No matter what your destiny may be, you are meant to live your life to the fullest, which means having the best physical, psychological/spiritual, and economic health possible. As long as you are willing to make the effort to educate yourself and to make any necessary changes, you can (and will) have a healthy, happy, and prosperous life. You can have all the knowledge in the world at your disposal, yet it will not benefit you unless you put your knowledge to use: Action speaks louder than words!
So many people continually complain how bad their lives are, for example, they are overweight, they smoke too much, they drink too much, they constantly argue with their spouses, they are not making enough money, and so on. Many times people like to listen to themselves, rather than take any positive action to correct their problems. It is much easier to feel sorry for yourself, than it is to actually fix a problem. It is also easier to blame others, than it is to take any positive action yourself.
In reality, if you are serious about making positive changes to your life, you will find a way to make those changes. Where there is a will, there is a way!
This “Health Tips” section of the web site has been set up to offer you suggestions on how to improve your physical, psychological/spiritual, and economic health.
Section 1: Improving Your Physical Health
If you want to improve your physical health you must do three things:
-Improve your diet;
-Exercise regularly; and
-Reduce the stress in your life.
How to Improve Your Diet:
The foods that you eat can literally kill you, especially if you consume foods that are in the following three major categories:
1) Sugar (Americans, for example, consume on average 146 pounds of sugar per person per year)
2) White flour (Americans, for example, consume on average 150 pounds of flour per person per year)
3) Unhealthy Fats (especially those fats that are used to deep-fry food such as lard).
All of the above types of foods are known as “dead food”, that is, they lack any nutrition and benefit to the human body. To make matters worse, both sugar and fat are alleged to suppress our immune system (the body’s natural defenses for fighting off diseases and germs).
Note: a fourth possible category is salt. Because salt contains high levels of sodium, it can affect your blood pressure. While the body does need salt, it does not need as much salt as people tend to consume.
All of the three preceding food categories are responsible for so many people being overweight, having heart attacks (from clogged arteries), being diabetic, and dying younger than necessary.
Common Foods to Avoid
Some examples of foods to avoid (for the sake of your health) are as follows:
-High-fat cheese (such as, Brie, cream, or processed)
-Desserts (such as cheese cake, cookies, cake, brownies, etc.)
-Chocolate (milk and white)
-Pickled foods (such as pickles)
-Coffee (especially coffee that is not decaffeinated)
-French fries and onion rings
-Gravy (especially on french fries)
-Soda pop (contains a huge amount of sugar)
-Foods containing nitrates such as processed meats (e.g. luncheon meats or bacon)
-Foods containing gluten (i.e. products made with flour) Try its gluten-free version (e.g. gluten-free pizza)
-Any food containing dyes and chemicals such as preservatives (can cause allergies and cancer)
-White rice (too much on a regular basis can lead to Type 2 diabetes)
No doubt anyone who reads the preceding list will find one or more of his or her favorite food. The American and Canadian diets, for example, contain many of the preceding ingredients. It is little wonder, then, that so many Americans and Canadians are overweight: They have grown up gorging themselves on sweet, fattening, and salty foods. Walk into any fast-food restaurant in the United States and Canada and you will be overwhelmed by the amount of processed, fattening food. No wonder so many people complain that it is so difficult to stay slim. Everyone is surrounded by tempting food that usually has a high fat content and is sold in large portions.
While it is not realistic to totally ban all of the above foods from your diet, it is necessary to drastically reduce your intake. For example, instead of having cheese cake for dessert four times a week, try having it only once a week.
The types of foods to put into your diet are, as follows:
-Vegetables (raw and steamed)
-Gluten-free products (Gluten is found in flour. It is a protein that your body has difficulty breaking down. Too much gluten in your diet is alleged to accelerate your body’s aging process.)
-Whole grain food (e.g. whole grain bread)
-Fruit juices (without added sugar) (Note: add mineral water to it such as Perrier to reduce the amount of sugar)
-Poultry (e.g. chicken)
-Margarine made with a blend of healthy oils (canola, flax, olive, safflower, and palm oil)
-Olive Oil (for cooking and frying foods)
-Extra Virgin Olive Oil (e.g. for salad dressings)
Some foods are classified as “super” foods as they are alleged to be able to drastically improve your health. Some of these so-called “super foods” that you may want to put into your diet, are as follows:
-Amaranth Flour (from South America, was grown by the Aztecs)
-Pure, natural grape juice (contains a substance that acts like a natural antibiotic)
-South African Rooibos tea (a nutritious tea that contains antioxidants that will boost your immune system)
-South American Yerba Mate tea (contains antioxidants, is nutritious, and can give you much energy)
-Japanese Green tea (contains high levels of antioxidants, and is very nutritious)
-Kamut flour (an ancient grain originally grown in Egypt centuries ago)
Recommended Nutritional (Diet) Reference Material (For Healthy Living):
“Eat Fat – Get Thin” by Dr. Mark Hyman, M.D. (Available in print and DVD formats)
Note: In Canada and the USA, you can watch his weight-loss nutrition seminars on KCTS 9 (TV station from Seattle, Washington). Make a contribution to KCTS 9, and the material will be sent to you free-of-charge.
Diet Hint: Eat more healthy fats and proteins and eliminate the sugars and carbohydrates from your diet. Sugar is highly addictive, which is why so many food companies put it in their products. It may surprise you to learn that ordinary flour (white flour used to make such products as pizza, hamburger buns, hotdog buns, and bread) can raise your blood’s sugar levels more than table sugar.
