How do you prioritise your health? Perhaps the ever-racing lifestyle in Australia have you leaving your ‘me time’ for another day that never really comes. Read on below for some habits from around the globe that are said to increase overall health and well-being.

The Siesta

Have you ever hit that afternoon slump where all you want to do is curl up under your desk with a fluffy pillow to count sheep? If so, it’s likely you’ll love a trip to beautiful Spain – the country where the modern-day siesta originates. The Spanish word ‘siesta’ derives from the Latin word hora sexta, which means ‘the sixth hour’. When noon hits, the Spaniards head home for a few hours to get some rest to replenish energy levels, reduce anxiety, and increase cardiovascular health.

As Spain records high temperatures, one of the most traditional reasons for the siesta is to escape the midday heat. This is especially true for farmers and other outdoor workers and is argued to have been in place for thousands of years. Many businesses and shops once closed down for a couple of hours as well, but recent 2016 laws set the working day to finish at six as opposed to seven, making siestas harder for business owners.

Japanese Hot Springs

What with its frequent seismic activity, the stunning Japanese landscape lends itself to more than 3,000 hot springs. These hot springs, otherwise known as onsens, are steeped in many myths and legends, especially when it comes to each spring’s discovery. It has been said that some of the most beautiful and remote springs were discovered when wounded animals led their hunters to the toasty waters. Nowadays, many hot springs have statues erected to pay homage to the animal that led to the spring’s detection.

In 552 AD, the rise of Buddhism in Japan helped solidify the popularity of hot springs, as many Buddhists would take to the waters to purify their bodies and souls. Ever since the hot springs have frequently soothed both locals and visitors, and today’s foreign travellers may be surprised to learn that it is customary to bathe naked in many communal springs. Despite any cultural shock, bathing in these waters can bring about a variety of health benefits. Salt, calcium, and magnesium pools are known to rectify skin ailments and disease, gynaecological disorders, and muscle and joint pain, while alkaline pools are known to beautify the skin. Carbonated iron springs and melanterite springs are said to replenish the body’s iron levels as well.

Chinese Tea Drinking

While drinking tea is a common practice in the lives of many Australians, it is interesting to learn the ancient and modern-day importance of Chinese tea drinking. It is believed that the origin of tea stems back to the Chinese Emperor Shen Nong, who, in 2737 BC, discovered its delicious taste when a few leaves from a tree fell into his boiling water. This legend is then said to have led onto experimentation of different types of teas and its health benefits. Nowadays, the Chinese still partake in tea ceremonies and frequent tea houses to reconnect with relatives and friends.

Red, oolong, black, flower and white are some of the most popular types of tea. Oolong tea, in particular, is filled with antioxidants and helps soothe stomach issues, and fermented tea is considered wonderful for a woman’s digestive system. Quality teas can even work on the central nervous and cardiovascular system by working as muscle relaxants. They can also inhibit bacterial growth to improve the immune system, prevent cancer, and even slow aging.

Our Backyard

While it may take a plane ticket to truly immerse yourself in the healthy lifestyle habits from other countries, there’s no reason why you can’t implement a version of your own in day-to-day life. Brew some relaxing chamomile tea and sip on it as you soak in a warm bath scattered with magnesium bath flakes. Enjoy the nourishing benefits of SkinB5’s Skin Purifying Mask before cleansing with the Acne Control Cleansing Mousse and moisturising with the Acne Control Moisturiser. When it’s bed time, relax with a good read before turning out all lights to help ensure an undisturbed sleep.