1.Eat Natural and Healthy Foods
“You are what you eat.”
~ Victor Hugo Lindlahr
FOOD, as we all knew, is the primary need for human existence. Needless to say, without food the human body will deteriorate and – surely – die.
In 1940, Victor Hugo Lindlahr – a passionate advocate of the idea that food controls health; and son of Dr. Henry Lindlahr, ND (Naturopathic Doctor) – published the book entitled: You Are What You Eat, which popularized the expression; with a strong belief that “90% of the diseases known to man are caused by cheap foodstuffs.”
In other words, eating of unnatural and unhealthy foods will result to various diseases;
and, if curative recourse is ignored, may deteriorate the human body sooner than later.
“What is food to one, is to others bitter poison.”
Inherent essentials of modern naturopathy include eating of “natural” foods according to one’s blood type, to invigorate or strengthen the respective immune system; and may prevent the development of hereditary and life-threatening diseases.
Incidentally, Hippocrates, renowned Greek physician – referred to as Father of Medicine – was claimed by naturopaths as the first advocate of naturopathic medicine; and Father Sebastian kneipp, Bavarian catholic priest, as one of its forefathers.
Dr. Peter D’Adamo, ND, author of the best-selling book : Eat Right For Your Type, first published in 1997, categorized foods according to 4 blood types, namely:
- Blood type O (The Hunter). Meat eater (high protein, low carbohydrate). Should restrict wheat and most other grains.
- Blood type A (The Cultivator). Vegetarian; high carbohydrate, low fat. Should eat vegetables, fruits and seafoods; with few restrictions.
- Blood type B (The Nomad). Wholesome. Balanced; with varied diet of A and O. The only blood type that does well with dairy products. Strong immune system. Tolerant digestive system.
- Blood type AB (The Enigma). Rare. Biologically complex. Sensitive digestive tract. Has most of the benefits and intolerances of types A and B; and has the friendliest immune system of all the blood types.
You may explore the concept of naturopathy – as regards foods – to complement the previous article, Health Is Wealth; and adapt some variations or revisions of eating natural and healthy foods; for a thorough primary foundation of a healthy lifestyle.
2. Sleep well
“Sleep is the best meditation.”
~ Dalai Lama
SLEEP, also plays a very important role in our health. Apparently, as we all knew, when regular sleep is observed, vigor and energy are replenished.
According to health experts, we need to rest 7 to 8 hours every night; if possible, at 9:00 in the evening until 5:00 in the morning.
Generally, the foregoing span of hours have greater healthy benefits; since the complex system and various functions of the human body are designed to be rejuvenated every hour, respectively.
Specifically, sleep improves the immune system, maintains blood pressure and sugar levels. It also helps heart vessels in its normal healing process.
Moreover, it was discovered that – as we sleep – the brain sits in a clear fluid; which flows between the brain cells and acts as the waste removal agent of the brain.
In other words, the brain is quietly working hard in cleaning and maintaining this complex human machine, while sleeping. Hence, enhances cognitive functions to become more productive and creative.
Conversely, sleep deprivation weakens the immune system which, then, requires a longer recovery from illnesses. It may also result to an increased risk of heart, high blood pressure and stroke; as well as diabetes and kidney diseases.
A study of teenagers showed that with each hour of sleep lost, the risk of obesity increases; and in other age groups as well.
Another study disclosed a link between sleep deprivation and psychosis; which alters activity in some parts of the brain. If so, a person has trouble in making decisions, solving problems, controlling emotions and behavior and coping with changes.
In other words, sleep deprivation creates negative effects on alertness and cognitive performance and decreases brain activity and function.
Sleep deprivation also increases levels of stress hormones, which may reduce new cell production in adult brains; become incapable of putting an emotional event into the proper perspective; and a controlled suitable response to the event.
More so, sad to say, sleep deprivation has been linked to depression, risk-taking behavior and even suicide.
Ralph Waldo Emerson, therefore, seriously reminds, “Finish each day before you begin the next, and interpose a solid wall of sleep between the two.”
