Thursday, January 19, 2012

Twelve Tips to Creating a Healthier and Happier Lifestyle

Made a New Year’s resolution to take better care of yourself?  Wondering where to start?  Here are 12 tips to creating a healthier and happier lifestyle for 2012:

1. Lose the booze.  Maybe not entirely, but try to drink in moderation. One or two glasses of red wine is heart healthy but too much can wear the body down and make it harder to for you to get to sleep. Drinking releases neurotransmitters that may make you feel better, but only temporarily (that can spiral into you not wanting to go to the gym).  Resveratrol capsules or powder is a better way to get the benefits without the extra calories and sugar.

2. Work up a sweat.  Sweating rids the body of toxins and releases neurotransmitters, which make you feel better. Working up a sweat can put those neurotransmitters to work for you and help and improve mood. Staying physically fit will help you stay mentally fit as well a physically ward off many chronic diseases.

3. Keep to a sleeping schedule. We all know that a few bad night’s sleep can wreak havoc on your skin, your health and your mood. Even when you've got more on your social calendar, try and stick to the same bedtime each night. Try Barry Goldstein’s “Ambiology Series” to get you to sleep and keep you asleep.

4. Get more vitamin D. Even if you have a lot of sun exposure you still need the base molecule for the sun to convert.  Most patients I test even in Arizona are deficient.  35 times your body weight gives you a rough estimate of how much to take.  Testing again in about 3 months makes sure you aren’t too high or low.

5. Mangia - eat like an Italian. A Mediterranean diet helps reduce inflammation and therefore, can reduce your chance of getting sick. When you're at the grocery store, load up on vegetables, nuts, and olive oil. 

6. DON'T forget the yogurt.  Nearly 90 percent of doctors eat yogurt and for good reason. Yogurt provides ''good'' bacteria in the digestive tract, and many yogurts are made using active, good bacteria. One of the words you'll be hearing more of in relation to yogurt is ''probiotics.'' Probiotic literally means ''for life.'' Probiotic health begins in the gut and moves to the immune system and neurotransmitters. If you have a blood sugar issue, eat plain or greek only. The fruit in most yogurt makes the sugar content too high.
Sleep well . . .  If you have difficulty getting to sleep consider listening to music at bedtime that uses to train your brain to get to sleep and promote better sleep.  You pineal gland is supposed to be triggered by darkness around 7 p.m. to product your own sleep hormone melatonin.  Darken your house around that time even is your still going strong. 

9.  Reduce inflammation. There are numerous over-the counter products as well as all-natural products that will help you reduce inflammation in achy and stiff joints. I particularly like turmeric and Curcumin.  You’ll feel better and your joints will fare better if the inflammation is reduced. Another great way of reducing inflammation is identifying which food you may be eating that cause a reaction.  This is a simple blood test done by a doctor trained in IgG allergy responses. 

10. Detox.  The lead content in foods and supplements is something a lot of people are unaware of. Make sure your products have been approved by your naturopathic doctor or that you know the questions to ask the health food stores about testing.  A urine test allows environmentally trained doctors to see your levels of heavy metals and if high create a chelation plan for you.

11.  Spend more time in the bedroom . . . There are plenty of scientific studies that say more intimacy means better health.  For your research go the site most doctors use.  PubMed to search any topic you desire.

12. Be mindful.  Begin and end your day with a mindfulness practice in the morning to set your intention for the day and to release any stress at end of the day.

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