I'd really like to write a book: "The Healthy Human: A Manual for Self-Care"
Contrary to popular belief, self-care is not a luxury. We, as humans, are NOT born into or innately entitled to great health until our 100th birthday.
Nevertheless we don't really take care of ourselves as well as we should, do we? Parents leave the hospital with new baby humans every day but rarely do we get instructions on how to best take care of these precious vessels.
The human form is a miracle in motion and this body, our only vessel for life, requires great care and consideration in order to operate optimally.
Occasionally our human form breaks or malfunctions, leaving us to wonder how to pick up the pieces. Sure, it's "work" to make healthy choices and to prioritize time for exercise, but it's easier to do this maintenance and improvement work now while you're healthy than it is to try to pick up the pieces and play catch up when you're already sick or injured.
The sad truth is that the vast majority of us take better care of our cars than we do our bodies! We take our cars in for tune ups, we change the oil, we wash them, we clean out the garbage from the side pockets and we will generally heed the advice of a licensed mechanic if he suggests a new fan belt or a new battery install.
But to whom do you refer for general health maintenance? Your doctor is really in the Sickness business.
Starting today consider assembling your "Healing Circle" with experienced professionals who can keep you healthy: Health Coaches, Nutritionists, Yoga teachers, Acupuncturists, Physical Therapists, Massage Therapists, Colon Hydrotherapists, etc.
Five Tips for Healthy Humans:
- Exercise. If you're not a gym person or a yogi, try walking, taking the stairs and standing up more often at work. Maybe join a swim group or make a regular commitment to go dancing.
- Eat well. Eating well does not mean being full all the time. It means eating copious amounts of fruits and vegetables, beans, seeds, nuts and legumes.
- Hydrate. Our bodies are at least 70% water. Our cells, muscles and brains don't function well when starving, so drink up and then drink up some more.
- Sleep. All bodily functions are thrown off-kilter if the body doesn't get enough time to rest and regenerate. A lack of sleep increases the stress response and greatly decreases your immunity. It's been linked to an increase in the early onset of a multitude of chronic diseases and can also contribute to untimely death. It is the foundation of healing. Unplug your devices earlier and start down regulating activities 30-60 minutes before sleepy time (take a bath, read a book, meditate, etc).
- Massage. I want to scream it from the roof tops, "Massage is basic self-care". It is NOT a luxury activity to be reserved only for the occasional spa visit. Compression and circulation are key to moving lymph, blood and cell materials efficiently through the body. It goes back to that hydration thing too. Get yourself some Yoga Tune Up® Therapy Balls and roll out your tissues!