By Gwen Lewis
Looking after your body as a whole is important to stay healthy and strong, but don’t neglect your mind and emotions as these are connected to your physical well-being. Here are some easy ways to incorporate holistic living into your life.
Bring More Fresh Produce into Your Diet
Just by replacing unhealthy foods with fresh produce, you boost your health in a snap. Fruits and vegetables are filled with antioxidants that keep illness at bay while giving your body the nutrients it needs to be strong and full of energy. If you battle to eat five or more servings of produce a day, simply add them to your regular meals. For instance, throw some berries into your oatmeal or have a banana with your peanut butter sandwich.
You should also try to replace any sugar-filled snacks with fresh produce instead, so you’ll get the kick of sweetness you need without being unhealthy. The bonus is you’ll also boost your energy!
We lead busy and often stressful lives, but to be healthy you need to give yourself a bit of quiet time. A good activity to do during this time is meditation, where you calm your mind and get in tune with yourself. Any other activity that helps you feel replenished and content is great, though, such as being creative – whether that means painting, writing or making a collage, creativity boosts your mood and makes you feel inspired which will have a positive ripple effect on your day.
However you de-stress, do it daily as studies have found a link between stress and health conditions such as strokes, heart disease, asthma, gastrointestinal problems, and anxiety, to mention a few. If you’re too stressed, you can’t be healthy. It’s that simple.
Have Healthy Relationships
Part of holistic living is remembering that we are connected to those around us. Having healthy, positive relationships that build us up and make us feel good is important as this influences our body and mind. Research has not only found that cancer patients supported by loved ones tend to live longer, but also that not having connections is as dangerous to your health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day! The reason is because being connected to people makes you feel part of a group and gives you a sense of purpose. When you have purpose, it makes you take better care of yourself.
Get To Bed!
Sleep is such a crucial element of holistic health because it keeps you emotionally, mentally and physically strong. When you get enough sleep, your body feels energetic, you skip bad moods that can result from tiredness, ward off stress, and you allow your body to heal. To improve the quality of your sleep, make sure you have a comfortable mattress and that your bedroom is free of light and noise.
Start Clean Eating
Foods that are full of sugar, salt, or are highly processed are harmful to your body, but what about the pesticides and chemicals they might contain? Choose organic produce as much as possible so that you don’t put toxins in your body. Clean foods are those that contain only one or two ingredients, which makes them purer than refined goods, so make them a priority when grocery shopping.
Be More Mindful
Mindful eating is about concentrating on your food when you eat it instead of being distracted. When you eat in front of the television or computer, you might not even realise just how much you’re eating and let’s be honest, you won’t be enjoying every bite. By shutting out distraction and taking your time to chew and digest, this makes you take pleasure in food while also preventing you from eating when you’re emotional.
If you tend to eat when you’re angry, sad, anxious or happy, this turns into a way to cope with your feelings but it can lead to overeating as well as making you unable to deal with your emotions because you’re too busy filling them with food. It’s an unhealthy habit. When you’re faced with an uncomfortable emotion, do something constructive with it, such as mindful living: meditate, chat to a loved one, or write in your journal, for example.
Holistic living is an easy way to look after your mental, emotional, physical and soulful self! This translates into a happier, healthier life.
ABOUT GWEN LEWIS
Gwen Lewis is a writer and makeup artist based in Southern California. Because of her passion for beauty and health, she hopes to help others not just look great but feel great, whether through makeup or her writing. In her free time, she enjoy shopping and pick-up soccer games with her friends.