Okay, so this post may be an interesting one. I have been looking into what 'experts' & the media tell us is a 'healthy' way to live our lives to maximise our health in our 20's.
Being 26.. I felt I should look into this age group.
As you all know I am trying to challenge my body at little. Fed up with playing safe & being maybe over curious I decided to push my body a little.
BUT what do the 'experts ', say?
I am no dietician, I am just a girl trying to live the best life she can & create as much happiness as possible.
This advice we must add is based on 'healthy' 20 something's but it doesn't mean that chronic illness sufferers can't relate or take some advice.
A good relationship with alcohol.
Knowing your limits, not abusing it, drinking too much or too often.
Okay, so we have that ticked. I don't often drink at all & if I do its one or two because I know it's not great for my Lyme yet when it is my birthday or Christmas I want to enjoy myself a little. Is that a crime? I don't feel I fall down on this point.
2. Don't consume too much 'fast' food or food on the go.
OK, again! When I am out with friends and family I don't eat the heathiest I will admit BUT let's be real, I am NOT OUT EVERY WEEKEND. We can probably say I would (not in lockdown) but normally eat out on an average 3 times a month.
3. Watch your potassium levels.
So, I like a little bit of rock salt on my veggies, salads and peanut butter but we aren't pouring it on ( let's be real!) I cook all my food more or less from fresh so when I am at home ( I think we are good!) I have no control when I am out and about but again it's rare & I don't add salt to already seasoned food.
4. Get enough sleep.
OKAY, so this is where we begin to SIN badly. SLEEP.. it's like the Holy Grail. We crave it, we wish for it but it feels unreachable. 8 hour a night -- I WISH. Chronic pain guys, you don't get a break. You don't get a holiday. We have had a good night if I have had 4 hours sleeps. According to the experts ( as I think we all know - restores & recharges our bodies as well as promoting the detoxing process it. )
5. Stay away from tobacco.
We have ac'ed this, will never smoke and have never smoked.
Tobacco reduces collagen production and increases aging ten fold.
6. Eat your veggies!
YAY... we have well and truly got this covered. I know the amazing natural healers veggies are. Experts advise 6 serving of fruit & veg a day to give your body a good dose of vitamins and minerals to heal the body and protect it. WE HAVE THIS COVERED.
7. Reduce screen time.
Experts advise 'screen fasting. ' I can understand where they are coming from. I get wiped out every day because I AM SICK OF LOOKING AT MY SCREEN. I feel exhausted, run down & brain fried. When you are running your business online & it's so focused on social media this 'screen fast is difficult.' I have tried to stop using social media in the evening & ACTUALLY watch TV rather than be on my phone constantly. Especially when I start as early on socials around 8am and throughout the day are constantly phone & computer focused. So, on this point I definitely fall down.
8. Move your body more but not harder.
So, I am no gym bunny. Compared to my old swimmer self I feel VERY lazy now. I do understand the importance of moving your body though. Not just for your mental health but physical health too.
I need to keep moving otherwise my joints do stiffen up & the pain is NOT pleasant. I also do a lot of stretching for my stomach & so my muscles don't tighten up from sitting so much.
I do TRY to get out on a walk every day. At first I did this to try a lower pain levels but as time has gone on I've realised it really helps my mental health. It is my 20-30 mins a day with my music on or a podcast where I just lose myself for a minute. Stress, panic, work at the back of my mind. It really is helpful.
The experts say gentle exercise is better than hard exercise as you don't want to be causing injury to your body. You also don't want to make it the worst part of you day.
9. Prioritise gut health!
Now, now, now - let's not come down to hard on me. I know I am currently adding further stress to my already dyer gut but long term I am hoping it will help me, help my gut. We just ( like with anything ) will have to learn so we can improve & grow.
I can FULLY understand where the 'experts' are coming from here. My gut makes my life a MISERY!! It is hardtop manage & causes me a lot of pain & upset on a daily basis.
They advise you eat your probiotics like yoghurts and so forth & plenty of veggies. Which again, I do, do but chronic illness doesn't follow the health rules my friends.
10. Ditch diets.
YES TO THIS, diets have the world 'die' in them so I have never been a fan but the argument is here that constantly being on some form of 'trendy' diet confuses your body & leads to all sorts of problems down the road. You are constantly adding, taking things away from your body so it doesn't know how to function to the best of it's ability.
BUT when you have a chronic illness or health problem often you have to ensure you cut certain foods / add certain foods into your every day eating / living to keep you healthy. I think this is not an angle they are getting at. It is more the yo-yo diets and the 'fad' diet that everyone is on which they want you to stay clear of.
We have to learn to listen to our bodies and know what it needs. We are all unique. As we clearly show an example of RIGHT HERE, RIGHT NOW. What Sarah down the road at 23, maybe a long distance runner, fit with no health problems needs compared to me would be totally different. So, don't get caught up in comparison cycles.
11 Mental health matters!
I agree with this totally. We are bombarded by media constantly telling us, what we should look like, where we should be in our lives, what we should be doing etc! It is exhausting and tiring. We doubt ourselves we are hard on ourselves. Often leading us to neglect and run from the pain caused through our mental health.
I love the quote that good mental health isn't a privilege it is a key essential. Remember how strong your mind is and how it dominates your life. Make sure it is having a good influence on your life & wellbeing.
So, how do gain a healthier mindset & improve our mental health?
by cutting out things in our lives that cause us pain. Whether this is people, objects, habits, work and so on. We are allowed to outgrown and evolve.
taking time OUT. Taking time for you and doing thing YOU enjoy. Whether this is playing sport, listening to music, baking and so on.
consume 'feel good' & positive content don't soak up negative content.
resting & taking time off.
Just to name a few. Your mental health is so important. Mine isn't brilliant, far from it & it is something I am working on because I know in so many way my inner critic holds me back SO much.
12. Learn to cook!
YES, I love cooking and baking & I have my Mum to thank for this. I totally agree here though. Cooking is a life skill and doesn't just help you improve your diet & how you fuel your body but also helps your mental health as so many people find it enjoyable and calming.
I love cooking and baking. I adore trialling different recipes & having fun.