Here’s the deal ... None of us ever want to be sick. But I wonder, are you the type of person who moves through your life waiting for the next sickness to hit you, or are you the type of person who moves through your life with purpose, providing your body the greatest amount of power to either avoid sicknesses that come your way or be able to recover quickly should one breakthrough? Often, we live in a culture of reaction to things that happen to us rather than preparing for what may come our way. Preventative medicine is a tool that allows a person to give their body and mind the best opportunity to deal with whatever comes your way. Typically, when a person is healthy and well, they move through the routine of their lives and tend to the daily tasks in a routine way. Inevitably, at some point, along comes a sickness and shakes up that routine. What if part of that daily routine during healthy periods of life included regular activities that lend themselves to longevity in health and wellness? Here are some things that you could do on the regular to ensure support for your body and mind, allowing for longevity, health and wellness, as well as preparedness for when the next sickness arrives. 1. SLEEP. Sleep is so important to the recovery of the body and the building of important aspects of immunity. Regular sleep patterns that allow a person to go to bed between 10 and 11 PM and rise between 6 and 8 AM provide optimal rest and recovery time. Sometimes a person goes to sleep and wakes up within that time frame, but has trouble maintaining sleep through the night or waking feeling refreshed and recovered. In these cases, a person may need a little assist to have more quality sleep. Keeping devices out of the bedroom, light reading of non-inflaming material before bed, meditation, breathing exercises or even Acupuncture could help make the transition into sleep and the quality of sleep be more restorative. 2. FOOD. The type of food we eat, the quantity, and when we eat it matters. Now, just stick with me here, because I’m not saying it’s salads all day every day. In fact, I don’t really advocate for salads often at all. Eating quality food matters. So, leaning on more fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and quality proteins, more than breads, pastas, fast food will greatly improve the functionality and overall health and wellness of your body and brain power. Additionally, eating the correct portion size helps to avoid digestive issues, like bloating, sluggishness, excess gas, and the like. Finally, not eating in a hurry, too close to bedtime or when you are feeling stressed greatly improves digestion and nutrient uptake from the food you do eat. And let's talk about drinks here too. Can we do warm water and teas with less sugary beverages or alcohol?? 3. MOVEMENT. You have to move your body every day. If you have a job that is more physical and its nature, your body is accustomed to that movement, and it doesn’t count. Go for a leisurely walk after dinner, do some light stretching at the end of your day to balance the regular routine and pattern of movement from your work. You don’t always have to go to a gym or be doing difficult movement for it to be beneficial for your body, but you do need to be doing 20 to 30 minutes of movement daily. This allows the body to you release tension, move food through the digestive system, and maintain range of motion and muscle mass to support the activity of life. 4. SELF CARE SUPPORT. Often times we visit chiropractors, massage therapists, acupuncturists and other medical professionals only when something goes wrong. These medical professionals are the people you want on your team even when nothing is going wrong. A regular visit scheduled every 4 to 6 weeks, regardless of whether there is a problem, is a fantastic way to keep your body and mind from getting stuck or rundown and susceptible to sickness. In the same way that you maintain your vehicle for optimal driving by adding gas, having oil changes or adding new tires, your body and mind need that same regular maintenance even when there’s nothing noticeably wrong. So, reach out to your chiropractor, massage therapist, acupuncturist and/or osteopathic practitioner, and set up those wellness visits on a regular schedule.
5. GET OUTSIDE. Fresh air and sunshine are great ways to "blow off the stink" as my grandmother always says. We spend so much of our time indoors in artificial air and light. Fresh air and natural light from the sun are some of the best medicine for mental, emotional and physical wellbeing. Read that book outdoors for an hour two. Find a trail to explore and look at the flowers and trees blooming around you. Do your meditation practice sitting in the grass. It's easy to move some of those relaxation tasks outside to soak up some sun and breath some fresh air. Do remember if you are going to be out during peak sun hours to give your skin a little protection with a good quality, non-toxic sunscreen. I love Sunbum if you need a recommendation.
I think you’ll find with consistent attention to a more preventative mindset in these small but important ways, you will experience longevity in your overall health and wellness. In addition, you may just find a new strength to weather any sickness that may break through the defenses you’ve built through your preventative measures.
Michelle Stobart has offered health and wellness treatment through therapeutic-minded care for over 18 years. In 2021, she graduated with honors from the American Institute of Alternative Medicine and is now an Ohio Board Certified and Licensed Acupuncturist. She is a certified Yoga Therapist through the International Association of Yoga Therapists and has achieved the highest certification of E-RYT 500 with Yoga Alliance. She bring her many years of continuing education and experience in breathwork, body mechanics, mindfulness and holistic wellness to create a multi-disciplined approach to support the health and healing journey of her patients. She has a deep love of nature, and in her free time, you can find her on the water paddling, swimming or snorkeling.