Actions That Dramatically Improve Your Health (I)

Fitness File

Drink a Pint of Water as Soon as you Wake Up
We all know the importance of water, right? We evolved from water. Our body is made up of approximately 70% water. We are basically a walking, talking, big mass of mostly water.
First thing in the morning your body is dehydrated from 7+ hours of no water. Drinking a pint of water before you do anything else will give your body the top up it needs to start the day. In Dr. Batmanghelidj famous book “The Body’s Many Cries For Water” he explains, in great detail, the importance of drinking water. He believes that often we are not hungry but thirsty as the body confuses signals for water.
Drinking 2 litres of water per day is a good starting point for most adults. Performance, concentration and sickness are all symptoms of dehydration. Your intestines will also squeeze and extract water from your feces if you are really dehydrated and nobody wants their body made up of that type of water, do they?

Start a Workout Habit of 7 Minutes a Day
It doesn’t take long to form a new habit, usually in less than 30 days. Don’t try to do too much too soon. Start by just developing an exercise habit rather than killing yourself at the gym. Using a Daily 7 Minute Workouts is a great start:
1. Choose one movement pattern for each day of the week (Monday – Friday)
2. Movement Patterns include: Squatting, Pulling, Lunging, Pushing, Bending
3. Try to perform as many of that movement pattern as you can in 7 minutes
My advice would be to run through your 7 minute workout nice and early before breakfast. Early workouts work in tune with your hormonal system and leave you not thinking about exercise for the rest of the day. Start your 7 minute exercise habit today and before long it will feel as natural as brushing your teeth!

Ditch the Table Salt and Start Eating Real Sea Salt
The majority of people are still overloading themselves with processed salt. Salt isn’t actually the problem, it’s the type of salt that matters. Did you know that human blood has the same salt content as sea salt? Table salt is highly processed, often using chemicals that leave it clean, white and absent of all those precious trace minerals. Most table salt resembles something you would find in a science lab rather than in nature.
There are lots of great-unprocessed sea salt brands out there. Look for sea salt that is slightly grey in colour. My favourite is a French sea salt is called “Gros Sel de Guerande”. Buy a good brand of sea salt and it will last you for months.

Start to Breathe Deeply Through Your Belly Again!
Stress causes shallow breathing through the upper chest and neck. The more shallow you breathe, the more of a stress response you get. Have you ever watched a baby breathe? They breathe deeply through their bellies right? As we get older and stress starts to creep into our lives we start to take that breathing from the belly and shift up and into the chest and neck.
Shallow breathing causes headaches, upper back and neck tension! As well as keeping you highly charged and your hormonal system on overdrive. Learn to slow down your breathing and take your breath to your belly. Deep breathing through the diaphragm stimulates the “Parasympathetic Nervous System” and causes the body to relax.

1. Try taking 10 deep breaths counting to 5 on the IN breath and 5 on the OUT breathe

2. Push your belly OUT as you breathe IN and pull the belly IN as you breathe OUT

3. 2 thirds of your breath should come from your belly and 1 third from your chest
Take some time each day and learn to breathe deeply. It’s a wonderful stress reliever!

Re-Assess Your Medication and Make Some Changes
The sale of Drugs, whether over the counter or via prescription is a multi-million pound industry. Many people are far too easily convinced to take drugs based on TV ads or Doctors recommendations. The truth is, ALL drugs are poison to the body. It takes a lot of energy for the body to process drugs and most drugs have side effects.
If your are suffering from a sickness or disease then start to question what may be out of balance in your life. Are you stressed out, eating dead foods, dehydrated, lacking in quality sleep? If you have been taking medication for a long time then book an appointment with your doctor to reassess your situation. Don’t just reach for the drugs every time you have a headache, backache, constipation etc. Start to question the source of the problem rather than addressing the symptoms every time.

Get to Bed by 10:30pm, it’s When, Not How Much Sleep that Counts
The human being operates on what is called a circadian cycle. We evolved from nature and have always been influenced by the fall and rise of the sun. In the mornings the hormone Cortisol is stimulated, this prepares the body for action. In the evenings Cortisol levels should be reduced and Anabolic hormones are released to stimulate tissue regrowth and repair during sleep.
If you go to bed too late then you miss out a large portion of the Growth and Repair cycle, which usually runs from around 10-2am. From 2am to 6am most repair is mental rather than physical. We are creatures of the earth and need to work with our hormones rather than against them. It’s not necessarily how much sleep you get that matters but more when you sleep that counts!

Take Your Shoes off and Start Earthing
How often to you touch your bare feet on the grass or earth? Earthing is based on the principle that we have lost our connection with the earth. If you think about it, do you ever walk around in bare feet anymore? Our ancestors used to have constant connection with the earth and this is something that has been lost today.
There is lots of research coming out now that shows positive reasons why we should all get out there and dance on the grass or paddle in streams. Just connecting your body to the earth will give you lots of natural energy. So get out there today for 5 minutes and get connected back with nature.

Avoid Wheat for the Day, You Won’t Regret It
Wheat is a major problem and probably the most influential food action your could take today. It’s not actually the wheat that is the problem but the wheat’s protein Gluten that is the real nasty. The sticky protein Gluten is a big irritant to most people’s gut.
Being Gluten intolerant doesn’t just mean having gut problems like wind and a bloated stomach. Gluten can also cause an auto immune response from Leaky Gut Syndrome resulting in: Arthritis, Headaches, Back Pains, Depression and more. Gluten is everywhere so be careful. Common foods include: Breads, Pasta, Sauces, fillers in Sausages, and Cereals.
You can take a food sensitivity test to find out if you are Gluten sensitive or you can avoid Gluten for 30 days and see just how amazing you feel without it.

Free Your Mind With 5 Minutes of Meditation
Stress is the number one killer. Meditation offers you a chance to take your mind away from the daily grind and be with yourself for a few minutes. There are many ways to meditate; here are 2 of my favourite methods:
1. Sit quietly and breathe deeply through your belly. Concentrate on your breath as you breathe through your nose. Count each breath and see how high you can count.
2. Again sit or lie quietly and breathe through your belly. Concentrate your vision on an object about 10 feet in front of you. Keep your eyes relaxed and focus on that object ONLY.
If you do start to think about your worries and problems don’t give up just accept them and refocus on your meditation. Start with 5 minutes and work up to 30 minutes per day.

Avoid Drinking Caffeine in the Afternoon
Coffee and Tea both contain caffeine, which adds extra stress to your body and mind. The stress that caffeine causes affects your nervous system. With every cup of caffeine your adrenal glands release hormones that fire up your system and prepare it for action. As the system gets fired up glucose is released into the body to give it energy. This energy response all dates back to our survival days when we needed energy to fight or run from wild animals. We don’t usually need this energy anymore so it gets stored in the liver or in the fat cells for later.
The roller coaster that the blood sugar levels are put on due to caffeine intake and subsequent cortisol and insulin responses is very damaging to the body. Adrenal fatigue is all too common these days, as is Insulin Resistance and Diabetes. Caffeine really does get on your nerves so take a break from it as much as you can, especially in the afternoons when you should be winding down.

•Look out for part 2 next week

Related Articles