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5 Tips for Happiness by Libby Limon, Yoga Teacher and Nutritionist.

If I ever have periods of not feeling myself, feeling low, unmotivated and a little depressed then I automatically have two alarm bells that go off in my head. Am I eating properly and have I taken enough exercise?

With these two mantras I know that I can keep myself on track which ultimately leads to a much happier me. Nutritionist and Honestly Healthy Hero Libby Limon gives us a few more tips on why keeping ourselves happy means keeping ourselves healthy!

Exercise, but not too much…. Exercise is a great mood booster, naturally releasing feel good endorphins, positive emotions of wellbeing and achievement. However over-exercising can become a stress leading to injury, lowered immunity and gut dysfunction.  Keep as active as you can throughout the day, take the stairs, get off the bus a stop early etc. Combine with H.I.I.T classes and strength-building resistance exercise such as yoga, a few days a week.

Eat regular balance meals ……of high quality lean protein, complex carbohydrates including plenty of vegetables and healthy fats. Poor dietary habits can be a physical stress to our bodies, upsetting our blood sugar balance, leading to low energy, moods, cravings and poor sleep.

Social Network – A study using large scale Framingham Heart data showed that if we are more likely to be happy if we surround ourselves with others that are also happy.  It has also been reported that the number of photographs of your social network in your home can be a good indicator of your happiness.

Sunshine  - There is no doubt that we associate happiness with light, and sadness with darkness.  Being outside in the sunshine can lift your mood, whatever the temperature.  30mins a day of sunshine, maybe just a lunch hour walk, can help elevate mood and also vitamin D production, essential for bone health, overall immunity and optimal wellbeing.

Overall, Happiness comes from within, not from external sources or objects. Yogis practice non-attachment, not only to the world but also from your ego, which will take you on a rollercoaster of highs and lows. Letting go and learning to connect with you 'true self' can really lead to inner happiness. Try some meditation or yoga to start the journey.

Eckhart Tolle's book, 'A New Earth: Create a Better Life' is a great easy read on the subject. 

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