By Anna Russ
Wondering what steps to take to improve your well-being? Just step outside for the answers.
1. Hydration is happiness.
Recurrent UTIs, late-afternoon headaches, fatigue, weight gain—all are potential signs of dehydration. Consuming sufficient amounts of water is essential for healthy, functioning cells, tissues, and organs. Drought, whether in plants or humans, compromises effectiveness of the entire metabolic and immune system. Warm or room-temperature water is best.
2. No monocropping.
We are all witnessing the eco-agricultural devastation that decades of monocropping has caused. Take a cue from the bees: a healthy system requires diversity. Eating seasonally is also key. During the heat of summer, the earth offers us light, crisp butter lettuces and refreshing berries. During fall, the qualities of the plants change to denser squashes, heartier fruits, and root vegetables. Nature is literally offering us the very qualities we need to adjust with the changing seasons. Embrace your local farmers market to harmonize with nature.
3. Rest and digest.
From birds to bears to begonias, all have distinct seasons of activity and seasons of rest. We tend to get caught in the go-faster, go-harder mentality. Like the rest of nature, we have seasonal cycles, with fall being the time for reflection and rejuvenation. Allowing your body and mind time to recover does not make you lazy; it makes you more effective and balanced. This fall, switch up a few power-yoga classes for some zen. Permit yourself to take a day to hibernate.
4. Real light rocks.
Like plants, we can adapt to indoor life, but it is no substitute for sunshine. Vitamin D is essential to our health. Recent studies have found that activated vitamin D is a potent inhibitor of cancer-cell growth. Commit to just ten minutes a day. Walk around the block, office building, park, whatever, wherever. Do not deny yourself rays.
5. Lose the dead stuff.
Detoxification cycles are integral for nature to maintain balance. Anyone with a pooch knows when a change of season is coming, because hair is everywhere! Like dogs shedding hair and trees shedding leaves, we need to shed internal and mental sludge. Fall and spring are ideal times to do this. Ayurveda prescribes a powerful cleanse that utilizes food, spices, and lifestyle regimens to purify the body and mind. Not sure about a full detox? Commit to a week of not allowing negative stuff in. No reading stories or hanging with people that darken your spirit. You will be amazed at the energy you regain!
Anna Russ is the owner/founder of Anna Apotheca in Atlanta, Ga. After decades working in the biotechnology industry focused on oncological diseases, she left to pursue her passion of Ayurveda, providing a more holistic biotech approach to healthy living. She offers an organic Ayurvedic tea and skin-care line, workshops, and certification courses.