A wise man once said that when we are healthy and well, we have a thousand dreams, but when we are sick or in pain we only have one!!
Life is a journey, and for most of us health is an important part of that journey, because if you have health challenges your ability to manifest your passions will be seriously impaired.
A few of my passions in life are all rolled in to one: living healthily, empowering people and INSPIRING people to live a greater life. So after more than 20 years in the game of health and human potential, I have found ways to communicate this to people and inspire them to WANT to change.
So these are the 5 STEPS to apply to reverse just about any illness, and a lifestyle to adopt to AVOID just about any illness as well, and stay healthy. Did you know that there is a HUGE gap between someone who is healthy and well and THRIVING and someone who is sick and diseased and has an illness? There is actually a term for it – we call it asymptomatic pathology. Can someone be Sick and not feel it, and if someone feels OK, are they Healthy. Interesting questions . . .
Remember that healthy living is a lifestyle adopted FOR LIFE, and not just for the few weeks leading up to summer so you can look good on the beach!! IT IS FOR EVER!!!!
The more I study natural healing, the more it becomes clear to me that the solution for almost all illness involves some fairly basic concepts. In my experience, if you apply these principles early enough with most illnesses you will activate your body’s healing response and recover from your illness. It will take time though: remember by the time you have the illness, it has taken your whole life to create it, so allow your body enough time to heal.
The basic principles involve sun, water, movement, food, and sleep. In my experience most people who have just started investigating the power of natural medicine fail to comprehensively integrate all of these principles and reap the powerful synergistic benefits they can provide.
1. SUN EXPOSURE
Sun exposure has many far reaching benefits: besides getting out into nature which I believe is good for the body , mind and spirit, UVB helps your body produce vitamin D which has been shown to help prevent diseases like obesity, heart disease, arthritis, asthma, Alzheimer’s, and dozens of other diseases.
There are many benefits of sun exposure. The UVB in the sun will help your body produce vitamin D, and optimal levels are crucial to prevent diseases like obesity, heart disease, arthritis, asthma, Alzheimer’s, and dozens of other diseases.
Also, and this is important, if you have cancer or an autoimmune disease like MS, Crohn’s, or rheumatoid arthritis, it is absolutely vital to raise your vitamin D to an optimal biological level.
Regular sun exposure not only provides UVB but over 1500 wavelengths and we most likely will not full appreciate the value of regular exposure to many of these wavelengths for hundreds of years.
However, many people are confused about sun exposure, and don’t understand that to reap the benefits they need a significant amount of skin exposed to the sun for their skin to stimulate vitamin D production.
Even if you live in a sunny climate during the summer, it is the rare individual that is getting adequate sun exposure. This is typically due to the simple fact that most people have responsibilities during the work week that keep them indoors, out of the sun. Remember that 15 to 30 minutes of eating outside with all your clothes on is not going to give you healthy vitamin D levels.
There is simply no question that regular sun exposure is the ideal as it will provide you with far more than just UVB, but if you, like most people, are unable to do this, then you must take oral vitamin D and regularly test your blood until your level is above 50 ng/ml.
The range can be anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours. The only way to know for sure is to make sure you never get burnt and to measure your vitamin D blood levels. Also, if you take oral supplements it’s important to take vitamin K2, about 150 mcg as MK7.
For more information on the health benefits of Vitamin D, read this extremely informative article: 15 Health Benefits of Vitamin D, According to Science (+ 15 Best Vitamin D Foods)
2. Drink Clean Water Free of Toxins like Chlorine and Fluoride
Remember that most municipal water supplies are contaminated with chlorine disinfection byproducts and fluoride. It is relatively easy to remove chlorine and disinfection byproducts with high quality carbon filters.
The large filters are good for 5 to 10 years but the prefilters need to be changed every month or two. However carbon filters don’t remove fluoride very well, so reverse osmosis or distillers are the only option. My favorite is reverse osmosis (RO) as they don’t damage the water as much.
The downside of RO filters is most have a holding tank that invariably becomes contaminated and needs to be regularly disinfected with chlorine, which is a maintenance hassle. The work-around for this is to use one that has a high output without a holding tank that you can fill a large glass container with.
Our number one recommendation is rain water. Most rain water captured in the Garden Route will be clean and free of most harmful things. Be aware of lead based paints, and other things that may make their way in to the water (bird droppings etc.). Get your water tested to be sure.
3. Eat Real Food at the Right Time
It is important to realize that if you implement these simple food strategies you can prevent and reverse almost any disease. Getting your nutrition correct is the first step in healing just about any disease. For some diseases, like type 2 two diabetes, it will cure virtually every case. It will also prevent and treat most heart disease, cancers, and Alzheimer’s. You typically don’t need special herbs or supplements to resolve diabetes. They might help, but the key is removing the insulin resistance with diet and exercise.
So what is the common thread that runs through these diseases? If you know your stuff you probably know that the answer is insulin resistance. Resolve insulin resistance and you no longer have type 2 diabetes, and you dramatically reduce if not eliminate your risk of cancer, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s. The simple key is to EAT REAL FOOD.
Ideally growing it yourself is best. A great way to start is growing your own sunflower seed sprouts. From seed to harvest is less than 10 days. The risk of contamination is very small if you grow them yourself. Most all contaminated ones are commercially grown. Next best is locally grown and organic, we have great farmers markets in the Garden Route, use them! But if you can’t do this for whatever reason, you still need to eat vegetables. Even non-organic ones are better than no vegetables at all.
