Health… Expectations Vs. Reality

What is health? What is perfect health? Is it possible to achieve perfect health? If so, how long does it take? Are these all expectations that social media has set or is it the reality? These questions are often questions I ponder about as a well-being practitioner. Some people ask me that too, but it’s just such a long answer. I think people should read this instead of me answering it verbally.

Health according to the World Health Organisation, is “Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”. This is completely true; many people think just because they do not have pain they are in good condition. The definition also includes ‘mental and social well-being’. I feel too many people in the world now only focuses on the thing that they can see or feel when exhibiting physical health. The expectation is because someone has rock hard 6 pack or has an amazing body they must be in perfect health. In reality, it does not necessarily reflect their state. The person with an amazing body may have reached peak physical health but that same person may always be conscious about their own body image that it causes mental disorders such as body dysmorphic disorder (BDD). This neglects the aspect of mental health.

 

Cont.

 

So to answer the question is it possible to achieve perfect health; the short answer is yes but there is always a catch to it. In my opinion, being physically perfect is to be in a balanced state of ‘physical, mental, and social well-being’. Some may be already in that realm if you are I congratulate you. However, if you are there already, are you taking it for granted, or are you actively trying to improve or maintain it? This is where the wellness model comes in. To achieve even a higher state of health is to actively pursue maintenance. We can accomplish this through regular chiropractic care, a continuation of healthy habits (mentally, physically, and socially) and self-reflection. Unlike the allopathic model of health where we seek help or therapy after if a breakdown occurs. The reality of perfect health is for us to maintain the standard, this way, we can enhance our own body’s ability.

If you are not in ‘perfect health’ how long will it take you? You might expect it overnight just by suddenly going to the gym, quit smoking, or stop drinking excessively? Unfortunately, it does not work like that, otherwise, everyone would have perfect health in no time and there would not be a profession in health. The famous saying: ‘Rome wasn’t built in a day’, is particularly applicable in scenarios like these. The reality is that good things take time, our body takes time to change. Research has shown that even working out consistently at the gym, results will not be seen until 3 -6 months later. Additionally, a healthy diet is just as important as working out! You must include all aspects to actually see results! Health is the same, consistent social, physical, and mental habits are the right way to go to develop perfect health. Be patient, trust in the process and everything will fall in its place.

 

Concl.

 

The expectation these days for health is focused on physical appearance. However, having a visually pleasing body doesn’t equate to being on top of things. Being healthy is achieving a balance between social, mental, and physical health. In this modern society, we are expected to do things in a flash and be successful right away. However, in reality, things take time. In the end slow and steady wins the race.

 

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Raising Healthy Children: Tip # 2 How?

By Dr Jennifer Barham-Floreani: How? Take an audit.

Whenever we want to set ourselves a new goal we have to know where we are starting. This allows us to look back in 6 and 12 months time and celebrate how far we have come. It’s hard work being a parent and it’s harder again to a parent who’s committed to healthy habits and rituals. So, it’s important to take stock and appreciate your efforts.

So let’s begin how to audit.

Q: How Much Sugar Do You Each Consume Daily

Without realizing it, most adults and children eat refined sugar for breakfast, lunch and dinner via processed cereals and grains. Most of us consume an average of 53 kg of sugar each year (approximately
29 teaspoons of added and natural sugar each day), and 75 percent comes from the packaged and convenience products we eat and drink.

I’d encourage you to investigate the health risks associated with eating too many sugars (in Lunchbox Solutions I discuss the dangers of sugars and outline what are healthier ways to sweeten recipes, so that’s a great place to start).

There are several reasons should we should avoid sugars, including that they raise our insulin levels. Insulin is a hormone
that our pancreas produces and its main function is taking up blood glucose (sugar) into the cells for energy. High insulin levels are thought to contribute to multiple health issues but for this post where we are focused on raising the health status of our children — let’s keep to three main issues.

Key issues with sugar

1 High insulin levels can depress the immune system weakening our ability to fight disease. This occurs because white blood cells need stacks of vitamin C to kill bacteria and viruses. So our white blood cells work to accumulate
and store vitamin C within the cell. The problem is that vitamin C and glucose have similar chemical structures so they then compete to enter the white blood cells. Guess what happens when we have lots of glucose in our blood from eating lots of foods that contain processed sugars? Glucose wins and our white blood cells become deficient in vitamin C compromising our ability to fight bugs.

2 Too many sugars also upset the integral balance of good and harmful bacteria in the gut. When we consume too many sugars we can create an overgrowth of harmful yeasts and bad bacteria which override our helpful “disease fighting” helpful bacteria — hindering our immune system.

3 Refined sugars also provide us with no vitamins or minerals. In order for them to be metabolized, they draw on the body’s reserves of vitamins and minerals, depleting our body’s nutrients.

ACTION: Start a food diary and observe just how much sugar find there way into your daily diet. Here’s a tip for when looking at products and packaging — sugars tend to be any ingredient ending in “ose” — sucrose, fructose, dextrose, lactose etc. Try it — it will shock you!

