5 Ways To Become Healthier ( Starting Now)

5 Ways to become healthier ( starting

All across the world, people are waking up to a pressing need for us to become aware of how to take care of our health, as well as making a positive impact on our environment and community. 

Through the internet, affordable courses, books, health leaders, alternative MDs, Moms/Dads/Kids, activists, chefs, and so have appeared. It can be overwhelming finding out what we should eat and how we can best take care of our health. On top of that, there is a belief that in order to be healthy you need to spend a ton of money on supplements or equipment. Sure, I love my Vitamixer and see real value in supplementation, but in reality you can start living a healthier life right here and now.

I’ve created my list of 5 ways you can take charge of your health without feeling overwhelmed. Start with one of these points or do all of them! Whatever feels right for you and your family. Remember, you are not in this alone!

1.) Say no to GMO

If you are concerned about Genetically modified food, pesticides, and other harmful toxins in your food, it’s time to switch to organic. It’s important to remember that even though organic food can cost more, it doesn’t have to; there are organic produce clubs you can join that send you an affordable box of veg/fruit every week, and at your local farmer’s market you can speak with farmer’s about seasonal produce.

Organic shampoo too expensive? Consider making your own ( youtube has many videos on everything from ‘no-poo’ to dry shampoo). No fluoride free toothpaste at your local store? Use baking soda and essential oil ( like peppermint) or even turmeric.

Remember to buy in bulk when possible so as to save even more. Your local health food store should have a bulk section for things like chickpeas, lentils, rice, etc You can also save by shopping at places like iherb which offers discounts and cheap or free shipping.

2.) Download my free workbook to determine your budget and assess your pantry

If you’re not sure where to start and are new to all this health stuff, download my free workbook and start filling it out. It will help you determine your budget, personal health goals, and what items in your house may contain harmful ingredients.

3.) Find the right exercise for YOU

Not everyone enjoys running, yoga, or cross fit. Find what YOU enjoy and do it daily. That’s your number 1 task: consistency. If you hate doing something, you won’t do it for long, so find out what works for you. If it happens to be running, then schedule it into your calendar and tell family/friends you are unavailable during that time for anything other than running. Or better yet, invite them along with you!

Enjoy yoga but no time to take a class? No problem, you can do it at home and fit it into your schedule. Read Emily’s post on how to not feel overwhelmed by yoga and know that it’s flexible for your needs and schedule.

4.) Start using and/or growing spices

You can do this right now! Write down your top 5 favorite spices on a sheet of paper and then google them followed by ‘health benefits’ or ‘how to grow’ and you will be amazed as to A. how health they are and B. probably how easy it is to grow them ( well, some of them)

I’ve written about the health benefits of ginger as well as cinnamon, and that is just touching the tip of the iceberg! Wait til I write about turmeric…one could write a book on turmeric as it’s a major superfood.

Once you’ve investigated the health benefits of your favorite spices and herbs, discover how to use them. The Herbal Academy of New England has excellent programs and articles for learning how to make poultices, cook with superfoods, make tinctures, etc. Meghan Telpner also teaches on her TV show and culinary nutrition program how you can use superfoods in your daily diet.

5.) Simplify

I can’t even begin to expound on how important it is that we all slow down and simplify our lives. That’s a challenging task in our fast paced keep-up-with-the-Joneses world, but our health and wellbeing depend on it.

A few ways to start slowing down and simplifying

-Declutter one room a week and donate or sell whatever you don’t use or need

-Journal 1 page a day. This will slow down your train of thought and get you into a contemplative mode. An excellent way to end the day. 

– Go on a limited info diet. I am not saying you shouldn’t stay on topic of topics that are important to you, I’m saying don’t be inundated with negativity that is dominate in media. 

– Spend time each day meditating and/or praying. 

-Take a nature walk with your family. 

All in all, remember that the journey to wellbeing is something that may not happen overnight. It can, and it’s great if it does but leave room to gradually improving your health too. No matter what health issues you are facing, you can do something each and everyday to get you closer to your goals.

The Culinary Nutrition Expert Program

10 Ways To Make Yoga More Than A Resolution

yoga

10 Ways to Make Yoga More Than A Resolution

Whether you are new to yoga or are looking to restart your practice there are some things to remember so as to avoid overwhelm.

