Living healthy is not a diet…
Being healthy should be part of your overall lifestyle, not just a New Year’s resolution. Living a healthy lifestyle can help prevent chronic disease and long-term illnesses. Feeling good about yourself and taking care of your health are important for your self-esteem and self-image. Maintain a healthy lifestyle by doing what is right for your body.
Embracing a healthy, vibrant lifestyle may mean different things to different people, but the bottom line is, find balance. Balance is the key. Whether it involves reading a good book in a quiet, cozy corner of your home, or making time for that yoga class, the key is to make the time. Juggling life’s hectic schedule creates stressors, making it difficult to manage it all. Below are a few steps to a happier, healthier you:
Maintain a healthy weight. Those extra pounds can cause big trouble. They strain your heart, raise your blood pressure, and significantly increase your risk for a heart attack and chronic disease such as diabetes, stroke and certain cancers. Determine whether you are overweight by checking your body mass index. If you are overweight, determine a solid, attainable game plan to work towards your goal.
Stick with healthy food from each food group. This means staying away from food high in saturated fats, sodium and added sugars. Eat more lean proteins such as chicken or legumes and beans and increase your high fiber, nutrient-rich fruits and vegetables. Also, incorporate healthy fats such as avocados, nuts, and coconut oil.
Make sure your relationships are positive and healthy ones. Maintain contact with family and friends. Surround yourself with people who support you and who you feel good around. Your partner in life, friends and others who are in your life should respect you. If you find yourself in an unhealthy relationship, take steps to improve it or move on.
Engage in physical activity for at least 30 minutes every day. Take an exercise class, join the gym or just take a brisk walk outside. Making the time for physical activity is a necessity and not a luxury.
Know when and how to de-stress. Taking care of your mental health is just as important as taking care of your physical health. Make sure that you have positive ways of dealing with stressors in your life. This might be exercising, meditating, yoga, or just doing deep-breathing exercises. Reducing stress reduces the likelihood of some physical illnesses.
Stay active. Get involved through work, recreation or perhaps volunteer work in your community. Yes, it’s a 24/7 world but no one can work 24 hours a day. Take time for relaxation and doing things that make you happy.
The importance of eating organic…
How else can you be healthier? Eat organic. Organic refers to foods that contain no preservatives, nitrates, sulfites, no added chemicals, fertilizers, coloring or additives, monosodium glutamate (MSG) and are not genetically modified. Organic food is preserved and sweetened naturally using substances such as honey.
The average American consumes processed food daily and it is important to understand that every package of processed food contains canola, soy, or corn in some form. This implies that processed foods that do not carry the USDA Organic mark contain food that is genetically modified.
Pesticides, herbicides and other scientifically engineered chemicals seep into the ground and our water. Eventually we are ingesting these toxic compounds that were developed to kill living organisms. These toxins maneuver their way into our organs, and slowly poison our bodies.
Organic soil contains microbes that provide essential nutrients that cannot be found in artificial fertilizers. These helpful bacteria, algae, fungi and protozoa help to transform compost chemicals into healthy nutrients which are easily absorbed by plant roots. Depending on the choice of produce, organic is shown to have significantly higher levels of nutrients with greater amounts of salicylic acid and more Vitamin C, iron, calcium, magnesium, and phosphorous. Compared to the conventional marketed vegetables that are synthetically grown, organic foods are filled with the essential vitamins and minerals that others lack. Mother Nature is solely in charge of organically grown fruits and vegetables.
With regards to meat, the animals are reared without any antibiotics or growth hormones. In a lot of cases, antibiotics or growth hormones are injected into cattle to make them larger, fatter and hence deliver more meat. In organically reared cattle, they are allowed to grow and develop at their own pace, and without any synthetics injected into their system.
And so, should you eat organic? The answer is a definite yes. If price is a concern, then it’s best to start by selecting those items that are used on a daily basis – milk, meat, bread, eggs, fruits and veggies, and then gradually ease into a fuller lifestyle when affordable. The human body requires valuable, rich nutrients and real, live food to properly function, not something genetically or synthetically created in a lab.