Rebalancing Your Life: Tips for Healthy Living
At this time of the year we are all looking at our lives; rebalancing our investment s, gathering information for our tax returns, etc. How about rebalancing our health?
Make an intention to start with simple activities, like walking or yoga. Start with 10 minutes a day and gradually increase. It will help blood sugar levels and reduce tension.
Below are some ways I have successfully rebalanced my health:
1- Eat a rainbow of whole foods: Whole foods are foods that have not been processed or refined and are free from additives or other artificial substances. These foods are as close to nature as possible. TIP: I try to eat lots of colorful fruits and vegetables.
2- Read food labels: I read labels on everything at the grocery store and if there are more than 5 ingredients or if I can’t pronounce the ingredients, I move on. I try to purchase naturally raised, organic, hormone and antibiotic free animal protein. I also try to avoid processed soy and corn.
3- Eat gentle sweets: Avoid chemicalized, artificial sweeteners and foods with added sugar. I use gentle sweeteners like honey, real grade B maple syrup, brown rice syrup, and stevia. Sugar causes chronic inflammation, heart disease, cancer, diabetes, premature aging, joint stiffness and it is addictive. I enjoy blueberries, raspberries, pineapple, carrots, sweet potatoes and even a little raw honey when cravings strike my sweet tooth. TIP: 4 grams = 1 tsp. of sugar.
4- Try Probiotics: Probiotics encourage good gut flora and boost our immune system. 70% of our immune system is in our gut! I take a probiotic every day.
5- Hydrate: Drink enough water, seltzer, teas, coconut water (not too much though or we can overdose on magnesium and not feel great) and other forms of non-sugar beverages. This helps fat burning, detoxing and muscle building, brain and organ function. TIP: Sometimes sweet cravings are a sign that I am dehydrated. Before I go for the sugar, I will have a glass of water and then wait a few minutes to see what happens.
6- Get more sleep: When I am tired or stressed, my body craves energy in the form of sugar. I have learned to recognize these cravings as a result of being sleep-deprived, going to bed late or waking up early. TIP: 7-8 hours of sleep per night is recommended.
7- Cleanse once or twice per year: Throughout the ages fasting and detoxing has been part of traditions and as a necessary time to rest the gut. A cleanse is a rebooting of the body so that the body performs optimally. The body uses its liver, kidneys, skin, lymphatic system, and intestines to neutralize and eliminate toxins. A cleanse teaches me how to eliminate the foods that do not sustain me and consume the foods that support my body. TIP: All mood and chemical reactions are made in the gut including serotonin which helps us heal from anxiety and depression.
8- Eat good fats: I try to eat good fats which include coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil, nuts, butter, avocados, and wild fed organic meats and fish. TIP: Forget about counting calories, it is the quality of the calories that is important!
9- Create NEW positive habits: I find if I write down 6-10 simple commitments to help me reach my health goals and read them daily, it is very effective.
10- Positive thinking: There is lots of scientific evidence that positive thinking is good for our health! I like to repeat positive affirmations in my classes and in my own personal practice. The mind governs the body and when the mind (positive affirmation) and the body (yoga posture) meet it is very powerful. Affirmations become a powerful tool to create our desired reality. We consciously and unconsciously invite opportunity to change the way we think when we use positive affirmations.
Remember , we are all doing the best we can!