7 pretty important things you can improve in just 7 minutes

Here are seven things that could be improved with just seven minutes of your precious time.

1. Life expectancy

A study by Iowa State University found that people who ran for 51 minutes a week – just over seven minutes a day – had a 45% lower risk of death from heart disease or stroke than non-runners.

If that’s not enough, running for seven minutes a day apparently gives you a 30% lower risk of death from all causes and makes you live for an average three years longer.

2. Brain power

Recently experts at the Alzheimer’s Association international conference in Copenhagen announced that crosswords and card games can boost brain power and prevent dementia. A few months ago, the University of Toronto had also concluded the same.

So find an achievable-in-seven-minutes crossword and get cracking.

3. Eyesight

The advice from optical experts is that if you work in front of a computer, you should follow the 20-20-20 rule: every 20 minutes, look 20ft away from your screen for at least 20 seconds. It works out to about seven minutes of looking away from your screen per working (or studying) day.

Those seven minutes will reduce eye strain, help avoid painful dry eyes and banish tension headaches.

4. Skin

A man in a shower
(Ordinary Guy/Flickr)

The average woman takes seven minutes 39 seconds in the shower apparently. Use a body brush during these vital minutes to remove dead skin cells and encourage your circulation and lymphatic system (which removes body toxins).

You could also turn the hot tap to cold for 30 seconds to boost skin glow and help boost metabolism.

5. Muscle tone

Last year, the American College of Sports Medicine’s Health & Fitness Journal published a hugely popular guide called the High-intensity Circuit Training Using Body Weight: Maximum Results With Minimal Investment.

Basically, it’s 12 brilliantly easy-to-follow exercises (think old-school Jumping Jacks) that you can do in your living room, in just seven minutes, and still gain the same benefits as a sweaty hour in the gym.

6. Stress levels

Stress has been linked a multitude of health issues, from insomnia to cancer and even stroke. Help beat it with some deep breathing for seven minutes. Breathe in slowly to the count of seven seconds, hold, then breathe out for eight to 10 seconds and repeat. It brings a sense of calm and steadies a racing pulse.

7. Weight

A survey earlier this year found that most of us spend just seven minutes and 20 seconds eating breakfast, Being short on time doesn’t have to mean resorting to fast-food style breakfasts of croissants. Porridge, the ultimate low-fat, fibre-packed start to the day, needs just two minutes in the microwave and one minute to cool down.

That leaves a blissful four minutes and 20 seconds to eat.

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