My Top 5 Healthy Habits To A Vibrant Life

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How would you feel to wake up in the morning with energy and feeling vibrant all day? Health is not a destination, it's about all the possibilities you create when you are full of health. More energy creates ripple effect on your mood, the food choice you make, the exercise habits you have, the dreams you want to chase and the life you live. If you don't have energy, you won't have the motivation to change your lifestyle.

If you don't know where to start and feel overwhelmed, here's a list of my 5 essential habits to incorporate in your daily life for a more vibrant and healthier you. I like to keep things simple. Change your mindset. If you make changes from a loving place instead of a hating one, you will find it easier to keep up with your new habits as it will bring you joy to love and care for your body and mind. It's about making sustainable changes. It's the small habits we do daily that changes our life in the long run.

Here's my top 5 healthy habits to feel more vibrant:

1. Drink more water.

Everyone knows this but we actually often forget to do it. Aim for 2-3 liters of water a day. The first thing you should do when you wake up is drink one or two big glasses of water. Our bodies are made of more than 70% of water, our brain is even more, so to keep energized and our organs and cells hydrated, drink up! It will improve your digestion, energy, concentration, your skin will get clearer. You can add lemons, oranges or cucumbers slices to jazz it up. Drinking more water throughout the day will also help to crowd out cravings or snacking.

 

2. Move

Move your body every day, whenever you can. We spend so much time sitting, which strongly impact our health. It doesn't have to be 1 hour on the treadmill, start taking the stairs instead of the elevator, avoid sitting when you can, stand up when you're on the phone or in the bus, do a 10 minute workout, walk home from work, dance in your kitchen, do squats before you hop in the shower. We often get overwhelmed or find excuses not to move because we don't have enough time to dedicate to exercising but if you start with 10 minutes on your mat in the morning and evening, with some walking in between, it's already a good start. We're made to move and use our body. Moving creates endorphins, which is the "feel good" hormones. The more you move, the more you'll crave movement.

 

3. Avoid processed food

Limit anything that comes in a package, bag or can. Processed food contain high quantity of sugar, fats, preservatives and no amount of nutritious properties. If it's too overwhelming, start by reading the labels and avoid anything with more than 5 ingredients or anything with ingredients you can't pronounce, that should keep you away from nutrient-deficient foods. Think about the food you eat and its energy. Food that's been highly processed and is often not even real food, how well can it nourish you? A good way to limit processed food is to add whole foods like fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts and seeds. The more your plate is full of fresh goodness, the less room you have for the less healthy ones.

 

4. Eat more veggies

There's a lot of different diets and trends these days so it can be confusing to know exactly what to eat. But one thing everyone agrees on is vegetables. Eat a rainbow of veggies, go to the farmer's market to know what's in season, experiment and try ones you're not so familiar with. Leafy greens are the kings, they're packed with antioxidants goodness, purify the blood, improve circulation, strengthen your immune system, and clear congestion. By adding food high in vitamins and minerals, your body will start to crave more of it.

 

5. Slow down, sleep & meditate

Sleep is essential for your body to restore and replenish. When you don't sleep enough, you crave sugar, are more irritated and stressed. The hours of 10pm to midnight are the most restorative ones and count double. Slow down. When is the last time you took 5 minutes for yourself, to do absolutely nothing? Meditation has many health benefits, it improves concentration, memory, sleep, immune system, lowers blood pressure and cortisol levels. Meditate for a few minutes daily when you wake up or go to bed and focus on your breath.

Aim for balance, not perfection. Be curious and experiment. Connect with your body. And most important, make sure whatever you do nourishes you.

How meditation can improve your day!

When was the last time you sit still and just concentrated on your breathing?

I was introduced to meditation through my yoga classes. We often end the class with a 10 minute meditation, which I enjoy a lot. I wanted to add some kind of spiritual practice into my daily routine but wasn't sure how to do it. That's when the 21 day challenge from Deepak Chopra happened to start and I just jumped right in. I did the meditation every day for 21 days. It was a guided meditation of 15 minutes. And I have to say, it's been a beautiful practice that I have continued to do as I saw the improvement in the quality of my sleep and my general wellbeing. I  love meditating just before bed as it's a nice way to end the day and get ready for bed. I light some candles and make it all cozy...just because I like it!:) but you can practice meditation anywhere! A walk in nature is also a good way to bring awareness and tranquility to your mind. Meditating around the same time every day helps to create an habit. It is a learning experience as it can take time until we can let our mind wander and let go of our thoughts as well as learning to sit still in silence.

Some friends started the 21 day challenge with me and were very happy to discover all the benefits. One of them used the daily meditation practice to help her quit smoking! She replaced the "after work cigarette" ritual with a 15 minute meditation and it really helped her in getting her mind off the cigarette. The feeling of calmness and deep relaxation are such rare moments in our busy lives. We stopped taking time for ourselves, we're always surrounded by noise with the TV or music on, we just forgot how to connect with our body and mind, to let go of the day and all the negative energy accumulated. Stress has so many bad effects on our health that finding a quiet moment to let your brain rest is incredibly powerful.

Meditation has wonderful health benefits. Here's a few ones. Have a look!

  • It boosts your immune system.
  • It is an anti-inflammatory- as the stress brings inflammation, the relax mind can help prevent it.
  • It lowers blood pressure.
  • It increases fertility- you're more likely to make babies when you're in a relaxed environment than a stressful one.
  • It relieves Irritable Bowel Syndrome symptoms like bloating, diarrhea and constipation.
  • It can help with insomnia, depression, anxiety, chronic pain, migraines.
  • It improves your memory and keeps you focused and clear.
  • It slows down the aging process.

Happy Meditation!

 

Sources:

http://foodmatters.tv/articles-1/7-health-benefits-of-meditation

http://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/bhcv2/bhcarticles.nsf/pages/Meditation