3 Holistic ways to heal your body
Proper Sleep and Rest
A recent study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that as many as two-thirds of all Americans don’t get enough sleep.
The optimal amount of daily sleep for the average person is eight hours, and for a child, 11-12 hours. But the myriad responsibilities that many of us, adults and children alike, juggle in this modern day, make it so that many are robbing themselves of one of the most crucial elements of maintaining good physical, as well as mental/emotional health.
The body is endlessly working to repair and regenerate itself. This happens to a great extent when we are sleeping — when our body’s energy is only minimally being used to sustain autonomic nervous system function (that is, involuntary functions such as heart beat), and most of it can be directed toward restorative and healing processes.
Shorting oneself on sleep is known to weaken the immune system. To get energy the artificial way (say, through caffeine) is to do the body a great disservice, by denying it the amount of rest that will make all its systems, including the immune system and the body’s healing and restorative processes, work at their best.
Another way in which we can greatly improve our body’s powerful self-healing properties is by eating a healthy, nutrient-rich diet. It is important to minimize our consumption of processed foods, as well as artificial food additives, preservatives, colorants, flavors, etc. A diet rich in vegetables and fruits, and low in animal fats and hydrogenated oils, is best for all of us. Lean sources of protein such as beans are also great. Nuts and seeds are rich in nutrients and fiber, and have beneficial oils. Many nutritionists agree that eating raw vegetables is preferable to cooking them, as they have the most nutritional value when they’re in their raw state. However, lightly steaming vegetables is also good. If you add vegetables to a meat soup, add them after meat has been cooked for 30 minutes or longer; leave vegetables to cook for 10-15 minutes only. Fresh herbs (parsley, cilantro, thyme, rosemary, and many others) are also packed with antioxidants (free-radical fighters), add great taste, and can be added to dishes and soups after dish or soup has been cooked. Organic foods are preferable over non-organic, as they have fewer traces of pesticides and growth hormones. In addition, organic fruits and vegetables have been found to have higher contents of flavonoids, plant compounds with antioxidant properties believed to aid in the prevention of cancer. Exercise
Regular exercise strengthens and conditions the body’s cardiovascular network and helps reduce emotional stress. It also promotes better sleep. You and your children don’t have to go crazy with it — it can be a fun activity that the family can enjoy, such as bike-riding, or just a regular walk that will stimulate blood circulation, and help the body oxygenate and purify itself. Each of us truly is in charge of our body’s health. And the more we work with our bodies, by giving them what they truly need, the less we will need to resort to…prescription medicines or doctor’s visits!