That means avoiding all processed foods, and especially sugars and processed grains, or even worse, heated oils. I am not sure which is worse, processed sugar or processed fats, but the key is to avoid both. That means industrialized polyunsaturated oils in a bottle, like corn or canola oil, and margarine which is almost considered to be a plastic!
Saturated fats like coconut oil are fine, as are olive oil, butter, avocado, and nuts (especially macadamia and pecans). But how do you know if you have insulin resistance? Simple: if you are overweight, have diabetes, high blood pressure, or taking a statin, you likely have it; but to know for sure, have a fasting blood insulin level test. If it’s over 5 you’re insulin resistant. If you don’t know what your level is, you may be at risk. The test is cheap and I have heard that Dischem does it for free and Clicks is inexpensive.
Until you resolve your insulin resistance it is best to avoid even healthy grains and limit your fruits to 25 grams of fructose or less per day. Once you resolve your insulin resistance you can increase your healthy grains and fruits to whatever level you enjoy as long as insulin resistance doesn’t recur.
The Timing of your Food is KEY
Insulin resistance is epidemic in our culture. Resolving it will be vital to improving just about any health problem. The most powerful strategy I have ever encountered is to replicate our ancestral eating patterns. Remember, your ancient ancestors never had access to food 24/7 so it makes perfect sense that your genes and metabolism are optimized for regular periods where you don’t eat.
The key is to restrict your calories (two meals, ideally by skipping breakfast and having lunch as your first meal and avoiding food for at least three hours before bedtime) to a 6 to 8 hour window, and eat no calories for the remainder of the day. You can drink water, tea, or coffee as long as there is no dairy or sweetener in them.
According to Dr. Valter Longo,1 director of the Longevity Institute at the University of Southern California, where he studies meal timing and calorie restriction, even three meals a day may be too much.
Based on his research, he’s convinced the fewer meals you eat, the better you’ll fare overall. As reported by Time Magazine:2
4. You Must Regularly Move Your Body to Stay Healthy – EXERCISE!
The average western lifestyle adult spends about 10 hours (or more) each day sitting, and more than 10,000 studies have now confirmed that chronic sitting is a potent independent risk factor for insulin resistance and an early death – even if you eat right, exercise regularly, and are very fit; even a professional or Olympic level athlete. It’s really important to realize that you simply cannot offset 10 hours of stillness with one hour of exercise. You need near-continuous movement throughout the day. Once you’ve sat for an hour, you’ve sat for too long.
For a while I recommended getting up every 10 minutes, but for me that failed miserably. The only thing that worked was to restrict my sitting to less than one hour a day. So ideally, strive to sit for less than three hours a day, and make it a point to walk more. A stand-up desk is a great option if you have an office job, and a fitness tracker or smartphone can be used to ensure you’re getting the recommended 7,000 to 10,000 steps per day.
Next, you’ll want to incorporate a more regimented fitness routine, and while virtually any exercise is better than none, high intensity exercises are the most potent. Benefits of high intensity interval training (HIIT) include cardiovascular fitness, improved muscle growth and strength, and the generation of “anti-aging” human growth hormone (HGH), also referred to as “the fitness hormone”.
It also effectively stimulates your muscles to release anti-inflammatory myokines, which increase your insulin sensitivity and glucose use inside your muscles. They also increase liberation of fat from adipose cells, and the burning of the fat within the skeletal muscle.
Strength training is also an important component, and is recommended for both sexes of all ages, including kids and seniors. Gaining more muscle through resistance exercises has many benefits, from losing excess fat to maintaining healthy bone mass and preventing age-related muscle loss as you age.
Whatever you choose to do, please do take the time to exercise, and incorporate as much physical activity into your life as you can.
5. You Are Not Special — We All Need to Sleep Eight Hours to Stay Healthy
Most fail to fully appreciate how important sleep is to their health. I know, as I was one of them. However I have since learned to appreciate the major role that adequate sleep plays in recovery, repair, and optimal healing. I used to think I was immune to needing adequate sleep. I would routinely get less than six hours a night and thought I could function this way. But I’ve since realized that most adults really need about eight hours of sleep every night.
There are exceptions to this rule. A genetic mutation resulting in a condition called advanced phase sleep syndrome allows affected individuals to thrive on less sleep, but fewer than one in 10,000 people have this condition. Odds are you are not one of them.
Frequent yawning during the day is a major red flag that you’re sleep deprived, as is nodding off when you’re reading or in a meeting. If you need an alarm clock to wake up, and you wake up feeling tired and groggy, you probably need to go to sleep earlier (or get more restful sleep) as well. If you struggle with sleep apnoea, skip the CPAP and consider a consult with an oral myofascial therapist.
What to Do Next
If you apply the principles that I review they will likely resolve over 80 percent of your health problems. If you have any questions about this, I will promise to do as much as I can to find out or get you to see the right specialist.
If you still have a question, then I would encourage you to find a natural medicine clinician. There are many good ones out there. A great strategy is to use social networking and go to your local health food stores and get a consensus as to who the best ones in your area are. If you have a rare or complex problem you might need to search the web and forums to find a world class expert. I believe the time and expense will be worth it.
I used to see patients from all over the world and know firsthand how glad and grateful my patients were to make the effort as they typically resolved their health challenge without dangerous drugs or surgery, and are healthy today as a result. It is vital to maintain a positive attitude the entire time and know that if you are committed to finding a natural solution you will find one. It’s merely a matter of time. Always remember that you have the power to take control of your and your family’s health.
By Dr Brett Lederle from chiroLIFE, Knysna
SPECIAL thanks to Dr. Mercola from www.mercola.com
For any questions, please drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 044 382 3888.
This is not a substitute for any medical advice; please consult your doctor for any illness related concerns.