Happy 2019, precious friends!
I'm starting off the New Year with an inbox full of questions about how to be well, and I wanted to create a really simple resource for friends and family who aren't sure where to start with lifestyle changes. I am a strong believer that God wants great things for all of us! Which means we don't beat ourselves up for past choices or things that happen which are truly beyond our control. Instead, we take the reigns and serve our temple well.
Your body is the vehicle to help you carry out your entire life's purpose. You need to fuel it well. Here are my top five tips for creating and maintaining a machine that can carry you through the entire year, without too much hassle.
Note: if you're on a chronic disease journey, like me, there might be some hassle. Still, check out the tips below and let me know what you would add, based on your wild path!
1. Eliminate processed foods. Processed = inflammation. Options for eliminating processed foods are fairly simple - unless your life is processed food. And then it might be a more challenging transition. When I taught family nutrition classes several years back, one of the games we played was ,"Who's Your Mama?" If the mother of your food is a factory, you need to make some serious changes ASAP.
While I advocate for a low carb, high (healthy) fat lifestyle alongside the creators of Bulletproof and Dr. Josh Axe, you can make a drastic change just by going on a whole 30 or paleolithic eating plan (there are awesome guides for both on Pinterest). On Pinterest, I also have loads of recipes we've tested and loved!
Need an app to help you track nutrients? I use the free version of Carb Manager App (it's been meeting all my needs for the last 365 plus).
2. Take a whole food multivitamin. I have a high quality one that we swear by - it's from the KetoWorks line (and with the loyal customer program, you'll save 40% off with no membership fees). It has a blend of whole foods, adrenal/stress support herbs, and a metabolic blend. It's formulated with peppermint oil which makes it really easy to digest, too.
While I love our brand, there are great options at your local organic grocer too. Make sure you know what's in these - just like your factory-free foods! If there are loads of hard-to-pronounce, these vitamins might actually hurt your body (or give you no benefit) instead of heal it.
3. Take a biodynamic probiotic. What I mean, is you want a probiotic that works with your body's need. I really like a brand that keeps it simple; perhaps adds prebiotic fiber (the fibers that feed the healthy gut bacteria you're introducing); and one that doesn't need to be refrigerated. Dr. Axe recommends 50 billion CFU, but I have seen great options at 15 billion plus.
4. Create a wellness journal. Fit Happens is an awesome journal that you can purchase on Amazon. After completing my life coach training several years back, I realized that I personally needed this accountability as I attempted to debunk chronic disease. I was able to see significant patterns with this journal, and ended up figuring out what my body needed most from day to day.
5. Make room for rest. One of the things that my body, mind, and spirit needed most was rest. I know how hard it is to find the time when you're a caregiver, but you need a Sabbath of some sort. You get to define what that looks like, of course! But (for example) I do nothing on Monday's. I've spent 48 hours plus with the kids, and my body is exhausted. So is my mind. I don't book appointments on Monday. I just bare bones it. Whatever must be done, is done. And that's it. There's a theory that "pacing" eliminates a lot of health struggles in those with chronic illness.
There are several points I didn't make in this article, this week. Exercise is absolutely an important part of keeping your vehicle running well, too. So stay tuned for my next post on accessible fitness and yoga!
What God Wants
I wanted to end this post with the fabulous Rick Warren, who writes quite a bit about what God wants for our bodies. Warren has some wonderful insight in this article from his page. He's also the author of The Daniel Plan, which is another option for eating clean (and learning a bit about fasting, too).
As always, praying you ease slowly into life change. You are worthy of well, so don't rush into it. And if you need support, I'm honored to be by your side.
I love sharing helpful resources! I may also make a small cut that keeps me fully caffeinated and my brain research-packed (because we can't serve from an empty well, and I really love collecting all the knowledge, understanding, and wisdom I can for both of us.) Always, I'll do my best to keep you on the right path, but I'm no doctor even though I play one at home - often - and mostly for myself. Life with CFS sure keeps things interesting! Life with you + CFS keeps things full of JOY, too.