by Lauren Rundquist, Functional Health Coach
When you are faced with any type of health issue, the first thing most people typically do is search Dr. Google for the latest tips, tricks, and bio-hacks that promise results fast. Oftentimes, we forget that the basics are much more important than any “gimmick” out there on the web. These are simple concepts that will actually provide the solid foundation we need — upon which we can then build our healthy life. Here are 9 practical tips to get you started on your healing journey:
1️⃣ Lower the intensity: For a period of time, cut out all high-intensity workouts (HIIT, spin class, hot yoga, CrossFit, heavy weight lifting, etc). Physical exertion is extra stress on the body, and the focus now really needs to be on recovery, entering the parasympathetic nervous system. Your body simply cannot heal as easily when it is under any type of additional stress, it needs to be in “rest and digest” mode for now.
2️⃣ Focus on sleep: Your body heals itself when it is sleeping, so it’s crucial to make sleep a priority. Go to bed an hour earlier, turn off all screens an hour before bed and sip some chamomile tea 2 hours before bed. The amount of sleep isn’t as important as the quality of your sleep. If you are sleeping 9 hours a night but waking up multiple times, you may need some extra sleep supporting supplements, like ashwaganda, melatonin, or theanine.
3️⃣ Manage your emotional stress: The goal here is to lower levels of unnecessary cortisol, which is often spiked even by emotional stress. There are so many ways to lower stress in the body– do what feels good and get creative! Some examples would be to use the 4-7-8 breathing method morning and night, meditate, EFT tapping, get massages, gratitude journal, take walks in nature, and/or try taking adaptogens to combat the physiological effects of emotional stressors.
4️⃣ Clean up your diet: Food can either be medicine or the slowest form of poison. A Mediterranean Diet is proven to be one of the healthiest in the world by lowering inflammation in the body and focusing on nutrient-dense foods like nuts, seeds, legumes, complex carbs, grains, and lean protein. Add in more whole foods that are packed with phytonutrients and fiber, and eliminate processed foods and added sugar.
5️⃣ Stay Hydrated: This is a simple thing that most people undervalue! Try to aim for a gallon of electrolyte-infused or natural spring water to properly hydrate your body. All other water like distilled or tap water is stripped of all nutrients and is essentially useless because your body isn’t able to absorb it intracellularly. Oftentimes, our body holds onto water weight because it is dehydrated. Take the two-gallon challenge: for the first two days, drink two gallons of water to flush your system! Then go down to one gallon.
6️⃣ Abstain: To give your body a fighting chance, alcohol must be eliminated during the healing phase, as well as coffee. Alcohol is an obvious toxin and adds stress to the liver (it doesn’t have as many benefits as people would lead you to believe). We need the liver working optimally to excrete toxins and circulating hormones out of the body! Coffee also adds extra stress to the body by stimulating cortisol production. It’s also very acidic and harsh on the gut.
7️⃣ Eliminate daily: Your body eliminates most toxins out of the body when you go to the bathroom, so it is crucial that you poop at least once a day! If you are at all constipated, magnesium citrate works great to help absorb water into the bowels, making it easier to go. You can add as much magnesium as necessary until you get watery stools, then back down your dose and hold there.
8️⃣ Move your body: While high intensity workouts are a no-no, that doesn’t give you permission to become a couch potato! The focus now is on low-intensity movement to keep your blood flowing and burning calories without spiking cortisol. Activities such as walking, yoga, qi gong, or light weights are all acceptable. Keep your heart rate below 70% max (or no more than 50 points above resting heart rate).
9️⃣ Use medical grade supplements, such as NuEthix or Metagenics, which guarantee that what you read on the label is what is inside the bottle. These supplements are made without fillers and potentially harmful ingredients, much like other lower-quality items on the market. Supplements are essential to provide your body what you simply cannot get from your diet alone! The right supplements can fast-track your progress and jump-start your system to get everything working optimally.
If you need help with any health issues including recovery, weight loss resistance, autoimmune struggles, we can help! CLICK HERE to schedule your free Discovery Call with our team.