Every wellness professional has a collection of suggestions that they make to almost every client. These are the basics, the foundation of a wellness program. I decided to list some of my fundamentals here to help you on your way to reaching your wellness goals.
1) Hydrate: Depending on your age, you are anywhere from 70-85% water. The older you are the “dryer” you are. Therefore roughly 7/10ths of every cell in your body is water. The rule of thumb for the minimum about of water you should drink each day is easy to calculate. Simply weigh yourself (in lbs.), cut that number in half, and drink that number in ounces of water. (Example 130 lbs/2 = 65 ounces of water each day minimum) The only thing that counts as water is water or all natural, caffeine free, herbal tea. Caffeinated drinks are anti-water and I advise people for every caffeinated drink, you should drink twice that amount in water and it should not count toward your total ounces needed for the day.
2) “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” ~ Michael Pollan – Great advice! By “food” we are talking whole foods that come from the earth with little to no processing. We are not talking about synthesized food products, high-fructose corn syrup, sulfites, nitrates, or artificial colors, flavors, preservatives, and sweeteners. We are not talking soda. We are talking about almonds, squash, quinoa, kale, salmon, walnuts, blueberries, honey, spinach, eggs, carrots, tomatoes. You know, the kinds of foods your great grandmother had in her pantry and in her garden. By “not too much” we are talking about eating slowly, chewing your food thoroughly, and stopping eating when you are satisfied instead of when you are full. “Mostly plants” means that there should be more vegetation on your plate than anything else. More on that in #3.
3) Eat less animal protein (meats, dairy, seafood, eggs). Let’s look back at humans in nature. We have evolved from a hunter/gatherer society. The hunters did not kill something every day and when they did, it was shared among the members of the tribe so portions were small. While many people prefer a vegetarian diet, most people will benefit from eliminating animal protein from some of their meals. My advice is typically “don’t eat animal protein at every meal and not every day.” When you are having a portion of meat, it should be the smallest portion on the plate as compared to the vegetables which should be the largest portion (not potatoes or corn though).
4) Foods I think most people would do well to avoid: Sugar, wheat (even whole wheat), lunchmeats (ham, salami, bologna pepperoni, etc.), bacon (even turkey bacon), Cool Whip, Velveeta, sausage (unless it’s natural), “diet” anything, “lite” anything, fat-free versions of foods that should have fat in them, milk (lots of calcium in green leafy vegetables), and anything that you can put on your counter and it never rots. If no self-respecting bacterium will eat it, neither should you. I could do a blog or ten about everything listed here and more. This is just a place to start.
5) Stop viewing yourself as sick and getting sicker. An affirmation I give many of my clients is “I am better today than I was yesterday and I’ll be better tomorrow than I am today.” Many people have a hard time envisioning full restoration of their health at first, but just about everyone can attach to getting just 1% better tomorrow. Manifest wellness!
For More Info: These are just a few guidelines for getting started on the path to naturally achieving your wellness goals. For more of my tips, strategies, and suggestions, check out my book 7 Steps to a Naturally Unbridled Life — An Introduction to Holistic Living: Body, Mind, Spirit, & Planet or 100 Days, 100 Ways to a Happier, Healthier Life. Both are available through my publisher Lulu.com or here in my online store.