By Sari Huhtala
If you’re feeling crummy, you are only one change away from feeling a little better and the more changes you create in your life, the more awesomeness you create in your life.
One day, one change offers a practical approach to holistically transforming your life one day at a time. Someone once said to me “You’re not responsible until you are aware.”
One day, one change is here to help you become aware. Set a goal to initiate one change each day and make a pact with yourself to keep those changes.
Lately I’ve noticed a lot of people have the respiration rate of my cat. That can’t be good. When you learn to breathe deep, you oxygenate your body. The perks? Aside from the release of happy-hormone endorphins, your heart will be pumped when it receives more oxygen and you’ll be helping your body detoxify.
Every day when you are in your car or on the bus take one minute to focus on breathing. Take a deep, four-count breath in, filling your lungs completely, then exhale for eight counts to get rid of all the residual air lingering in your lungs from yesterday. Then repeat and repeat.
Drink two cups of quality water as soon as your feet hit the floor in the morning. Two is a bare minimum. I would even shoot for four cups to get your brain and body up to snuff after a night of sleep.
Fuel your brain with fruit in the morning. If you’ve already figured this one out, awesome, you’re pretty smart. Just eating a ripe banana can help super-charge your brain. Add at least two servings of fresh fruit to your morning routine. This is not rocket science. You got this.
One of my personal training clients complained she was perpetually tired at work in the afternoon. Being a food sleuth I quickly discovered she was eating whole wheat toast for breakfast. If that’s you, cut it out. High-glycemic index foods will spike your insulin (insulin, by the way, is the only hormone that tells your body to store fat), and you will be on a fast-track to an afternoon crash. Hey, I used to be one of those crash victims, but then I became aware, and well, then responsible. You get the drift.
Go to the grocery store. Invest in a $2.50 box of oat bran. By the way, $2.50 will likely buy you a two-month supply. Prepare oat bran for breakfast. It literally only takes one minute to cook. You can even do it instant-oats style and just add boiling water to it. Then add your fruit and get set to let go of your nap-a-holics membership.
Ok, now it’s time to pump up your oat bran. Add 3 tablespoons of fresh ground anti-cancer flax to your oat bran in the mornings. Your colon will love you for it.
There’s one final step to supercharge your breakfast. Add 2 tablespoons of hemp seeds to your oat bran. This superfood sidekick is tasty enough that kids will enjoy it, and it’s a nutritional powerhouse for your brain and body.
Shake it off. If you can find one minute out of the 1,440 you have in a day, then you can add this healthy habit. Wake up every cell of your body with shaking yoga, or bio energy meditation – a spiritual discipline developed by Balinese guru Ratu Bagus to help strengthen life force energy and clear energy blockages for a healthier body and mind. It’s crazy easy. You can turn up your favourite tunes if you like, or not. Stand with knees relaxed and start to quickly bounce the body without lifting your feet off the floor. You can shake your arms and hands overhead if you like. One minute of shaking is a good way to wake up the body’s cells.
Eat your fruit, don’t drink it. Swap out juice for water. Juice, even natural juice from concentrate, is just an unnecessary source of extra sugars. Eat plenty of fruit instead, and drink water.
Stop the fabric softener madness. I know commercials tell us that we need fabric softener, but if that were true then how could I have survived this long without it? If you are still using fabric softeners, stop wasting your money and your health. The Environmental Working Group ranks fabric softeners among the worst toxic offenders. Adding half cup of baking soda to your wash cycle can help with static cling if you really feel you need something, but maybe try eliminating it all together, just to see if the sky falls, or not.
If you’re still sleeping with your cell phone, turned on, in your bedroom get it out of there and give yourself a break from electromagnetic field radiation. Your sleep quality will improve without those toxic EMFs.
One of the simplest and cheapest health regimes you can incorporate into your daily routine is Himalayan salt sole solution, available at most health food stores. The solution simply requires quality water and a chunk of Himalayan salt, dissolved for 24 hours to reach a fully saturated state. Taking one teaspoonful of sole daily adds electrolytes to your body and 84 trace minerals. An Inter-University of Graz, Australia study found sole had positive effects on the respiratory and circulatory system, as well as organs and nervous system functions.
Swap out your regular refined table salt for Himalayan salt or Celtic salt. Your body will be happy you did.
Practice gratitude today. Be thankful that there’s something to be thankful for and notice the warm fuzzy feeling you get.
Try laughter yoga. Take a deep breath in and as you exhale release with laughter. Repeat a couple of times. It sounds funny, no pun intended, but by doing so you’ve just raised your serotonin levels and released endorphins – natural pain killers – simply by creating laughter.