Sunday, 8 January 2017

Practical Health Tips

Does it ever bother you why there is an increasing prevalence of non-communicable diseases in our society? By non-communicable diseases, I mean diseases like Cardiovascular diseases( HBP, Atherosclerosis, Cardiac arrest), cancers, diabetes,et cetera. We look at our grandparents and great-grandparents and wonder how they were able to live so long.
Just last Christmas, I went to my mother's village(Etche-a part of Rivers State) and met an old lady whom her family said was 135 years old! Don't know how true that was but she looked real old, it was believable.
       Sometimes, I ask myself, "What did our forefathers do that increased their lifespan?" Generally, they lived up to 80 years old at least(ceteris paribus). Today in Nigeria, the average lifespan is about 54 years. Obviously, there are things they did that we are probably missing out in our lifestyle. So, I've decided to point out few things they did that we can apply in our 21st-century culture.

1. Diet:

By 'diet' I do not mean 'dieting' to lose calories or some other food regime which I can justifiably doubt they did. I mean their diet consisted of more natural foods like fruits, vegies, tuber, beans, meat, fish, etc. Our typical diet has more of processed and packaged foods like canned drinks, ice-cream, hotdogs, fast-foods which have less beneficial nutrients and more calories, fats, oils, preservatives, additives, lots of sugar, too much spice and 'everything nice'(don't think so!)
WHAT WE CAN DO: We should eat more of natural foods like I have already mentioned, cook our own food more often so that we are more conscious of what we put inside and take less processed food. Occasionally, we can take juices(I don't mean the packaged ones) made from natural sources like pure vegetable juice or pure fruit juice. Not only do they give us the vital nutrients but they also help in cleansing the body system and getting it rid of toxins.

Because there were no means of transportation back then, our forefathers had to trek long distances to go to their farms, the forest or to visit someone. They climbed trees to do some palm-wine tapping or for some other reason. In the rivers where they could take their bath or fish, they occasionally swam in it. Now these are all forms of exercises.
WHAT WE CAN DO: Exercise more often. A brisk walk or jogging for 30 minutes daily improves blood circulation and burns off the calories. Other forms of exercises like cycling, running and why should I forget to mention dancing and going to the gym  can all go a long way in improving our health. The benefits of exercising are:
  • Boost happiness levels
  • Reduce your risk of heart disease naturally. ...
  • Sleep better. ...
  • Get an energy boost. ...
  • Increase strength and flexibility. ...
  • Improve memory. ...
  • Increase self-confidence
  • 3. Meditation:
  • The term meditation refers to a broad variety of practices that includes techniques designed to promote relaxation, build internal energy or life force (qi, ki, prana, etc.) and develop compassion,[3] love, patience, generosity, and forgiveness
    Meditation is a practice where an individual trains the mind or induces a mode of consciousness, either to realize some benefit or for the mind to simply acknowledge its content without becoming identified with that content,[1] or as an end in itself.[2]

  • Though our ancestors were not known to be Christians, they were at least known for being spiritual. Ancient religions like Buddhism,, Hinduism and even Judaism all practised meditation. Meditation is important as it it clears the mind and ease many health concerns such as high blood pressure ,depression and anxiety, increases happiness, increases memory and attention, increases wisdom, empathy and compassion.
    WHAT WE CAN DO: Have a quiet private time for a few minutes or more daily depending on your schedule. It should be away from the hustle and bustle. As a Christian, Prayer time- the time when we commune privately with God, is also a form of meditation. Of course the added benefits are getting to know God better, discover yourself more and answered prayers. In fact, research shows that people with religion and faith are happier, have more 'life-satisfaction' and sustained happiness.

    4.Relax and enjoy life more:
    Our ancestors most likely had little too worry about. No air pollution, no taxes to pay, no exams to write( yes o! exams dey tire person abeg), no bosses on their necks, no need to get so much money to get the latest fashion, cars and big houses. Their lives were probably more simple: wake up, go to the farm, care for the home, 'gist' with the family, sleep ( yep, they probably had their own problems pertaining to their own time but you might still agree that their lives were less complicated compared to ousr now).
    WHAT WE CAN DO: Relax and enjoy life more. Okay, this is easier said than done in this our modern cosmos. Yet, there still lies hope for us. Our lives may be so busy but I believe these little actions may go some way in improving our lives:
    * Smile more
    *Be grateful, appreciate what you have. Believe me there is someone out there who wishes to have what you have or be the way you are.
    *Hang out more with your close loved ones. Don't be so caught up in the affairs of life that they feel neglected and left out.
    * Whenever you have the time and opportunity, do what you're passionate about. Don't get so dictated by your daily affairs that you would wind up later in life regretting why you never did it.
    *Learn new skills, read more, learn more, explore
    *Play, laugh, be optimistic, dream big. Remember that the future belongs to those that believe in the beauty of their dreams.
    *Appreciate who you are, you're special, unique and most importantly YOU. love yourself because your Heavenly Father who made you so wonderfully and saw you as good loves you.

       Do you have more suggestions? Please comment below. I hope I've helped in my own way.



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    Mimie Walks