Let food be thy medicine; thy medicine shall be thy food. —Hippocrates
Calling sugar the devil might be a little drastic, but the graphic above gets your attention, doesn’t it? Sugar lurks in many foods and is labeled as sucrose, fructose, and other natural-sounding ingredients, but it contributes to weight gain, diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity and many health problems. Sadly, my friends, sugar is the new tobacco. It can even be more addictive than cocaine.
I love sleep. My life has the tendency to fall apart when I’m awake, you know? —Ernest Hemingway
Getting enough sleep is an important part of being healthy. Adequate sleep makes you look and feel better. It helps boost your metabolism and immune function, and helps your memory. The older I get, the more I appreciate a successful slumber. But getting good, restful sleep can often be difficult.
You probably won’t function at your best if you don’t get enough quality sleep. “Losing four hours of sleep is comparable to drinking a six-pack of beer,” says Tom Rath, Author of the New York Times bestselling book, Eat Move Sleep.
Here are some things you can do to improve your sleep:
- Try organic bedding, mattresses, and even pillows.
- Unplug any electrical appliances, including alarm clocks, and put them seven feet from your bed, or even move them to another area.
- Avoid cell phone and computer use at least two hours before bedtime.
- Stop caffeinated drinks at least eight hours before bedtime.
- Take a few minutes to meditate, relax, and stretch before you jump into bed.
- Make sure your bed and pillows are clean and comfortable.
When we don’t sleep well, we’re worthless and tired the next day. Taking prescription drugs to stay awake or go to sleep adds more chemicals to your body and can contribute to lethargy the next day. Sometimes we overthink problems causing our brain to be on a constantly repeating soundtrack. Create a bedtime routine that includes all of the things listed above and sleep well!
Many of us have gallant plans to thwart overindulgent eating on holidays, but sadly, some of us have a difficult time passing up the cakes, cookies and chips. (My hand is up!) After all, what’s a Fourth of July celebration without s’mores or Thanksgiving without apple pie? Most of us give up at least a day of exercise in lieu of holidays too. So, how do you reset your psyche to get back on track to healthier living after the party is over?
Here are three quick and easy steps to get motivated:
You will find more happiness growing down than up. —Unknown
There’s more to playing than just having fun, though that’s important too! Many of us are just too serious. We seldom have laugh-out-loud fun. Playtime helps us physically and mentally by allowing us to exercise and be creative. Our imagination can be stimulated through a childlike recess. Physical exercise can release hormones in our bodies that create a feeling of euphoria (similar to the process that occurs during sex!). These hormones are also used to block pain. On top of it all, having fun burns calories and helps us to temporarily ignore our troubles.
Healthy citizens are the greatest asset any country can have.
After being exposed to toxic mold poisoning, I became chemically sensitive. Four types of mold infiltrated my bloodstream. With alternative remedies such as oxygen therapy, infrared sauna, vitamin IV, and eliminating chemical cleaners, I became super detoxified, which is good but also challenging. Strong chemical scents now make me physically ill. During my recovery, I couldn’t go into a mall, a grocery store, or even my son’s school.
While multiple chemical sensitivity is a controversial topic among physicians, I can tell you that it’s a very real diagnosis for my husband and me. Chemically scented candles give us headaches. That “new car” smell is actually the off-gassing of formaldehyde and other toxic chemicals used to treat materials for the carpet, dashboard, and seat covers. We use only paints with no volatile organic compounds (VOCs). VOCs give us headaches and flu-like symptoms.
When you put energy and effort into something it becomes an asset, something of value, or perhaps something for which you hope to receive a reward, bonus or promotion. Sweat equity is the extra energy you expend, above and beyond what’s expected, that will propel you into the next level in many areas of your life. Doing a better-than-average job at work might pay off in the form of a bonus or promotion. More often, however, it’s easier to put a little elbow grease into helping others, or doing something special for our loved ones. But what if we set an intention to put ourselves at the top of the list?
Life is work and relationships are even more work. There are times when we really don’t want to do something that’s expected of us, but we know our efforts will be appreciated, so we do it. We show up. We are the best we can be. We volunteer for charities, we attend events that we’ve made commitments to.
The art of healing comes from nature, not from the physician. Therefore the physician must start from nature, with an open mind. —Paracelsus
There is nothing more peaceful than being surrounded by nature and enveloped by its healing power. The sight of colorful birds and trees, the symphonic sound of crickets and birds singing, the gentle kiss of wind on your face, and the smell of freshly cut grass or a fragrant gardenia can be an instant stress reducer. The Great Outdoors is also a place where we can be alone with our thoughts and feelings. Have you ever gone for a walk to ‘clear your head’ and suddenly came up with creative thoughts about how to solve a problem or design something new? Inspiration takes place in many forms and in many places. Being in nature can do more than just enhance our sense of vitality.
Please be aware of chemicals & pesticides used in your home or office. This family was on vacation and now they are fighting for their lives.
I understand all too well what that’s like.
We became chemically sensitive after our home (featured on MTV Cribs) was contaminated with toxic mold between the walls. We never saw anything. It happened because of faulty building. Sadly, we lost our home and everything in it including Ted’s rock ‘n roll memorabilia and Rocco’s baby pictures. What’s worse, we all got very sick. Ted and I had 4 different types of mold in our bloodstreams. Rocco had severe asthma. Our immune systems were destroyed. I was on oxygen and couldn’t walk up a flight of stairs if my life depended on it.