It is a brand new year, which means you are most likely being bombarded with all the newest diet trends to help lose weight, the juice cleanses to detoxify your liver, and all the kill yourself in the gym 6 days a week workout regiments.
If you have been around here for a while, you know that I don’t subscribe to any of the above and that I believe more in building healthy habits that last than resolutions that are designed to fail.
I believe that the best time to start making better choices to improve your health and wellness is today – in fact right now. There is nothing magical about January 1st or Mondays. You can start right now by committing to going to bed an hour earlier, drinking an extra glass of water, or spending 3-5 minutes outside watching the sunset.
There is so much information out there, so much noise when it comes to health and wellness. If you are brand new to wanting to make lasting changes that will benefit yourself, your family, and the generations after you – I want to encourage you to start with the basics and build on the foundations. Never underestimate the power of every small step, because all these small steps lead to one giant leap with a profound impact.
11 Healthy Tips To Kickstart Your New Year
1. Prioritize your life to go to bed by 9 pm every night. Sleep is one of the most understated pillars of health. Sleeping is the body’s prime time to heal, rest, restore, and detoxify. A lack of sleep is very taxing on the brain and adrenals – this can cause blood sugar imbalance and inflammation which can lead to migraines. Be intentional to get at least 7-9 hours of sleep each night, and stick to a consistent bedtime and wake-up time every day – this is one of the simplest health puzzle pieces. If you are having sleep troubles, you can troubleshoot here.
2. Replace vegetable oils with saturated fats. The body has this amazing ability to produce cannabinoids from healthy animal fats in the diet. Healthy fats are necessary for hormone production, it supports the nervous system, and protects the liver from toxins just to name a few. Healthy saturated fats also play a well-known role in healthy weight loss. You can learn more about all the fantastic roles of fat here, the best fats for cooking and baking here, and busting some fat myths here.
3. Eliminate the use of toxic candles, air fresheners, and plug-ins. Did you know that there are numerous studies that prove that the indoor air quality of most houses and buildings is worse than outside air quality? It is therefore very important to determine sources of air pollution in your home. The main culprits that I see when working with clients are conventional candles, air fresheners, and those fragrance plug-ins. These products are extremely toxic to your health – you can learn more here. I always recommend replacing these products with safer alternatives like beeswax candles, diffusing essential oils, or an essential oil-based air fresher like Primally Pure.
4. Prioritize cooking meals at home. Cooking at home is probably the number one way to improve your overall health and wellbeing. When we cook at home, we are able to control all the ingredients that we use in our cooking and therefore eat. This has become increasingly heard when eating the Standard American Diet, or eating out often – all sorts of inflammatory oils, toxic chemicals, and synthetic additives lurks in most restaurant and packaged foods. Make cooking fun, light a couple of candles, play some music, use color, smell the fragrance of real food, invite your family into the kitchen with you.
5. Switch your favorite fruits and vegetables to organic. In this modern age, it is extremely important to lower your toxic load. This may seem slightly overwhelming, but a simple way of doing this is by simply switching your favorite fruits and vegetables that you eat often to organic. Most conventional produce is heavily sprayed with toxic herbicides and pesticides like glyphosate. By switching to organic, you are significantly reducing your exposure to these toxins. If you want more you can always use the Environmental Working Groups Clean Fifteen and Dirty Dozen List – this is simply a list of produce with the least and the most amount of pesticides after testing. It is a fantastic resource.
6. Support drainage. What do I mean by drainage? Drainage is simply the body’s natural pathways that allow the body to move fluids, toxins, and pathogens out of the body. This is actually pretty simple – support the colon by making sure to have 1-2 well-formed bowel movements a day, support your mitochondria by prioritizing sleep and time out in the sunshine, support the lymphatic system with dry brushing and incorporating consistent movement, support the liver/gallbladder with coffee enemas and healthy fats, support the kidneys by staying hydrated, and support the brain by prioritizing sleep, and if consuming grains making sure they are properly prepared.
7. Make your treats at home using real ingredients. I believe in making cookies and eating them too – that is the beauty of a nourishing healthy lifestyle – there are no restrictions and no deprivation. It is actually quite simple – all you need to do is either find a real food ingredient recipe or simply substitute the ingredients in your favorite family recipes with real food alternatives. Here are a few real food desserts to get you started.
8. Stay hydrated. Drinking ½ your weight in ounces a day is a great goal. Proper hydration is really important for the endocrine system. Without the right amount of water (and minerals), the body can’t transport all the necessary nutrients and hormones to the cells properly. It is essential to make sure that you drink plenty of clean filtered water each day.
I love adding a pinch of sea salt to my water to help with replenishing and balancing minerals.
9. Eat a nutrient-dense breakfast within one hour of waking. This is one of the easiest and most beneficial things you can do. I know this is very counter-cultural – but stop for a moment and think about it logically. Your body has been fasting since your last meal (hopefully dinner,) so this means your body has been relying on the liver’s glucose stores for 10+ hours. When you skip breakfast (or any meal for that matter) the body’s coping mechanism is to increase the production of stress hormones – this enables the body to catabolize its own tissues (yes, literally eating itself) in order to create energy. This process is a backup plan for emergencies – you can’t run on a backup generator forever.
10. Replace table salt for Icelandic sea salt. Salt and sodium can be such a controversial topic, but there is well-established evidence that sodium is crucial for optimal health. Table salt is a highly processed food that lacks natural minerals, is made with genetically modified corn, contains anti-caking agents, and is bleached – there is clearly nothing healthy about this food. Icelandic sea salt on the other hand is robust in a large variety of essential trace minerals, unaltered, pure, and flavorful. All of my clients experience a lot of health improvements by doing this one simple thing.
Minerals are responsible for so many functions in the body – immune and bone health, cell function, etc.
11. Reduce your toxic load. In the year 2022 reducing our toxic load is no longer a luxury but is becoming a necessity. We are being inundated with so many toxins daily, so it is my advice to educate yourself on environmental toxins. Start with basic things like making sure you are no longer drinking tap water, and then move on to replacing synthetic skincare and body care items with safer alternatives. You can find my favorite safer skincare and clean beauty suggestions here, my non-toxic living here.
My 2022 be there year that you radically heal and take charge of your health and wellness!
Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.
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