My overarching health motto is “don’t overcomplicate it”. I utilise this thinking from providing dietary and exercise advice to the wider public to recommending treatments of colds and flus for my patients... right through to assisting with corporate health strategies for global business with whom I work.
So, with this in mind, here are my ten simple daily tips for amazing health...just try it for 20 days straight and you’ll feel the incredible difference!
0 Hours of Television: Watching television is often the most common daily activity apart from work and sleep in many parts of the world. According to a study from Harvard School of Public Health researchers, prolonged TV viewing was associated with increased risk of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and premature death.
1 Hour of Exercise: This can be in small chunks (10 minutes minimum at a time). Huff and Puff is key. Get your breathing to a point of being able to to talk but not sing (maybe don’t test this out loud!). You don’t need fancy gadgets to tell you how to exercise!
2 Litres of Water: Flushing toxins is key. Some people think that water “bloats” them. This is the opposite of what really happens. In fact, the toxin build-up (just from everyday living) retains water; which actually leads to that bloating feeling. Increased water is decreased toxins and improved wellbeing.
3 Cups of Veggies & 3 Cups of Green Tea: (can include one – and only one – delicious coffee). These anti-oxidants combat everyday (oxidative) stress. Simple.
4 Short Breaks: away from your desk in your work day to chill-out and switch your brain off. Try it. You’ll come back refreshed. You’ll be more productive even after a 5 minute walk around the block and straight back to your work.
5 Small Meals: of nutrient-dense wholefood. Not calorie-dense food. Think about foods that just make your body feel amazing after you’ve eaten them. One of my favourite small meals is sparkling mineral water + espresso coffee + dollop of full-fat yoghurt + 6-10 almonds + strawberries + sprinkle of chia seeds. Yum.
6am Wake-up Time: With no gadgets nearby. Why would you want to start your day being reactive to other peoples’ requests / status updates? Why not spend the first part of your day planning what YOU might do? Prioritise tasks that will make you breathe a sigh of relief when they’re done.
7 Minutes of Happy Chatter: with a loved one / friend / colleague. Gets those endorphins zipping around your body. Overall-feel good.
8 Hours of Sleep: Rest - it’s UBER-important.
9pm Switch off All Gadgets: Even dim light can interfere with a person’s circadian rhythm and melatonin secretion (ie Sleep!). A mere eight lux—a level of brightness exceeded by most table lamps and about twice that of a night light—has an effect. Researchers have linked short sleep to increased risk for depression, as well as diabetes and cardiovascular problems.
10pm End the Day: and off to bed - having had a hour to RELAX beforehand.