Drastically reducing sugar (initially this is not an easy task) not only lightens the load on your child’s immune system it also allows your children to get off the ‘blood-sugar rollercoaster’.

Here’s another tip — cutting back sugar … life just gets better. Sugar highs and lows, make us all irritable and grumpy.

Audit Cont.

Q: How many processed foods are in your pantry, fridge and child’s lunch box?
-Literally count the number of packaged items and take an audit. If a food item has more then 5 or 6 ingredients you can bet it’s refined, altered and damaged. If you can’t pronounce the names of the ingredients in the food item, mostly likely it’s full of chemicals. I’d encourage you to become a food critic and learn what all those numbers and complex sounding ingredients really mean. Please see “Become a Food Critic” and the “Poor Choice, Better Choice and Fabulous Choice” Table in “Empower Their Choices” in Lunchbox Solutions.

Q: How many pieces of fresh fruit and vegetables are you all currently consuming each day?

-Daily consistency is key here.

Q: How many glasses of water do you drink?

Q: What sort of water do you drink?
-And I don’t mean the wet kind. One of the simplest and most important things you can do is invest in a water filter to protect your family against chemically-treated water. Most of our drinking water today contains chlorine and chlorination by-products, as well as numerous other contaminants. Drinking good quality water via a high quality filter system — promotes detoxification, enhances nutritional uptake and ensures optimal hydration.

Help your children develop the habit of drinking water throughout the day rather than juices and soft drinks. A mere two per cent drop in our body’s water supply can trigger signs of dehydration: fuzzy short-term memory, trouble with basic math and difficulty focusing on smaller print, such as a computer screen. Many children are frequently dehydrated, suffering with concentration issues, constipation and digestive problems.

Q: How many prescriptions has your child had in the last twelve months and over their lifetime?
-With regular chiropractic care and addressing these other tips for raising healthy children, many parents delight in no longer relying on antibiotics and instead being able to rely on their child’s own immune strength.

Q: How many sessions of sweaty exercise would each family member perform each week?
-Ideally each of us should be raising our heart rate 5 times a week.

Q: How many harmful chemicals are in your personal care and cleaning products?
-Source brands that are genuinely wholesome — free of nasty chemicals and toxins which are readily absorbed through the skin and tax our body and its defence system.

It can be a “reality slap” to take an audit and look at where you currently sit along the “healthy” and “not so healthy” scale. Where you sit on the “fresh” and “disastrously preserved” scale. Remember though that every moment we make choices and have the opportunity and capacity to influence both our child’s — short and long-term health.

 

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This blog is sponsored by Little Ninja & SPARTAFIT

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Could Cold Showers Be Good For you

It’s time to make friends with the cold. It may be hard to believe but there are quite a few benefits to having a cold shower. The idea of using cold water as a therapy has been around for thousands of years. Even after the Greeks developed running hot water for bathing they would still use cold bathing as a mental and physical therapy. Taking a dunk in an icy lake after a sauna is a common activity in Finland and the other Scandinavian countries and Rickson Gracie, a legend in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, would often sit in cold water as part of his training and recovery.

So what benefits might you gain from such a masochistic activity?

 

Physical benefits

 

The Thrombosis Research Institute of England put out a study with some evidence linking the increase in metabolism due to the body fighting the cold to a stimulation of the immune system, increasing white blood cell activity. The same study also indicates an increase in testosterone. A hormone essential for particularly for men in regard to libido, fertility, strength and energy, but also an essential hormone for similar reason in women.

Many athletes use various cold therapies to aid recovery and reduce inflammation caused by their training. Alternating between hot and cold in the shower can aid circulation. Because, cold water causes your body to restrict blood flow and send it to your organs and away from your extremities and hot water does the opposite.

Taking a cold shower daily can be a cheap (or should I say free) and less harmful (please read the warning at the end) than regularly taking anti-inflammatory pills if you suffer from chronic pain and inflammation.

 

Get started

 

I recommend you start by having a normal shower. Over the course of a week spend the final 15 seconds in a progressively cooler temperature until you are using the coldest possible water.

Then go from spending 15 seconds to 30, then 45, then 1 minute and so on. I have found that once you get used to the cold it is no longer a shock to your body. Then you can start to actually look forward to the cold!

An extra bonus is that you can save on your water bill as I guarantee you won’t be spending as long in the shower!

BE WARNED: if you suffer from heart disease or high blood pressure then this may not be for you. The shock of using cold water can put extra strain on the heart. Please take extra caution and try doing progressively cooler showers instead of going straight to cold.

 

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164-365 (Year 6) Cold shower :( | My shower runs cold, a plu… | Flickr

Celery Juice Health Benefits

Introduction

The juice of fresh raw celery is loaded with a variety of nutrients. It contains almost all essential vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and stocked up energy, which help in regulating the natural as well as optimal functions of our body collectively. Please keep in mind that I highly recommend using organic/spray free celery as regular celery can have high amounts of pesticides.

