Health is Wealth

As a Deepak Chopra Certified Perfect Health Ayurveda Instructor, I’ve learned there are 5 key tips to obtaining the body you desire and living a full life. Like all good things, it requires hard work that only comes from within. It comes from a love for your self.

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1.  Think positive.

Focus on all the things you’re grateful for. Are you holding grudges? When we get hurt it’s easy to take on the victim role. If you have past trauma, pain, recurring hurtful situations, talk to a professional. Until you deal with these issues, stop negative self-talk, or learn to give yourself a break, you won’t fully enjoy the gift of each day. Your body hears what you think, so take the time to forgive your past so you can fully enjoy your present. If you struggle with this, try this technique: write down 3 things you love about yourself every day. Take time to spend time by yourself. When you remove yourself from outside distractions, you give yourself the time to focus on what makes you happy, healthy, and loved. When we sit by ourselves, we find our true selves. 

2.  Keep good company.

Who do you spend most of your time with? Do you feel happy and healthy around them? Or do you find yourself sad, mad, and irritated? Are they unkind to you or are you unkind to them? This is not healthy. Breaking up with unhealthy people that you love or have been longtime friends with can be hard, but you must set boundaries for your own well-being. Spend time with people that lift you up and you lift up. You cannot stop someone from being unhappy—that is their own work (show them Step 1!). We all have bad days, but feeling good, helpful, and positive should outweigh feeling drained. Make a commitment with friends and family to talk about positive events, take walks, make healthy meals, fill up each other’s souls with love, kindness, laughter, and fun. 

3.  Get your ZZZs in.

During sleep, your body repairs muscles, organs, and cells. It clears waste from the brain, supports learning, and memory. With a good night’s sleep comes more productivity. When you don’t get enough sleep, your body produces the hunger-causing hormones: leptin and ghrelin. I notice my clients that sleep more don’t struggle as much to maintain or lose weight. They’re more positive and upbeat, don’t fatigue as easily from workouts, enjoy work, and have a love for life. If you have a tough time sleeping, try to adopt a nighttime routine. Don’t drink caffeine after 3 p.m. Turn off all electronics one hour before bed. Drink chamomile tea. Darken the room and turn your clock away from you. You can also try these relaxation techniques: journaling worries or stressful thoughts to get them out of your head, put on calming music, meditate, stretch, or try different breathing techniques. An easy breathing technique I use is: breathe in through your nose for four counts and out your nose for four counts. Continue, focusing on your breath. Soon enough, you’ll be fast asleep! 

4.  Make exercises fun. 

Exercise comes natural to some, but to others (like me and some of my clients), it feels like we’re just going through the motions. Since I was diagnosed with arthritis at age six, it hurt to move. At age 21, I weighed 204 pounds and I had enough. I knew that it was up to me to make me feel better. Embarrassed to be seen exercising, I started doing videos in my living room. To start, I could only do 5-10 minutes a day. The negative voice in my head told me it would make me feel worse, but to my surprise, as I started losing weight, I felt so much better! At first it was hard, but once I got in the groove I had fun. It relieved stress, anxiety, and my confidence soared. I still suffered from chronic pain, but exercise changed my life. Now I help others transform their lives by transforming their bodies. Exercise is vital for longevity and overall mind and body wellness. Physical activity helps avoid developing certain diseases, including obesity, type 2 diabetes, and high blood pressure. If you’re struggling to find something you love, try different things. Schedule time to move with friends. Make specific fitness goals and track them. Celebrate small victories. Try different forms of cardio 3-5 times a week. Then add strength-training exercises for all major muscle groups at least 2 times a week. Today, there are so many apps that can help you get enough exercise. Make sure you check with your doctor to decide what exercise is best for you.

5.  Be a picky eater. 

Food is my medicine. When you eat food that fuels your body well, you feel energized. Food is healing. I’m a firm believer that when it comes to a particular way of eating, we’re all different. We 100% control what we put in our mouths. So, choose wisely. Make sure to pick whole, real food. Try to avoid artificial sweeteners, preservatives, and chemicals. If you cannot pronounce it, don’t eat it! That doesn’t mean food has to be boring or bland. Some people do better with more animal protein, some with complex carbs, some vegetarian, vegan, et cetera. Vegetables and fruit help reduce the risk of many diseases, including high blood pressure and some cancers. Also high in fiber, they keep most people full longer and are rich in vitamins and minerals that help you feel energized. Low in fat and calories, they’re a good choice for people watching their weight. Fruit is a simple carbohydrate full of vitamins, antioxidants, and some with electrolytes. True, they contain carbohydrates, but don’t leave them off your plate unless your doctor instructs you to. Complex carbohydrates are found in vegetables, peas, whole grains, and beans. They turn into glucose in the body and are used as energy. Complex carbs are digested slower than simple carbohydrates, which raise blood sugars quickly. Not all fats are bad for you, but should be eaten in moderation if you’re trying to lose weight. Some healthy fats are avocados, olive oil, salmon, eggs, nuts, flaxseeds, and nut butter. These aren’t trans fats, the type you find in high-fat cuts of meat and fried foods. Healthy fats help with digestion, trick your body to be happy and full, control blood sugar, power up your immune system, and foster better skin. Certain proteins have wound-healing benefits and can make you feel full longer. Like I said, food is medicine!

You are the only you. You are worth all the money in the world. Treat your body, mind, and soul like it. Take care of yourself. Health is wealth!