3 Strategies for Healthy Living
Last week we looked at 3 key pieces to the health puzzle: the concepts of incorporating hydration, vegetables and healthy fats are such important steps on the journey!
This week, it’s getting a little more strategic, and takes a little bit of thought on your part.
1- Make a Plan
It’s impossible to make progress without a plan. Ask yourself some directional questions and then form a strategy. Are you interested in a certain type of eating? Do you want to become vegan? Perhaps you would like to lose weight? More energy?
Finding a great functional doctor, registered dietician, nutritionist or personal trainer can be part of the plan. We would love to connect you to various people we have met during these last 5 years.
For a lot of us at Krush, our plan involves a juice cleanse or vegan meal plan, because it kicks off 3 days of specific daily behaviors. Hydration, healthy fats and vegetables being the key parts of THE PLAN. Once we get these behaviors down, we find it easier to devote 80%+ of the week to sticking to a plan.
“Daily routines help to make behaviors effortless and easy,” says Susan Albers, Ph.D., clinical psychologist and author of 7 mindful eating books “Once we get into the swing of things, we have to put very little thought into the new behavior.”
Estimates vary, but according to experts, it takes at least two weeks, most likely two months, to establish a habit. Which is why at Krush we are constantly speaking to each other for support and motivation. Which brings me to the next strategy…
This concept is critical! Find at least one person who stands with you on a commitment to follow a plan. One of our favorite websites, MindBodyGreen.com, discusses the idea of community. As stated by neurologist and integrative physician Ilene Ruhoy, M.D., Ph.D. “Our health and our well-being are grounded in our connection not only with ourselves, but also our community, and the ecosystem. When we reach out, lean in, and open our hearts, our return is exponential.”
When I make a plan to drink more water, drink less wine :), sleep more hours or exercise more, I state it to my family and my co-workers. Get your people on board for your plans, and support your people for their plans. It becomes so much fun to cheer each other on and hold each other accountable. In my current health journey, the goal for January is no alcohol Mondays-Thursdays. Why? Because I want to reduce sugars in my diet and see if it improves my energy levels. I mentioned it to friends, family and co-workers so they could hold me accountable.
In the Blue Zone societies, which are the 5 zones in the world where people live healthily to 100 years old, one of the main tenets of their long healthy life, is Community. In my household, I create one month dinner menus, that include meals based on blue zone premises. Their community inspires my community so I can inspire others. Let me know if you would like a copy of that meal plan :)!
3- Eat Slowly
One of my favorite health tips that I have ever come across: Your stomach does not have teeth. If you do not CHEW your food thoroughly with each bite you take, it burdens your organs too heavily with work that your teeth could have done in the first place. Try to chew each bite 10-20 times. While this may seem tedious it will create a practice of eating food that allows you to savor what you are eating, and almost surely, it will encourage you to eat a little bit less.
Referring again to the special places in the world where people age gracefully, I am fascinated by this principal:
Okinawans, in Japan, tend to follow the 80% rule, which they call “hara hachi bu.” This means that they stop eating when they feel 80% full, rather than 100% full. This prevents them from eating too many calories and overstuffing themselves.
According to Healthline.Com, another health website we love, the hormones that make you feel full only reach their maximum blood levels 20 minutes after you eat. I know many of us finish eating our meal within 5 or 10 minutes of beginning to eat. Peek at your watch or phone when you sit down to eat and set a 20 minute “meal time”. See if you can put your fork down between bites, have a conversation, write in your notebook, etc.. and try to extend your meal time. It will feel strange at first but you CAN adjust, and it has lifelong impacts (just ask the Okinawans :)!!
These 3 practices: Making a Plan, Finding Your Community, and Eating Slowly, can have a dramatic impact on your lifestyle; we can all achieve anything for 3 days, but the goal for Organic Krush is to be a part of a lifestyle movement that encourages each and everyone of us to own our health, with small daily choices that add up to a lifetime of wellness.
In future newsletters it would be fun to discuss more practices such as “crowding out the negative behaviors”, OR “eating for your blood type” OR “avoiding lectins”. Tell us what you’d love to learn more about and we will bring in the experts!