Featured-image- smiling-middle-aged-couple-on beach-for-website

Begin with me — It’s a journey, not a destination. It’s about a process, not an outcome. It’s about being ‘alive’ not just living. What might it be like if you truly felt ‘vibrant’ and ‘alive’ not just occasionally, but throughout your life – decade after decade?

Perhaps the catalyst that propels most of us towards healthy living is a major one like the diagnosis of a life-threatening illness, or as minor as the passing remark of a stranger.  Nevertheless, when the right conditions prevail, seeds of change germinate in all of us sooner or later & we prepare ourselves for the road to health.  Once you have made the choice to move in the direction of optimum health and vitality you will begin to feel in control of your life & take responsibility for your own health and healing.

Change your diet

To begin with stop eating white flour.  That includes rumali roti, naan, white bread and all other foods made from maida.  It is a depleted food.  It borrows more nutrients from your body in order to get metabolized.  Switch to whole wheat bread instead of white bread, brown rice instead of white rice, soya milk instead of whole milk. Snack on sprouts, roasted whole channa instead of farsan & fried snacks.  Eat whole fruits instead of juice concentrates. Eat whole grains like jowar, bajri, naachini & whole pluses.

Detoxify regularly

Inner cleansing or detoxification is a process of clearing toxins from the body thereby cleansing it of mucus and congestion. It makes you feel energized, light and revitalized.  It is important as an overall lifestyle and needs specific dietary changes. It is an important tool in treating obesity, as obesity is always associated with toxicity. Almost everyone needs to detoxify from time to time. Some of us who lead a life of excesses, and those who eat excessively at night, need to detox more frequently (twice a year). Others with toxicity symptoms like headaches, congestion, backaches, digestive problems, allergies will benefit greatly by detoxification.

Get in Shape

Eat food with a new approach.  Look at its nutrient density rather than it caloric value. For example, almonds, pumpkin seeds, & peanuts though rich in calories contain beneficial oils and a full range of nutrients that improve your health. They do not cause weight gain if eaten in moderation. While eating less fat is good, eating oil-free diets may deprive your body of fat soluble vitamins and also affect your menstrual cycle. Eating less sugar is beneficial but consuming large quantities of artificially sweetened dessert will cause more toxic overload in the body.  By learning to make the right food choices, coupled with a 40 min brisk walk, we can begin a healing process unlike any other. Most diseases are a result of toxic overload. When you overeat denatured foods, which are improperly prepared, over fried, boiled to death, refried, containing artificial flavours and preservatives, your body gets filled with toxic wastes and all this upsets your digestion. In spite of being aware of this, abstaining from such food is unpleasant for most people. When you begin eating healthily, drink vegetable juices, eat freshly prepared food and snack on nuts, seeds, fruits and juices, you will develop a healthy immune system, which can add meaningful years to your life and help delay the aging process.

Control Stress

It begins with the mind. A youthful state has more to do with what’s going on in your mind than with what’s going on in your body. Each one of us participates consciously or unconsciously in creating our own illnesses. Your attitude towards life shapes your health and looks. Some people remain calm and collected under most situations. Stress has little impact on the physical and mental health of such people. There are others who get irritated over small issues like traffic jams, loud music, delayed breakfasts, waiting for appointments etc. Ordinary day to day events seem to be very stressful to such individuals. They are more prone to stress related conditions like high blood pressure, migraine, eczema, insomnia, backache, muscle pain, etc. Stress eventually wears out the body.

Role of relationships

Try to develop loving relationships with your family, friends, spouse, pets – anyone! Love is rejuvenating. It makes life meaningful. It has healing energy. It is a powerful stimulant to the immune system. People who bond well with family and friends feel contented and are better equipped to fight disease. The act of giving and receiving love, acts as a shield from the stressors of life and prevents needless aging. A loving relationship with anyone – even plants and pets is good for longevity and youthfulness.

Stop negative thinking

Negative thoughts make you take negative action, which brings about negative reactions from others. This increases stress in your life. Negative thinking can make you depressed and look old. Every time you become negative, consciously shift your thoughts. Alternatively go for a walk on the beach or in a garden or tend to your plants at home.  Connect with nature. It helps dissolve negativity.

Stop smoking

Stub out that cigarette! This is probably the single best thing you can do to stay young and healthy.They say, that middle age is—when your age starts to show around the middle! Why not have a flat belly and stay young for as long as you wish to!

(As published in Hindustan Times dated March 16, 2020)

March 16, 2020

Leave a reply