5 Pillars of Great Health
5 Pillars to Great Health:
- Air (breath)
Air is the most important element of our health because we would die without it. While breathing keeps us alive, it's important to be aware of the air quality we're intaking. Poor air quality (pollution, mold, toxins, etc.) can stress the body and cause many health issues.
The best way to improve the quality of your air:
Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, kale, brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, or foods containing sulforaphane help your body remove pollutant waste from your lungs. But the best food you can eat for your lungs is broccoli sprouts. Throw them on top of your salads or avocado toast for a huge nutritional boost.
Putting plants inside your house improves the air quality, can help boost your mood, and they look good. The best ones to get are:
- Peace Lily
- Snake Plant
- Spider Plant
- Devil's Ivy
"For breath is life, so if you breathe well, you will live long on earth."
Setting aside time and following a breathing method can really take your health to the next level. It helps the nervous system, and it has a way of bringing you into the present moment. Last week we mentioned The Wim Hof Method app, but it's worth mentioning again. Whether you use his method, our monthly meditation guide, or box breathing, try to take 2-5 minutes every day to focus on it.
- Diffusing essential oils
- HathaSpace Air Purifier (This is a heavy-duty purifier)
Water is an essential part of who we are. Our body is at least 60% water, and we can't go more than three days without it. When we use water correctly (drinking enough and drinking the right kind), it greatly benefits our health.
Drinking Enough and The Right Kind
A good rule of thumb to know how much water you need to drink is to take your body weight and divide it by two. For example, if you weight 200 pounds, you should drink 100 ounces of water a day. But it's also important to listen to your body. Some days you need more water, and some days you need less depending on your activity levels.
We've discussed this in previous newsletters, but spring water is the best drinking water if available. Dr. Mercola has a great article that explains why tap water and distilled water can be dangerous and the benefits of drinking spring water and filtered water.
Last year, a friend of ours brought up the point that the chemicals in water can enter your bloodstream through your skin when you shower or soak in the bath. Unfortunately, the tap water in your house is full of chlorine and other chemicals that can cause skin irritations like acne. Getting a shower head filter is a great way to remove all those nasty chemicals. The crazy thing is, you might not even know how much they're bothering you until you remove them. We got ours on Amazon for about $35.
Getting a good night's rest is the key to success in life. When you stay up late consistently or pull allnighters, you start to become impaired and can't function or think. Nothing can replace sleep, so if you're deciding between finishing something or going to bed at a decent hour, choose sleep. You'll feel better the next day and be far more productive.
Here are some informative books and articles on sleep:
- Why We Sleep by Matthew Walker
- Change Your Schedule, Change Your Life by Dr. Suhas Kshirsagar
- The Sleep Revolution: Transforming Your Life, One Night At a Time by Arianna Huffington
Sleeping Giants (ESPN)
Quick tips to improve sleep:
- Stop using your phone and screens an hour before sleep.
- Read before bed using a candle or small clip-on book light.
- Do a 3-5 minute gratitude meditation.
When it comes down to it, the best tool for improving sleep is making it a priority, and having the mindset that nothing can replace sleep. Our goal is to get 8-10 hours of sleep in 24 hours. Try to make it a goal to get at least 8 hours of sleep at night, and if necessary, a 45-minute nap during the day.
"If you go to bed at 10:00 p.m. and get up by 6:00 a.m., things will work out for you."
-Gordon B. Hinckley
When choosing between staying up late to finish things, or going to bed, go to bed. When you get a full night's rest and wake up early, you always get more done.
"Let food be thy medicine, thy medicine shall be thy food."
When it comes to food, the most important thing to understand is that food is way more than just calories in and calories out. From an external standpoint, you may be able to keep your figure and remain "healthy" by counting calories, but your overall health will struggle. As Dr. Hyman said, "all calories aren't' created equal."
Because unhealthy food is so addicting, it can be hard to remove it from your life if you don't have the proper game plan. That's why we always stress the importance of focusing on one habit at a time. When you focus on adding one good habit into your life, the bad ones will naturally fall away over time. Having a green smoothie every day is a great place to start. It helps you get in a lot of nutrients (greens, healthy fat, clean protein) without having to cook a gourmet meal. Remember, the food you eat matters!
"To keep the body in good health is a duty; otherwise, we shall be able to keep our mind strong and clear."
Unless you're training for something specific, you can get a great workout in ten minutes or less. Exercise is about having mastery over your body and mind. If you can wake up and workout in the morning 3-5 times a week, you'll feel so much happier and more in control of yourself. Exercise is crucial to your overall health, but the real key is making it quick and straightforward so that it can be consistent! Going as hard as you can for ten minutes straight will be more beneficial than 50% compacity for 30 minutes.