10. Start with a five minute practice if you don’t have much time or start with a home practice if you can’t get to a studio.  Don’t let the inability to get to a group class keep you from experiencing the benefits of a practice.

9. Classes are always crowded at the beginning of the year.  If you tried going to classes for the first time in January or February and they were packed, know that by now things have calmed down a bit.

8.  Don’t let the new and crazy sounding words scare you.  Your teacher will show you what they are asking you to do and if you feel lost give it a couple of chances rather than just giving up right away.  If you feel lost after a couple of classes find a new class and a teacher that makes you feel comfortable.

7. Don’t feel like you need all of the “gear”.  You don’t need a special mat, expensive clothes or yoga socks.  You don’t actually even need a mat to get started.

6. Go to the appropriate yoga class and practice the right kind of yoga for your body.  If you have not moved your body in so long that you wore leg warmers the last time you went to a class then don’t start with an advanced Vinyasa class.  Find a Gentle or Beginner’s class and give yourself permission to start slowly.

5. Know that it is ok to not be able to do every single pose that is taught.  Go with the flow and do what you can.  There is a reason it is called a yoga “practice”.  It takes time and work.

4. Try not to compare yourself to your neighbor.  Your teacher may say that to you and you might laugh to yourself and think ”right…” but really don’t do it.  Yoga is not about comparing so stop doing it and enjoy your practice more by just being in the moment.

3. Remember to laugh a little (or even a lot).  Yoga makes us feel joyous and laughter is just another expression of joy. A yoga class doesn’t have to be serious and stuffy.

2. Take care of yourself after class.  Drink water, eat healthy foods and get some rest.

1.  Start where you are.  Forgot needing to be flexible and just go to a yoga class!

Emily Loupe is a yoga teacher, yoga therapist, massage therapist and much more.  She has a passion for wellness and helping people use the practices of yoga to create health, wellbeing and happiness.  She teaches and runs a teacher training program in Austin, Texas called Elemental Yoga School.  Elemental Yoga School will be offering online yoga programs in 2014.  Find out more at http://www.elementalyoga.org

5 Ways To Stay Happy And Healthy In 2014

2014 healthy living tips

Click here to download this FREE printable!

This time of year is always buzzing with excited and hopeful energy, people all over the world planning the year ahead. Setting goals. Dreaming big. Wondering what 2014 will bring.

Whatever your goals and dreams are for this year, here are some tips to ensure it’s happy and healthy.

1. Be Present.

“Realize deeply that the present moment is all you have. Make the NOW the primary focus of your life.” ~ Eckhart Tolle

Make mindfulness a habit by bringing yourself back to the present moment whenever you notice yourself getting lost in thought. This is especially important if you often re-play the past or spend too much time future-tripping.

The key here is awareness. Once you realise you’re stuck in your head, turn your awareness to your body. Focus on your breathing. Listen to the sounds around you. Feel your back against the chair or your feet on the ground.

A great way to train your mind to stay present is to meditate. Even ten minutes a day will make a difference. Light a candle and gaze at the flame. Go outside and let nature guide you towards a more peaceful state. Listen to a meditation recording or go to a class.

By giving yourself over to the now, you’ll feel more relaxed and joy will come to you with more ease.

2. Laugh.

“At the height of laughter, the universe is flung into a kaleidoscope of new possibilities.” ~ Jean Houston

We’ve all heard the saying, ‘laughter is the best medicine.’ It’s uplifting and fun, it brings people together and lightens your mood. Not only that, it’s an amazing happiness booster and even reduces stress.

Make it a goal to laugh every day in 2014. Watch your favorite funny movies and tv shows {The Big Bang Theory and Seinfeld are my go-to laugh inducers!}. Read funny books. Make time to hang out with people who make you laugh or try Laughter Yoga.

A good giggle can transform even the darkest of days.

3. Nourish Your Body.

“Let food be thy medicine, thy medicine shall be thy food.” ~ Hippocrates

Choose foods that make your body glow from the inside out. Every body is different when it comes to finding which foods keep us at optimum health; vegan, paleo, gluten free, the list goes on. If you’ve found the foods that nourish you, great! Keep it up.

If not, find the foods that make you feel good and healthy. If you need help, find a nutritionist or health coach and work together to find what works for you.