 

Celery juice

 

Here is a list of health benefits of celery juice:

 

1. Prevents Cancer:

Keep cancer at bay by drinking celery juice every day. There are 8 types of anti-cancer substances present in the juice that can heal cancer in a number of ways. The acetylenic content of the juice prevents the tumor cells from growing, the phonolic acid content makes the hormone-like prostaglandins (accelerates the growth of cancerous cells) inactive, the phyto nutrient content stops free radicals from destroying the DNA of our cells, and so on.

 

2. Lowers Cholesterol:

Celery juice is an excellent natural remedy for lowering the cholesterol levels in our body. It contains a chemical compound named 3-n-butylphthalide that has positive effects on reducing the bad cholesterol (low-density lipoprotein) in our bloodstream. It also boosts the secretion of bile or steroid acids which is helpful in lowering cholesterol too. The juice extracted only from 2 stalks of celery can decrease our cholesterol levels up to 7 points.

 

3. Controls Blood Pressure:

If you drink 1 glass of celery juice each day, you will be able to keep your blood pressure levels under control. It is again the effects of 3-n-butylphthalide, which diminishes the secretion of stress hormones and relaxes the muscles present around our blood vessels so that they get dilated and blood can flow through them smoothly without causing much pressure onto their inner walls.

 

4. Prevents Digestive Disorders:

Celery juice has great potential to cure various digestive disorders. It contains lots of fibers which turn the plant into a laxative one. Fibers discharge certain nutrients during the preparation of juice and prevent constipation by making the bowel movement smoother.

 

5. Prevents Calcification:

Fresh celery juice is also useful in averting calcification inside our gall bladder, urinary bladder and kidneys. As it can remove waste as well as toxic materials from these organs, the stones present within these get broken down and eliminated easily.

 

6. Maintains Acid-Base Balance:

Studies have shown that very few foods are as powerful as celery juice in maintaining the acid-base balance in our body. It reduces the acidity and makes our body alkaline to some extent so that the pH levels remain good.

 

7. Anti- Inflammatory Action:

Celery juice is highly anti-inflammatory. It holds an organic compound named polyacetylene, which inhibits acute inflammation in bone diseases like osteoarthritis, gout, rheumatoid arthritis, etc. and respiratory disorders like bronchitis, asthma, etc.

 

8. Diuretic:

Being a good diuretic, celery juice facilitates the production of urine and helps us stay healthy. Basically, the two essential minerals – sodium and potassium – present in the juice act as the regulators of our body fluid, thereby promoting urination.

 

9. Aids In Weight Loss:

Shedding extra weight also becomes easy and hassle-free with the regular intake of celery juice. It is extremely low in calories and very filling at the same time. Therefore, it keeps our appetite under check and helps us lose weight successfully.

 

10. Treats Insomnia:

Sleep disorder or insomnia can also be treated effectively with celery juice. The magnesium as well as essential oil content of the juice imposes a soothing effect on our nerves and. As a result, we can relax and enjoy a sound sleep.

 

Benefits of Celery Juice for Skin:

Celery juice can contribute to our skin to a great extent. It works as a wonderful alternative to synthetic beauty products available in the market. Explore the skin benefits of celery juice below:

 

11. Hydrates Skin:

The juice extracted from celery is high in water as 95% of the weight of the plant is water. Hence, drinking celery juice in a regular manner can fulfil our daily requirements of water and keeps our skin cells hydrated. As a result, we get soft and supple skin.

 

12. Prevents Skin Damage And Other Disorders:

Water and antioxidant content of the juice is also good for purifying our body and making our skin clearer. Antioxidants are basically ‘free radical scavengers’, which make our body free from toxins and prevent our skin cells from getting damaged. On the other hand, water facilitates the elimination of those toxins as well as other waste materials from our body. Consequently, we can stay away from a number of skin disorders.

 

13. Keeps Skin Young:

Celery juice is loaded with vitamin A, B, C, K, niacin and folate, which are essential for repairing skin damages as well as keeping up the health of our skin. These vitamins also help in producing collagen and nourishing our skin. Therefore, we get smooth, young and wrinkle-free skin.

 

14. Ensures Glowing Skin:

There are numerous minerals present in celery juice. These include calcium, potassium, magnesium, selenium, and so on. Regular intake of these minerals can result into bright and glowing skin.

 

Benefits of Celery Juice for Hair:

Not only health or skin, but celery juice is rewarding for our hair also. Several ways through which this juice can benefit your tresses are given below:

 

15. Over-all Hair Care:

It has been already mentioned that celery juice comprises high amount of water and vitamin A. Both are great for our hair. Water keeps our scalp hydrated and cures dandruff, while vitamin A provides nourishment to the roots of hair strands and makes them healthy. Celery juice is also known to stimulate the growth of our hair and improve its texture. Hence, if you want lush and beautiful hair, consider daily intake of celery juice.

 

Looking for a Chiropractor in Auckland?

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