Today, EverBeautiful welcomes Trevor McDonald as a guest blogger. Trevor’s personal journey through addiction and recovery has spurred him to learn about health and wellness and to share his knowledge with others. Here, his advice for achieving your healthiest body and mind …
A healthy body means a lot more than looking fantastic in a swimsuit or trunks. It means taking a holistic approach that includes exercise, strength training, eating well, taking supplements and avoiding bad habits. No diet can give you an adequate intake of vitamins and minerals along with moderate portions of fat, carbs, and sugars—at least not within reasonable caloric ranges. Still, it takes the right grease to create the right machine.
Making smart, healthy choices is something to prioritize daily. You’ll have slips and we all have vices that are tough to control. However, there are healthy swaps to make, like picking up the darkest chocolate you can find instead of the sugar-laden milk chocolate alternatives.
Here are six ways to start building a healthier body and mind today:
- Drink Your Water
Water doesn’t just improve your skin; it can also help you eat less. Aim for 99 – 128 ounces of water per day. Drink a full bottle before every meal to fill yourself up and eat less if you’re struggling with fat loss. (The jury is still out on how much water you actually should drink per day, although about 64 ounces is the currently accepted norm. Many in the medical community say how much you should drink is a factor of your weight, activity level and even the humidity level in the air. See my post on The Benefits of Drinking Water. – ML)
- There’s a Pill for That
Working with a naturopathic doctor is a great way to start a supplement regimen. You can get tested to see where you’re deficient, consider if there are healthy foods that can help you, or determine that a supplement is best for you. A multi-vitamin geared towards your gender, needs, and age is a great start.
Cinnamon is an excellent Chinese choice to help regulate blood sugar levels and help diabetes. Vitamin K helps those suffering from dark under-eye circles. Garlic and fish oil help brain functioning. Ginseng and turmeric are excellent immunity boosters. (Want to learn more about supplementation? Read my post on Anti-Aging Advice from Healthy Aging Expert, Paula Simpson. – ML)
3. Building Muscle
Your muscles start to atrophy (sarcopenia) as soon as you start slipping from your peak. For most people, this is in your late 20s or early 30s. Having strong muscles is critical as you age and can help prevent broken bones and atrophy not to mention helping you to look your best. Everyone needs both a daily cardio and strengthening regimen in order to optimize their health.
Body builders often take protein supplements to help repair and build muscles. However, it’s important to know if a high-protein diet works for you. Too much protein is devastating to those with kidney disease. Get a check-up with a doctor before starting any new diet, exercise routine, or taking any new supplements to ensure that your body is a good match for the change.
- Consider Your Alcohol Intake
The few benefits alcohol may have, such as red wine for the heart, usually aren’t worth the risks. Remember, alcohol can cause serious damage to the body in excess. Although everyone enjoys a fun night out, alcohol abuse is never good. It can cause serious damage to the body like liver damage in the long-term, and of course decreased inhibitions can be problematic in the short-term.
- Get Your Quiet Time
Unplugging and shutting down, whether it’s via meditation or a tech-free walk in the park, is vital for mental clarity and well-being. Getting outdoors and away from stressors can decrease blood pressure, inspire creativity, fight depression, and give you an energy boost. Plus, it’s much healthier than reaching for more coffee. (Read more about the benefits of being outdoors here – ML)
- Find Creative Outlets
Your mind craves creativity, and it comes in many forms. Try journaling, sketching, dance, or another creative approach that lets you tap into a different side of your brain than is often required for daily life. Working both right and left sides of the brain helps keep your mind healthy and active.
Prioritizing your overall health should be, and can be, part of your daily routine. It’s one little step or change at a time, and these six are a great way to get started.
About the Author
Trevor is a freelance writer and recovering addict & alcoholic who has been clean and sober for over 5 years. Since his recovery began he has enjoyed using his talent for words to help spread treatment resources and addiction awareness. In his free time, you can find him working with recovering addicts or outside enjoying about any type of fitness activity imaginable.
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