We may have read a lot of web posts about health. We may have devoured several magazine tips on proper health and fitness. We may have asked for nutritional and fitness advice from a doctor or a health practitioner. We may have done 100 push ups in 2 minutes, ran 2.4 kilometers in 10 minutes and did 10 pullups in 2 minutes, or may have ran a half-marathon. On the nutrition side, we may have the perfect diet, and removed soda drinks from our habits :). So we think we know what we need to do already? Probably. But are we practicing what we learned? Vast amount of knowledge is useless unless being used to make our lives and other people’s lives better.
Without so much ado, here’s some good health practices that we may be ignoring:
Sleep – if you search the web (because not to many goes to the library anymore but instead use google and wikipedia), you find that in the U.S., a lot of people now are getting much less sleep than 30 years ago. In developing countries, some workers wake up very early to avoid traffic and go home late due to traffic. That results in less sleep.
Rest – some of us feel guilty when we sit idle and not doing anything. We shouldn’t because that’s the time when the brain tries to refresh itself free from the constant bombardment of information or analysis. It is actually during time of rest and sleep that the brain regenerates the cells to be stronger and ready for the next day’s onslaught of stress.
Fat – fat is used in cell to insulate some body parts and also as energy reserves. It is also used for proper hormones processing and as actual source of energy. Monounsaturated fats (source: olive oil, walnuts, etc.) are actually good for the body. Benefits include less arthritic pain in the joints (I actually experienced this), weight loss, lower cholesterol levels and lower risk for heart disease and stroke.
Light exercise – my personal favorite is walking. This doesn’t require any equipment or a pool or a court. Any exercise is good. You may be using a stretch band or kettlebells or even a broomstick and that’s OK. As long as you are doing something to bring your heart rate up a little bit and you are breathing a little harder. This improves your circulation, makes your metabolic processes more efficient, and gives you a sense of exhilaration.
I’m sure we’re all aware of most of the above items. I won’t mention benefits of eating more fruits (tomatoes, cucumbers and squashes are fruits, by the way) and vegetables, because I am sure this is a very common knowledge already. Or eating much less pork and beef, but rather chicken and fish for the same reason.
I mentioned the above to make us all aware again of the benefits of some of the things that we may be ignoring. It would be helpful to us if we are aware of what we may be taking for granted.
Here’s to your health!