- Eat Real Food
- Keep Moving
- Spend time in nature
- Get Up with Down Time
- Take Precautions
Eat Real Food
The use of food as a holistic treatment is not commonly recognized. Food affects body, mind, emotions, and spirit and can promote holistic wellness, or can contribute to physical or mental illness.
Processing foods changes them to substances that lack the form and variety of nutrients the body needs, while sugar, excess salt and other substances harmful to health are generally added.
A holistic diet is based on the natural foods humans ate over 100,000 years of evolution. A diet high in fruits and a variety of green leafy and root vegetables in season with smaller amounts of protein, whole grains and good fats provides holistic nutrition. Organic meat and wild fish are antibiotic-free and their natural diet and living-conditions produce nutrients that are better for us than those in raised in factory-like conditions.
Regular daily exercise is another holistic treatment that contributes to many dimensions of holistic wellness. Among other things exercise helps the body:
- absorb nutrients
- get rid of wastes and toxins,
- burn calories,
- strengthen bones, joints and muscles
- control blood pressure
- strengthen the immune system, and
- improve mood.
The increase in heart rate and breathing caused by exercise strengthens the heart and lungs and delivers more oxygen to every cell in the body.
Brisk walking for 30 minutes a day (together or in 10 minute segments) will improve heart health, and an hour a day will also decrease obesity, the risk of diabetes and certain cancers.
Spend Time in Nature
We are part of nature and spending time outside in the elements in a natural setting brings us home to ourselves and is holistic treatment for the spirit.
Live in a city? Walk in a park or find a tree, a garden with flowers, or a patch of grass to connect with. Indoor plants, window boxes and a natural view from a window can connect the house-bound to nature.
Get Up with Down Time
Sleep is an important holistic treatment for healing or disease prevention. Adults need eight to nine hours sleep a night, though most people sleep for less than seven hours.
Recent studies show that lack of sleep is linked to major health problems including heart disease, obesity and type II diabetes.
Regular use of day-time active relaxation techniques also foster holistic wellness by:
- decreasing stress
- strengthening the immune system
- lowering blood pressure and cholesterol levels
- increasing resistance to tumours and viruses, and
- reducing chronic pain.
Some techniques that achieve these results are meditation, yoga, the relaxation response, and mental imagery.
Holistic treatment includes prevention. Bodily health is an important part of holistic wellness and is more likely if sensible precautions are taken to prevent injury or illness.
Avoid toxic substances. If you smoke - stop! Shun garden pesticides or herbicides, and wash bought fruit and vegetables under running water, or soak for up to an hour.
Use green non-toxic biodegradable cleaning products, and non-toxic paint. Read lables on cosmetics. They may contain toxic ingredients.
Dispose of toxins and unneeded medications where they will not enter the ground water.
Seat belts in cars, and helmets on bikes and in and sports prevent avoidable head injuries, and the use of condoms can prevent sexually-transmitted infections, including HIV.
Frequent hand-washing is an easy, inexpensive holistic treatment that lowers the chance of infections spread by viruses (colds and flu) or bacteria.
Flossing teeth prevents gum disease, an inflammatory process that increases the risk of heart disease.