Do you wish there was a secret on how to stay healthy? If you could just check off the points on the list and guarantee yourself wellness, would you do it? Imagine a life with the sniffles, a fever, missed work, missed events….ahhhhh.
Okay, I know there is nothing in life that is guaranteed (except that someday we will all die). There is no magic bullet pointed list to follow, no secret vitamin or essential oil to rub like a genie’s lamp to give you sickness immunity. But, there are lots of things that healthy people (or rarely sick folks) have in common. If we follow their lead, we’ll get a jump start on health and wellness and that’s almost as good as a magic bullet point list, isn’t it?
If you want to take your lead from healthier-than-normal people, here are some of the things to incorporate into your life in 2015 (and beyond, of course):
Stop sitting around. There are lots of studies out there these days about the risk factors associated with sitting too much. Common problems in sitting for extended periods include higher blood pressure, higher rate of heart disease and certain cancers, higher rate of obesity and a shortened life span (as in your 40% more likely to die earlier than non-sitters). Even if you have a desk job, try taking breaks every half hour to give your body a break and help extend your life and health.
Regular exercise. Yes, I know we hear this one all the time. But it’s true. Exercise helps both your mind and body. It’s associated with helping to combat depression as well as boosting your immune system.
Get enough sleep! We live in a sleep deprived society, but people who sleep for at least seven hours per night are less likely to get sick. While you’re sleeping your body is restoring your immune system and raising your melatonin levels. Sleep isn’t a luxury; it’s a necessity for good health.
Eat your veggies. Vegetables help keep you healthy. Not only are they full of vitamins and minerals, but they also contain phytonutrients and fiber, all of which are essential for healthy living.
Wash your hands. A great way for infectious pathogens to enter your body is from your hands to your mouth. Washing your hands regularly drastically reduces the chance of you ingesting the germs that will make you sick.
Reduce stress. Stress causes cortisol and epinephrine levels to rise in your body. This weakens your immune system which in turn, makes it harder for your body to fight off sickness and germs.
Meditate. This is a great way to reduce stress, which in turn reduces cortisol and epinephrine levels which in turn strengthens your immune system.
Be social. People that have friends and important relationships in their lives get sick less often. We are made to be connected to others. Apparently our body knows this and responds in a positive way when we have diverse, meaningful relationships.
Lose weight. Excess weight taxes the body often leads to other health issues such as diabetes and heart disease.
Avoid high risk behaviors. I’m not talking about staying cooped up in the house and being afraid of the world. Get out, try new things and exercise. This is good for you. But, avoid things such as smoking, eating a diet full of junk food, drinking to excess.
Eat more fruit. They contain antioxidants, nutrients and fiber. They’re also a great way to get a sweet tooth fix in a healthy way. Studies also suggest that eating fruit also curbs overeating.
Think GOOD thoughts. Thoughts are connected to biochemical reactions in the body. If the thoughts are positive, they actually increase the nitric oxide in your body. Nitric oxide helps increase your body’s immunity. What you THINK can actually contribute to your health.
Take vitamins. Even the best diet doesn’t give our bodies everything it needs. Our soils are depleted; our foods aren’t as good for us as they used to be. Good vitamins make up the difference. We have some good ones to get you started on the right track.
Take a good probiotic. Gut health is directly related to overall health. If your gut isn’t healthy, you won’t be either.
Drink water. Water helps hydrate the body and flush out toxins. Add lemon juice or lemon essential oil to your water to increase the detox.
Use therapeutic grade essential oils daily. Good ones to use on a regular basis: lemon (detoxing, refreshing, uplifting), protective blend (helps immunity), Grounding Blend (reduce stress), frankincense (repairing, rebuilding, restoring).
Laugh more. Studies have shown that it’s good for your health and wellbeing (see more on that here).
Be proactive. What if we all took even a handful of these ideas and put them into practice in 2015? We’d all be healthier, happier and, maybe even add a few days or even years of quality time to our lives. That’s almost as good as being able to rub a genie lamp isn’t it? Incorporating healthy practices into our lives will make us healthier. Win/win for all of us.