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Your Lifestyle is Your Best Medicine
Experience and research informs why African-American men are sometimes suspicious of traditional medical institutions in America. This can create a reluctance to participate in regular medical checkups and hesitation to consult a healthcare professional in the early stages of chronic disease.
Does this sound like someone you know? Does it sound like you? If so, all the more reason to make the extra effort to practice a healthier lifestyle. Educate yourself about your family’s disease risk factors and monitor your body and psyche for signals that suggest a divergence from the norm. Be proactive about becoming more self-aware of genetics and your body’s functioning.
As I work with clients as well as with my own health quest, I observe a seasonal protocol of health maintenance. You can use the “spirit of the season” to guide your health assessment, diet, fitness routine, sleep schedule, activity level, social activities and more. All of these factors play an integral role in maintaining your health and wellbeing. Here are suggestions to get your seasonal health protocol started.
Start the season of with a cleansing diet. Cleansing your body, especially your liver, colon and blood can prove to be a life changing experience. Some common benefits of a properly conducted seasonal cleanse are: clearing of the skin, increased energy level, restful sleep, improved alertness and improve digestion. There are hundreds of books available on cleansing or detox diets. You can also find a holistic health practitioner in your area that will develop a detox program for you. It may take a bit of research but it’s important to find a cleansing diet tailored tMany of them conduct seasonal detox groups around the equinox and solstices just for this purpose. Find one you are comfortable with and let this be your “Spring Cleaning.”
If you are not seeing a physician regularly, have a health and fitness assessment. Have a consultation with a holistic practitioner and/or a fitness trainer. They will assess your present condition and tell you where you can make improvements. Many practitioners give free assessments. Based on the assessment, they can develop a health regimen or fitness program that you can implement on your own. A professional fitness or holistic practitioner can also advise you to seek mainstream medical help if and when an assessment reveals something beyond their scope of practice.
Get light, get healthier, and get strong. Many people rely on an alarm clock to rise in the morning, a sign you may not be getting enough zzzz’s. Try to get up at or before the crack of dawn. Morning is the spring season of the daily cycle. Use it to seed the rest of your day. If you can manage this, spend at least 10-15 minutes in prayer or meditation to “get your mind right and your soul aligned.” Next, spend 20 minutes executing a full body workout. Exercise in the early morning will get both your body and mind on your “A Game.” Follow this up with a fortifying breakfast of seasonal fruit, raw or steamed vegetables and lean meat, fowl or fish.
Spring is the time to sow the image seed of wellness. I can hear you saying, “what the hell?” But consider that your mental thoughts are triggers for behavior and your soul will provoke the behavioral habits to make an image reality. So create an image of your ideal physical, mental, emotional, social, professional and spiritual life. Capture that image and the feeling that it evokes within your being. Sit with this image every morning and immerse yourself in the energy it radiates.
Begin taking an active and conscious role in your health. Remember, your Lifestyle is your best medicine.