impairment were given high doses of B6, B12, and folic acid, there was significant reduction in brain shrinkage compared to a similar placebo group.[3]

Other sources of B vitamins are liver, eggs, soybeans, lentils and green beans. Iron also helps accelerate brain function by carrying oxygen. If your brain doesn’t get enough oxygen, it can slow down and people can experience difficulty concentrating, diminished intellect, and a shorter attention span.

To get more iron in your diet, eat lean meats, beans, and iron-fortified cereals. Vitamin C helps in iron absorption, so don’t forget the fruits!

9. Foods Rich in Zinc

Zinc has constantly demonstrated its importance as a powerful nutrient in memory building and thinking. This mineral regulates communications between neurons and the hippocampus.

Zinc is deposited within nerve cells, with the highest concentrations found in the hippocampus, the part of the brain responsible for higher learning function and memory.

Some great sources of zinc are pumpkin seeds, liver, nuts, and peas.

10. Gingko Biloba

This herb has been utilized for centuries in eastern culture and is best known for its memory boosting brawn.

It can increase blood flow in the brain by dilating vessels, increasing oxygen supply and removing free radicals.

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However, don’t expect results overnight: this may take a few weeks to build up in your system before you see improvements.

11. Green and Black Tea

Studies have shown that both green and black tea prevent the breakdown of acetylcholine—a key chemical involved in memory and lacking in Alzheimer’s patients.

Both teas appear to have the same affect on Alzheimer’s disease as many drugs utilized to combat the illness, but green tea wins out as its affects last a full week versus black tea which only lasts the day.

Find out more about green tea here: 11 Health Benefits of Green Tea (+ How to Drink It for Maximum Benefits)

12. Sage and Rosemary

Both of these powerful herbs have been shown to increase memory and mental clarity, and alleviate mental fatigue in studies.

Try to enjoy these savory herbs in your favorite dishes.

When it comes to mental magnitude, eating smart can really make you smarter. Try to implement more of these readily available nutrients and see just how brainy you can be!

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Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

Reference

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