3. Exercise Regularly
“Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body.”
~ Joseph Addison
EXERCISE, for some people, seems of primal importance for their health; that they have to engage in strenuous or rigorous physical activities. Except, of course, for those who are participants or delegates of professional athletic sports or competitions.
But if we study well, exercise has lesser importance compared to food and sleep. In fact, as we all witnessed, many people don’t even bother to exercise in their lifetime, yet they live quite better? It does not mean, however, that we have to ignore exercise.
Conversely, whenever possible, one should do it regularly. Some health experts opine that if we have a daily habit of exercise for – at least – 30 minutes, we have complied with its demand; and would reap its various health benefits.
You may choose an exercise according to your convenience and passion, such as walking, running, biking, swimming, aerobics or martial arts, just to mention a few.
In fact, little practical physical movements are supplemental. You may take, for instance, the stairs instead of the elevator. Park your car quite farther from your destination just to walk; and enjoy washing and cleaning it by yourself.
Some Benefits of Exercise
- Exercise boosts energy and endurance. It delivers oxygen and nutrients to your tissues; and helps your cardiovascular system work more efficiently. It may also control weight, as you burn calories.
- It helps keep your thinking, learning and judgment skills sharp as you age. It stimulates your body and release chemicals that improve the structure and function of your brain.
- It can improve self-esteem, boosts confidence and over all mood. It promotes better sleep. However, you should not do it close to bedtime; to prevent much energy as you go to sleep.
- It combats many diseases; prevents arthritis, diabetes, the risk of cardiovascular diseases, unhealthy triglycerides and boosts good cholesterol. Hence, increases your chance of living longer.
- It helps prevent anxiety and depression, even by moderate walking. Some studies disclosed that running for 15 minutes a day, or walking for an hour, reduces the risk of major depression by 26%.
John F. Kennedy profoundly remarked, “Physical fitness is not only one of the most important keys to a healthy body, it is the basis of dynamic and creative intellectual activity.”
4. Relaxation Or Solitude
“All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.”
~ James Howell
“The best thinking has been done in solitude.”
~ Thomas A. Edison
RELAXATION or SOLITUDE – same with exercise – may have lesser importance than food and sleep, respectively. In fact, many people would even consider it as optional.
This last – but not the least – resource of a healthy lifestyle, however, is also important not only for physical benefits but mental stimulation as well. As Albert Einstein pondered, “The monotony and solitude of a quiet life stimulates the creative mind.”
In fact, some of great inventions, discoveries or man-made creations substantiated, were results of rare and exceptional ideas or thought process; when inventors, scientists, deep thinkers and the like, were in their relaxation or solitude moments.
Evidently, for instance, is a famous story about Archimedes, Greek scholar, mathematician and inventor. He seemed was in momentary relaxation or solitude, when a solution to his problem suddenly or surprisingly came.
As he stepped on public bathtub and noticed that the water level rose, he instantly understood that the volume of water displaced must be equal to the volume of the part of his body he had submerged.
Because of his astonishment, he jumped out of the bathtub and ran through the streets yelling, “Eureka!,” “Eureka!” – in Greek – which means, “I found it!,” “I found it!” That was the “Aha!” moment which made his relaxation or solitude so remarkable.
He, eventually, applied his discovery on what he called “principle of buoyancy;” the reason why huge ships, weighing thousands of pounds, could float on water.
The foregoing phenomenon may also be considered as a “flash” or “hunch.” Some spiritually -inclined individuals distinctly call it “divine inspiration” or “infusion from on high;” for the continuing progress and development of mankind.
We, therefore, need relaxation or solitude moments not just to complete the components of a healthy lifestyle for physical benefits, but to invigorate our “inner” strength as well; so that we can respond to greater challenges; and may fulfill a higher or noble purpose too.
More so, apropos of solitude on a profound insight, God – through the Scripture – has declared, “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.” ~ Jeremiah 33:3