Sometimes you just know you’re not quite completely healthy
If you are not feeling completely healthy, instead of focusing on a symptom (what you view as the problem), stop and consider searching for the root cause of your health decline.
I believe God gave us amazing, glorious bodies. Each year, scientists are adding to our knowledge about the intricate details of our physical bodies. There is so much new information about biology at a cellular level and how these complex processes contribute to every aspect, (physical, emotional, mental) of our health. Unfortunately, in our modern times, we cannot help but be exposed to toxins, pathogens, improper diets, inadequate nutrients, and stress. Our bodies lose their God-given luster for true health and full potential.
When illness strikes, the body goes into survival mode. I have learned that when you identify the root causes of inflammation, you have a starting point on which to concentrate your efforts to improve your health and get well.
Trying to get to the root of your health problems is like a big puzzle. There are many small pieces to consider that contribute to the whole picture. Illness can be due to many things: hidden infections, unknown poision exposure, unmanaged stress, any number of nutrient deficiencies, or a genetic predisposition to being sensitive to all kinds of toxic environmental exposures.
You’ve got to start somewhere, so here are my top 5 strategies to help improve your health:
- FOOD – You will get the biggest bang for your buck by starting with your diet. Begin by eating more “real” food. Whole foods are those that have little processing and are abundant sources of nutrients. Real whole foods are fresh or frozen fruits and vegetables. Make it a goal to try a new fruit or vegetable every week. Each and every kind of vegetable or fruit you can get your hands on will provide its own unique nutrient profile. This one step alone will increase your nutritional intake and help your health in more ways than you can imagine.
- Choose ORGANIC food when possible. Yes, it is worth the cost. By buying labeled “organic” fruits and vegetables, you will be decreasing your intake of pesticides and other harmful chemicals. And when possible, choose Non-GMO, Grass-Fed meat. It really will make a difference in reducing the number of toxins you consume. Follow the Environmental Working Group’s suggestions for the Clean Fifteen & Dirty Dozen Shoppers Guide to pesticides in produce. https://www.ewg.org/foodnews/#.Whh2Uk3ruUk
- WATER – Give up drinking out of plastic bottles. Plastic bottles have harmful chemicals that leach into the water and create a faux estrogen effect on the body. Whether the plastic is BPA free or not, the chemicals soak into water, then we drink the chemicals. Exposure to these “estrogen-like” chemicals can cause cancer, wreck havoc with sex-hormones, affect those trying to get pregnant or lose weight, and many other ill effects. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25775505 Better yet, drink and cook with filtered water. Identify the contaminants in your home tap water. Have your water evaluated and consider getting a water filter. If you used well-water, the water could be high in nitrates. https://www.cdc.gov/healthywater/drinking/private/wells/disease/nitrate.html Even when using city water, water filters are a good idea.
- VITAMINS and MINERALS! Consider nutrient supplementation. There is abundant research indicating nutrients like vitamin C, Vitamin D, Zinc, Omega 3, and probiotics can help calm down your immune response. Get tested for micronutrient deficiencies. Your Registered Dietitian can help you in getting these test. SpectraCell has an excellent check to evaluate your nutrient levels. https://www.spectracell.com/patients/patient-micronutrient-testing/
- HEAL your gut. When your gastrointestinal lining is impaired, your immune system will also be damaged, leaving you open to illness. Over 70% of the immune system is located in your gut. The best way to start healing your gut involves eating a whole food, anti-inflammatory diet. This often requires removal of gluten, possibly removing dairy and other individualized food additives which cause food sensitivities, to allow the gut to heal.
Next up, Get tested
- Do you have a family history or symptoms for Celiac? Get a screening test for Celiac disease. Any doctor can order a simple blood test called the Celiac Panel. This test is a screening tool to determine if you may have Celiac disease (an autoimmune intestinal disease). New on the market is an in-home Celiac test kit. Click this link to find out more:https://imaware.health/?aff=9
- Consider testing for Food Sensitivities. Food reactions can happen 72 hours after eating food. How would you ever figure that out? The best practice is to have an MRT test as a starting place to determine potential food sensitivities. A Registered Dietitian who is a Certified LEAP Therapist can help you every step of the way in this process. Click here to find out more: https://nowleap.com/what-is-meant-by-leaky-gut/
- Think about metal exposure from throughout your life and checked for heavy metal toxicity. Even burning candles in your home, consumption of pestiside residue in foods, and inhaling fumes when getting gas, add up, and create heavy metal overload in the body. Also, if you have a tattoo you may have a metal toxicity issue. Mercury, lead, and other metals can be risk factors for autoimmunity. This is an especially important test if you are having blood sugar issues.
- Look for hidden infections. Consider your symptoms and the possibility of long-standing, chronic Lyme disease, Candida-yeast infection or other bacteria and/or viruses. Any of these can be a play a huge role in decreasing our ability to get well. This strategy is especially important to consider if you have traveled out of the U.S. or have ever visited farms or petting zoos or walked in wooded areas.
Don’t forget to lean into prioritizing self-care
- Strive to live a life of joy, peace, and relaxation. Learn to breathe deeply. Before eating, take two deep breaths, pray, meditate, or just think appreciative thoughts of gratitude. This will send a signal from your brain to your gut (your second brain) saying it is time to relax and eat. Before going to bed to go to sleep, take 10 deep breaths to calm down your mind and your body. This simple step alone will tell your brain to switch off and be ready for rest.
- SLEEP – until the cows come home. This strategy truly should be moved to the top of the list. Sleep is vital to your health and overall wellbeing. Poor or inadequate sleep can contribute to illness, weight gain, mood disorders, and damage to your metabolism. Seek help for this if you are not getting at least 8 hours of good quality sleep nighty. Sometimes nutrient deficiencies need to be addressed to improve sleep interruptions.
Just get started!
It might seem overwhelming to think about accomplishing all of these tips, but just begin with one step at a time. These strategies will help you by decreasing inflammation and promoting the vibrant life God designed for you. Life is a process, and as long as you are progressing, you are on the right path.