9 DAILY HABITS THAT COULD SHORTEN YOUR LIFE

At what time you eat, how you watch TV, and several other hygiene habits that you think are harmless could actually cut your life short.

A bowl of ice cream.

MIDNIGHT SNACKING

According to research from the National Autonomous University of Mexico in Mexico City, your irresistible and most wanted late-night treat can possibly raise your risk of heart disease or diabetes. The study author Ruud Buijs, Ph.D. says, “This habit increases the risk of heart disease and diabetes because in time you will not only have high triglycerides levels after your night meal [but permanently].”

He explains that triglycerides are basically unhealthy blood fats that present in fatty tissue often nearby the stomach and it’s not easy to get rid of them. He suggests, “The best thing to do would be to eat as little as possible at night and keep about 11 to 12 hours between your evening meal and the next meal (breakfast).”

Cup of hot tea in front of a television screen.

BINGE-WATCHING

Binge-watching might be fun, but it can steal a precious sleep from you. According to a new study, young adults who spent most of their nights while binge-watching reported more exhaustion and more signs of insomnia, worse quality of sleep, and more attentiveness before going to sleep. The study even showed that the rate of poor sleep quality is much higher in binge-watchers as compared to those who don’t binge-watch. Ilene M. Rosen, MD, MSCE, president of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and professor of clinical medicine at Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, says, “Even one night of sleep loss can cause excessive daytime sleepiness, which makes you much more likely to be involved in a deadly motor vehicle crash or workplace accident.” She says that even just the loss of one-night sleep is dangerous. She explains, “Performance after sleep deprivation, even for one night, is similar to the performance of individuals who are intoxicated, so encouraging binge-watching oversleeping is like encouraging drunk driving.” She also adds that the danger of one night of sleep loss is made worse because most people are already chronically sleep-deprived. The American Academy of Sleep Medicine advises that adults sleep seven hours or more regularly to encourage optimal health.

Image of a salt filled jar.

YOUR DESIRE FOR SALT

If you love to add salt in everything you eat then you may be putting your health in danger. According to a study in the Journal of the American Medical Association, 9.5% of the entire diet-related deaths were caused by too much salty food.  The study uncovered that 45.4 percent of all deaths caused by heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes are linked to consuming either too little or too much of just ten groups of food. Too much salt can harm the heart or damage the kidneys and it’s the main cause of deaths that are related to diet.

Person washing hands on sink.

UNENTHUSIASTIC HAND WASHING

If you don’t wash your hands properly, it can leave you receptive to germs. Not just many foodborne sicknesses are developed by unwashed hands but according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, washing hands with soap and water could lessen the risk of diarrheal disease-associated death in half.

Woman smiling, displaying her teeth.

SKIPPING THE FLOSS

We all know already, that gum disease can raise the danger of dying but according to Saul Pressner, DMD, a dentist in New York City, flossing daily can increase sic years of life hope in healthy people.  He says, “It is hypothesized that by flossing one reduces the number of microorganisms in the mouth, therefore reducing oral inflammation.” He further continues, “Less inflamed gums are less likely to bleed and therefore fewer bacteria and viruses will enter the bloodstream from a healthy mouth.”

Man and woman lying on bed.

POOR PREPARATION IN BEDROOM

According to Donnica L. Moore, MD, President, Sapphire Women’s Health Group, practicing unsafe sex can kill you or at least can endanger your health severely. She says, “While HIV/AIDs is no longer considered a ‘death sentence,’ and it is treatable in many cases, it still causes a great risk to your health and projected lifespan.” She adds, “Other STD’s can be life-threatening as well, particularly hepatitis.” She suggests to use condoms except you are in an everlasting mutually monogamous relationship with a partner who is uninfected.

Woman biting her nails in stress.

NAIL BITING

Nail-biting is apparently not just an irritating little tic. Adam Friedman, MD, an associate professor of dermatology at George Washington School of Medicine and Hospital in Washington DC, explains that it can introduce both oral and skin bacteria. He says, “Here they can proliferate causing a tender, swollen paronychia (infection around the nail fold), a felon (strep infection of the finger pad—super painful), or even deeper infections involving the deeper finger structures.” He tells that in the appropriate context, the bacteria can enter into the bloodstream and may cause sepsis eventually which is a potentially life-threatening blood infection.

Woman examining her face in the mirror.

PIMPLE POPPING

Popping the pimples seems to be everyone’s favorite habit but it can be dangerous to your health on a serious level. Dr. Friedman says, “Picking, scratching, squeezing… pick your poison, all have the potential to disrupt an already damaged skin barrier in acne and allow aggressive and possibly invasive bacteria entry.” The groups of bacteria modified on the skin if there is acne on it. He says, “Many know that P. acnes, a gram-positive bacterium that loves to live in our hair follicles, is increased in acne but so is our good friend staph who just loves himself some skin.” Community-acquired Methicillin-Resistant Staph Aureus (MRSA) in fact has a real inclination for skin infections such as abscesses, furuncles (abscess of the hair follicle), and even carbuncles (nasty red, swollen, and painful cluster of boils). Dr. Friedman says, “Popping pimples is game time for MRSA as skin invasion can easily allow for an entry point to the rich blood vessel network, eyes, and even central nervous system. Not good.”

Pancake with sliced strawberry.

SKIPPING BREAKFAST

According to a Boston-based nutritionist Dana Greene, RD, breakfast is really the most important meal of the day. She says, “Breakfast regulates your appetite for the whole day so skipping it makes you eat more later in the day—setting you up for weight gain. And you know that being overweight or obese increases risk for heart disease and death.”

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