With chronic disease at it’s all time high, everyone is looking for new ways to get healthy.
While I totally agree, we should all be looking for ways to keep ourselves in peak health, many people are searching for that “quick fix”. “Try this 7 day raw juice fast to experience vibrant health”, “Embark on this 20 day cleanse to become the healthiest version of you!”.
Many of these programs exist today, promising that their program will help you leap into optimal health! Here’s the thing, there is no program on this earth where you can do something for 20-30 days and suddenly allow you to experience optimal health.
Optimal health is like a delicate flower, it must be nourished and tended to daily to be able to flourish! Every single day we must implement practices that nourish our health, with the goal that in time, we will begin to feel what it is like to be healthy!
How might you go about doing this you ask? Well, read on, as below I’ll explain 5 practices you can be doing every single day to harbour health!
Yes, I know, this seems too simple to be true, however movement is something that many people have lost in their lives and could potentially have the biggest impact on our health! We’re glued to the couch/bed watching our favorite TV series or working a job that requires us to sit at a desk for 8 hours. Along with this, people are no longer exercising, or simply enjoying activities that involve movement like walking, biking, or swimming!
Here’s something to consider; if we look at the fact that in the last 10 years, chronic disease has experienced a dramatic increase, and at the same time, if you yourself simply think about how many times nowadays you see kids playing outside anymore, or adults riding bikes, or running, or just simply out for a walk, you may find that the rise in chronic disease has correlated to the fall in activity!
Movement stimulates our metabolism, which is our furnace to burn fuel (body fat) and too create fire (energy). Movement also stimulates blood flow which is important because if your blood is flowing better, your body will be delivering oxygen/nutrients more optimally throughout the entire body, resulting in better energy/overall health for you!
Another intriguing point to add about movement is that it stimulates lymph flow! The lymphatic system is one part of our bodies detoxification mechanism. It is basically a sewage system, collecting waste from around the entire body. Here’s the interesting part, lymph fluid only flows based upon our movement! So, if we’re not moving, then one of our most important detox systems won’t be working properly, and what does that mean for us? Toxins will remain in the body, contributing to poor health!
Drink More Water!
If you haven’t heard it a thousand and one times before, our bodies are made of approximately 60% water! This means we are more water beings than anything else! Just as any other water in the world, it can become polluted, acidic, or can be depleted! This makes it of utmost importance to constantly be replenishing the body with new, fresh water! As well, we are constantly losing water through sweat and bodily functions, driving home the aforementioned point!
Aside to this, being that water is more than half of the body, it would only make sense that water is essential in several, if not all body processes and functions. In fact, here’s a list of some of the vital roles of water:
Cellular health and function
Organ health and function
Joint/spinal cord lubrication for protection
Supports temperature regulation in the body
The list could go on and on, however you can see the vital importance of keeping up on your H2o!
Eat Whole Foods!
Our world has become adulterated…Including our food! Everything enhanced, made to last longer, taste better, and look better. However, this has made such a large percentage of purchasable foods today refined and far from its natural state! In my opinion, this is likely one of the biggest influencers of poor health today in the Western world.
While the above points are true, you always have a choice when it comes to what you put in your mouth! Instead of consuming chemical and additive laden foods such as boxed goods, canned foods, packaged items, cookies, candies, pre-made foods etc. choose to consume clean animal/plant-based proteins, fruits, vegetables, complex starches, and healthy fats!
Eating in this way provides your body with a better nutrient yield, meaning you are driving in the nutrients needed to fuel all body processes, and keeps your body mostly free of harmful chemicals/additives from processed foods!
Be Mindful & Focus on Positive Thoughts!
I would say much of our society has become mindless! What I mean by this is we are never focused on the moment at hand! We’re always looking ahead at what’s to come, or behind at what we’ve done!
Mahatma Gandhi once said, “If you worry about yesterday’s failures, then today’s successes will be few. The future depends on what we do in the present”.
This couldn’t be truer. The more time you spend thinking about the past, the less time and energy you will have to put into what you do now! Also, the more time you spend dreaming about the future, the less time and energy you will have to act today to make that future happen!
Mindfulness and staying present are powerful tools that could enable you to gain a deeper understanding and awareness of what you need for better health and how to implement it!
Do Not Over Stimulate!
Another point about our current Western society is that we’re always stimulated! Whether it’s by our phones/electronic devices stimulating our brains and inhibiting certain actions, or by the excessive amounts of caffeine & other stimulants we consume to give us that extra boost, or the volatile relationships we are in that keep us on edge or emotionally charged.
All this negative stimulation can have a very negative impact on our health if taken out of moderation! As an example, all the aforementioned points stimulate our adrenals glands, the glands responsible for taking care of our stress response. Once these glands become over-stimulated, they can experience fatigue, potentially leading to poor energy, lack of sleep, depression, anxiety, increased inflammation, poor thyroid health & more!
So, in closing, bring your health back to the basics! Don’t try to over complicate such a delicate and beautiful process that is our body’s symphony!
Remember that our health is like a delicate flower that must be nourished and taken care of every day, not just for that trendy detox program or fitness bootcamp!
Incorporate these simple health modalities to strive towards lasting optimal health!
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Keep on living holistic,
Michael Sharp, CNP, NNCP.
DISCLAIMER: The information listed above is for educational purposes and discussion of general health information only. The information, opinions, ideas, and suggestions listed above are in no way intended to diagnose disease/health issues or act as a treatment for disease/health issues and is not to act as a substitute for medical advice from your doctor. Before taking part in any natural or alternative approach to health, these approaches should be reviewed by your doctor for approval especially if there are existing health conditions and if prescribed and or pharmaceutical medication is being taken due to the potential for interactions between medications and any natural approaches to health.