In order to stay alive and thrive you gotta have 7 things, pretty much every 24 hours. To be happy, healthy and stay youthful make sure you indulge in all seven every day!
Oxygen is of those things you take for granted. You don’t realize just how important it is until you’re not getting any. Breathing is about as basic as it gets in human necessity. Your brain and body can’t function without it. Toxin-free air is difficult to find sometimes. Between factory pollution, vehicle emissions, smokers and all the other crap that finds its way into our air and lungs, getting outdoors in nature and breathing deeply is the best way to refresh your body. Without adequate oxygen, brain and body cells die and people become anxious, unhappy and prematurely age. If you are a smoker, the fastest way to improve your health and mood is to quit smoking! Changing the filters in fans, vents and opening windows to allow in fresh air are ways to improve your air quality.
A lot of controversy surrounds the healthiness of America’s government regulated tap water, privately supplied bottled water and a plethora of other water supply options, including: water filters, purification processes, or home-dug wells. Basically water should be clear, order free and not have any particular flavor or aftertaste. Following the “8 glasses of water a day” rule is great, but water should be what you drink the most of every day. Anything else should be considered a “desert drink”. And that includes *everything* else except plain milk and 100% Orange Juice which contain necessary Vitamin D, Vitamin C and calcium.
So that soda, coffee, or glass of wine you planned to have, even the new fad of “vitamin enhanced waters”, are all “desserts”. And that alcohol you drink…it’s toxic. Seriously. You might as well drink Drain-o. It prematurely ages you, takes its toll on your skin, brain function and gives you the disgusting (and dangerous!) beer gut. So put down whatever you’re drinking and choose a bottle (or glass) of water instead!
If you’re used to eating a steady diet of pre-packaged, microwavable, high calorie/low nutrition crap or fast food, chances are you have no clue how miserable you’re making yourself! It’s like putting the cheapest grade of gas into a Bugati sports car. That’s a crime that should be punishable by public flogging! A sexy, sleeked out high performance vehicle must be fueled with the good stuff! But YOUR body is the same way. Garbage in, garbage out. Your body has probably been “pinging” and grinding gears for a long time and you’re not even aware it doesn’t have to.
Eating fresh, raw fruits and veggies, whole wheat grains and really, really WHOLESEOM food will give you more energy and you'll have a clearer mind, a better memory and just feel happier for no other obvious reason. Organic foods grown without pesticides (which cause cancer), and other dangerous chemicals and processes are the healthiest foods which contain more vitamins and nutrients. Check out your local farmers market and health food store.
Sleeping isn’t just a good idea. It’s mandatory. Not just for giving your body and mind “down time”, sleep is when your body heals itself (like the muscle tears you got at the gym) and rejuvenates all your microscopic working parts (like the cells of your skin, bones and organs). It’s also when your brain gets “backed up” and “defragmented” like a computer. Ignore these things for a while and your body won’t heal, your brain won’t work right and your ability to function at 100% is cut down to almost nothing. Go without sleep long enough and it will kill you.
Sleep deprivation has a list a mile long of negative side affects including: depression, mood swings, impaired body function, bad memory, poor thinking and reasoning skills, bad decision making, slow wound healing, degeneration of brain cells and the list goes on and on. If getting 6-8 hours of sleep a night is difficult, try taking a mild, over the counter sleep aid and sleeping 12-16 hours on your day off. It might feel like a wasted day before you try it. But when you wake up rested, feeling energetic, happy and highly motivated, you’ll realize your sleeping habits can either make you successful and happy, or hold you back and keep you feeling rotten.
Like air, sunlight is something we typically take for granted. The sun is so important to the survival of not just humans, but to all living things, that many ancient cultures used to worship the sun as a god. Direct exposure to the sunlight causes a chemical reaction in all living things. It causes plants to produce chlorophyll (which makes parts of them turn green) and breaks down the nutrients to “feed” the plant. Chlorophyll (not to be confused with Chloroform a deadly toxin produced by seaweed) provides an excellent source of vitamins and minerals that the body needs to stay healthy.
Humans (and animals) absorb sunlight through their skin to make Vitamin D (which prevents bones from softening and becoming easily breakable) and also breaks down a toxin (bilirubin) in the blood. Without adequate sunlight humans also develop depression, moodiness and their bodies have trouble regulating its rhythmic cycles of day and night, which can interfere with organ function, healthy sleep patterns and brain function.
Too much of anything is dangerous and that is true of sunlight too. Too much sunlight exposure can cause skin burns, dehydration, sun stroke, sunspots, wrinkles and skin cancers. Wearing sunscreen while outside has been proven to keep skin from burning and stay young looking while still allowing the necessary sunlight absorption. People should try to get at least 20 minutes of direct sunlight exposure every day. Those who are not exposed to daily amounts of sunlight should take a daily Vitamin D supplement and use “warm” (non florescent) lights to counteract some of the affects of not getting sunlight.
Recommending that people exercise 30 to 60 minutes a day should be a joke. Really, your body needs more than that. The human body is designed for movement and lots of it! The body craves the adrenaline and feel-good endorphins that are released when you push your body and make it DO things like run, dance, lift weights and other highly physical activities. People who are “active” every day not only have better circulation in their bodies (regulates your body temperature, keeps all your parts working, quickens healing time, keeps muscles strong, keeps skin firm and supple, fights artery clogging, reduced the chance for blood clots which can cause strokes and death) and basically allows the brain and body to work efficiently in tandem. Exercising outside also allows you to get the sun your body needs and the fresh air.
Without regular exercise the body can’t burn up the calories eaten every day and the extra fuel is saved in the body as fat. Collecting a little fat every day is one way people become overweight and unhealthy so slowly they don’t even realize it. Exercise that burns more calories than you consume in a 24 hour period has proven to be the most highly effective form of weight loss. Staying at a healthy weight is one of the hallmarks of a healthy and youthful person.
Exercise causes adrenaline to be produced in the body. An adrenaline rush keeps the brain “happy” and the body working at peak performance. A very effective form of adrenaline producing exercise is sex. Exercise isn’t the only way adrenaline can be experienced. Anything from roller coasters, driving fast, extreme sports or watching “scary” movies (that why they’re called thrillers- they cause a “thrilling” chemical reaction in the brain) can cause the sensation. Falling or being in love can also cause the sensations. So to maximize your feel good chemical brain release, exercise with your romantic partner!
Stress is a killer. Even if you’re accomplishing all the other 6 things, if you’re not unwinding and getting stress release, your body will store toxins, suffer mental issues (frustration, depression, anxiety, hypertension) and cause physical manifestations (everything from growing warts, to migraine headaches or developing cancer). Stress release is essential to prevent wrinkles, keep organs and the brain working correctly and allowing blood pressure to stay normal (to prevent heart attacks, strokes etc.).
Whether it comes in the form of something slow and relaxing like a massage, a warm bath, reading a book, doing yoga, meditation or deep breathing exercises, listening to soothing music, having orgasms, slow rhythm activities (swings, rocking chairs, swaying to music, playing a musical instrument etc.) or something intense like taking frustration out on a punching bag or doing demolition or chopping wood, the body needs a way to eliminate all the negativity it collects every day.
So there you have it. If you aren't getting these vital seven things every day, change that! You'll be happier, healthier and look and feel younger. And who doesn't want that?