4. Move Your Butt.

“The higher your energy level, the more efficient your body. The more efficient your body, the better you feel and the more you will use your talent to produce outstanding results.” ~ Anthony Robbins

Exercise is brilliant for a whole mind, body, spirit boost. How our body feels determines every other area of our lives, so it’s vital to get our bodies moving regularly.

Again, it’s about finding what works best for you. It could be yoga, marathon running, going to the gym, swimming, dancing, even hula hooping or trampolining.

If you don’t exercise as much as you’d like and want to feel fitter and stronger in 2014 {like me!}, set a goal and stick to it no matter what. Start small if you need to, even taking your dog for a walk every day is enough. Keep building on your fitness routine as you go along; jump rope after your walk or jump on an exercise bike for 30 mins every day.

The more you move your body, the better you’ll feel.

5. Do What You Love.

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” ~ Steve Jobs

It doesn’t matter what it is. Whether it’s knitting, writing, painting, gardening, playing guitar, hiking, cooking, dancing, volunteering… if you love it, do it! And do it as often as possible.

Forget about what other people think; do what makes you happy. Working on our passions can be as calming as meditation and is guaranteed to make you feel joyful, fulfilled and alive.

If you haven’t found what you love to do yet, keep looking. Here’s a clue; when you do it, you’ll get lost in it, it will electrify you and you’ll lose track of time because you’re having so much damn fun!

And if you’re worried it’s too selfish to do what makes you happy, take a look at my all-time favorite quote:

“Ask what makes you come alive and do it. Because what the world needs are people who have come alive.” — Howard Thurman

I hope this post has inspired you to make 2014 your happiest and healthiest year ever. If you want a reminder of these 5 happiness boosters, I made a free printable for you to do just that! Check it out here!

jenbiopic (1)Jen Saunders is the creator of Wild Sister Magazine and the Wild Sisterhood. She’s a tie-dye wearing, coffee guzzling writer, artist + self love advocate who fiercely believes that empowering women will change the world. A former city girl living by the sea with her husband, when she’s not creating the next edition, blog post or ecourse, Jen loves movie marathons, writing fiction and instagramming ridiculously cute photos of her pug.

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Health Experts 2.0

 

Just as quickly as Eastern and herbal medicine was swept away by Western MDs, it’s making a strong and permanent comeback; the new and real health experts are following ancient systems of medicine, designed to heal the patient, and not just treat the symptoms of their dis-ease. From 5000 year old Ayurveda to cutting edge herbalism, doctors such as Dr. Partap Chauhan are showing how what we eat and how we treat our bodies and minds on a daily basis will show us what kind of health we will have.

I became familiar with Dr. Chauhan’s work after my wife studied at his clinic, Jiva. The entire Chauhan family work together to disseminate the Ayurvedic way of living to the world, on TV, online, through his books, courses, and in his clinic. They tour the world spreading tips on wellbeing and stress reduction; companies have taken a strong interest in incorporating their methods into the workplace, to help employs become happier and more productive.

As the popularity of wellness coaching rises, coaches are popping up everywhere to meet the demand. Instead of following a fixed strategy, they are flexible and have our own ways of treating disease and helping one live in happiness and health. Gretchen at Total Wellness Mentor is one of those coaches, treating clients in person and online. She helps families and individuals plan their meals and move towards a plant based diet, loaded in Phytochemicals.

Nutrition researched Mike Adams, aka the Health Ranger, runs the invaluable site Natural News, which gives hard to find studies to the public, as well as research found on natural medicine. What I love most about the site is that it sheds light into the corruption in mainstream medicine and the pharmaceutical industry, while providing precious information on natural cures.

Dr. Eric Braverman is the ‘doctor’s doctor’. He has worked at the Princeton Bio Center and now is the founder of PATH. his must have book, The Edge Effect, expounds upon the importance of amino acids and diet in slow down aging, treating illness, and balancing one’s mental state. His Rainbow Diet integrates lots of veggies and fruits, as well as herbal teas and spices such as turmeric.

One of our friends and mentors in Juan Pablo Girardi of the University of Healing Arts and Brain Optimization. He has an MA in Psychology and MS in Engineering, and teaches students about nutrition and amino acids, and the importance of meditation. He also is a life coach and transpersonal psychologist.

Who are your favorite Health Experts?