Archive for » October 29th, 2017«

+ What to Avoid to Improve Your Head-to-Toe Wellbeing by Travis White (8)

When it comes to overall health and wellbeing, sometimes it’s just as important to think about what harmful activities and behaviors to avoid as knowing what activities to incorporate into your daily life. Everyone knows that for head-to-toe health, one has to eat right, exercise, and practice mindfulness.

But there are also specific activities you must avoid in order to be the best you, from head to toe.

Stop your irregular sleep pattern
The devastating effects of lack of sleep are about more than just feeling tired. Sure, irregular and inadequate sleep makes your body feel tired. But there is so much more that can go wrong when you don’t sleep right (1).

Lack of sleep can seriously affect your mental health. It can lead to memory loss, cloudiness, and the inability to make decisions. It can also make you more impulsive and easier to anger. Poor sleep can compromise your immune system, harm your vision, and negatively affect your skin.

It’s important to keep to a sleep schedule – even on the weekends. Your body works better when you have a definite sleep cycle, not one that changes every day. If you have trouble sleeping, try utilizing a pre-bed relaxation routine every night.

“A relaxing, routine activity right before bedtime conducted away from bright lights helps separate your sleep time from activities that can cause excitement, stress or anxiety which can make it more difficult to fall asleep, get sound and deep sleep or remain asleep,” says the Sleep Foundation (2).

Avoid napping during the day if you can and make sure to get some exercise. A tired body is a sleepy body and a sleepy body is a healthy one.

Stop overworking yourself
Nothing can negatively affect your whole mind and body like stress. It’s a silent killer that takes its roots in the brain and manifests all over your body. As the American Psychological Association points out, long term chronic stress can damage your body’s systems by making it constantly think it’s in “fight or flight” mode, triggering the release of hormones (3).

“These hormones cause the heart to beat faster, respiration rate to increase, blood vessels in the arms and legs to dilate, digestive process to change and glucose levels (sugar energy) in the bloodstream to increase to deal with the emergency. The SNS response is fairly sudden in order to prepare the body to respond to an emergency situation or acute stress, short term stressors. Once the crisis is over, the body usually returns to the pre-emergency, unstressed state. Chronic stress, experiencing stressors over a prolonged period of time, can result in a long-term drain on the body. As the SNS continues to trigger physical reactions, it causes a wear-and-tear on the body.”

Stress can even have a negative impact on your skin (4). By increasing production of certain hormones, it can cause higher oil production or inflammation. In turn, you might see bad flare-ups of conditions like acne and psoriasis. Stress also makes it easy to let your skin care regimen fall to the wayside, sometimes causing you to skip your daily washing or moisturizing.

To deal with chronic stress, first reduce the stressors in your life and make your home a stress-free space (5). If you can’t reduce them all (which nobody can), you have to be able to deal with them through relaxation. Meditation, focused breathing, exercise, and yoga can all help with this. Remember, it’s not only ok to take a break every now and then, it’s essential.

Stop eating all that sugar
Excess sugar consumption will not only cause you to pack on the pounds, but it will also make you more tired and has even been linked to non-obesity-related heart disease. It can even affect your skin by causing a breakdown of the natural collagen that gives it that healthy “plump” look, and producing more testosterone which can enlarge pores and increase oiliness (6).

“Over the course of the 15-year study on added sugar and heart disease, participants who took in 25% or more of their daily calories as sugar were more than twice as likely to die from heart disease as those whose diets included less than 10% added sugar,” quotes a study in the Harvard Health blog (7).

In your daily life, one big change you can make it to replace all beverages with water and unsweetened coffee and tea. It’s not easy, but it’s simple. And the changes you’ll see and feel in your body will be tremendous.

(1)  11 signs you are sleep deprived
(2) Healthy sleep tips – The Sleep Foundation
(3) Stress effects on the body – American Psychological Association
(4) Signs of stress – Healthline
(5) How to Optimize Your Home for Healthy, Stress-free Living–
(6) Do You Have ‘Sugar Face’? The
(7) Eating too much added sugar increases the risk of dying with heart disease – Harvard Health Publishing

How to get a good night sleep – a step by step guide

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