Follow a Set Schedule
Eat three meals a day at set times. For example, if your body is used to eating lunch at 12:30 p.m., do not suddenly switch to eating lunch at 2:00 p.m. Also, if possible, do not eat your last meal of the day ( your supper) late at night. A rough rule-of-thumb is to not eat supper past 8:00 p.m., unless you have no choice. Some people eat their supper very late (e.g. 10:00 p.m.), then immediately go to bed. Because there has been no physical activity after you have eaten your meal, your body is more than likely going to break down your meal and store it as fat. If you consider how many calories are in many desserts, you can end up putting on a lot of unwanted weight if you eat late and do not exercise.
The Need to Exercise Regularly
Your body is like a German BMW car: It is designed to be used to full capacity. A high-performance car like the BMW is not meant to sit in the driveway, it is meant to be out on the open road at full throttle!
If you do not exercise, your body will suffer. You can easily put on unwanted fat, your muscles will lack tone and definition and start to sag, your heart muscles weaken, your entire metabolism slows down making you feel sluggish and slow-thinking, and you will also age much faster.
If possible, try and exercise three times a week. Ideally, join a fitness center and do regular workouts. If you are not interested in playing a sport nor in joining a fitness center, then go for a long walk. Do a continuous walk for a minimum of 20 minutes every day. This one simple action can ensure that your body is being regularly exercised. It can keep you slim and slow down the aging process.
Believe it or not, the average human body is designed to last for 120 years, yet few of us ever come close to living that long. Poor health, disease, and stress kill most people by the age of 70 years, which means we are only living for about half of our possible life span. An example of how long the human body can last was featured in 1997 by an American news program which showed TV footage of one of (if not the) oldest women in the world, Jeanne Louise Calment, who lived in France. She had spent all of her life in France, most of it in southern France. When she was interviewed in 1997, she sat upright in her rocking chair and was able to talk to the newspaper reporters and give an interview. She was so old that she had actually met the famous artist, Vincent Van Gogh, in person. He died in 1890! She was born in Arles, France in 1875 (the 19th century), spent most of her life in the 20th century, until her death that same year as the interview, 1997. She died at the age of 122! Until the age of 100 she was still riding her bicycle around Arles. She came close to living into the 21st century! Now that is endurance!
Heart Attacks and Cancer
Unfortunately, most people do not come even close to living as long as the preceding French woman. Each year heart attacks and cancer claim many lives. To make matters worse, the incidence of people dying from heart attacks and cancer, particularly in the United States and Canada, is increasing every year. Men as young as 40 years old are dying from heart attacks and even women who used to be relatively immune to such problems are now dying from heart attacks; and everyone it seems knows at least one person who has died from cancer. According to recent health statistics, the incidence of cancer, particularly in the United States, is rapidly increasing. For many years people have panicked and assumed that the AIDS virus would kill them. However, the number of deaths and infection in the United States from AIDS is minor compared to cancer:
According to the U.S. Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in 2012, there were 20.1 million Americans who had been diagnosed with cancer. The World Health Organization (WHO) has stated that cancer is the second leading cause of death globally. In comparison, the CDC has stated that worldwide there were about 1.8 million new cases of AIDS (HIV) in 2016.
Our environment is killing us, literally! Given all of the preservatives and dyes that are added to our food, the pollutants in the air and in our water, and the high levels of stress in the workplace and home environments, it is no wonder that people are getting cancer and in ever-increasing numbers.
How to Reduce the Stress in Your Life:
Stress is called the “silent killer”. It can be so insidious that you do not even realize the effects it can have upon your body and mind. Unfortunately, too many people ignore the dangers of stress until it is too late, for example, they are in the intensive care unit of a hospital suffering from a heart attack. Heart attacks used to strike only old men but not anymore. As mentioned earlier, men as young as 40 years old, and even younger, are dying from heart attacks due to stress.
Premature Balding – of Women
Another recent stress-related phenomenon has also begun to appear: More and more women in the United States as well as Canada are suffering from premature balding (losing their hair). Yes, what was once the exclusive problem of men has now become a problem for women. The major difference between men and women’s balding, however, is that women’s balding is primarily due to stress, unlike men’s which can also be due to stress, but is most of the time due to the male hormone, testosterone.
Are You Stressed?
You can ignore the stress in your life at your own peril. It can be just as deadly, if not more deadly, as putting on too much weight or never exercising.
Like many people, you may be completely unaware that you are experiencing much stress in your life. The first step in overcoming stress is to find out if you are suffering from high-level stress. Every day of the week, everyone experiences a least some form of stress. Stress is only bad for you when it is either very intense or very prolonged as it can wear your body down, never allowing it to recuperate and repair itself. It is also responsible for sending your blood pressure up, eventually leading to potential heart attacks.
Consult your doctor and undergo any necessary tests if you think you are suffering from high-level stress. Even if you are not aware of any stress-related problems, it is a good idea to go to your doctor on a regular basis for a physical examination. Even a simple blood pressure test can help your doctor diagnose if you are having problems with stress.
Note: Pocket-sized stress cards are also available that you can carry with you in either your purse or wallet. This type of card can tell you if you are experiencing much stress or if you are relaxed. All you have to do is place your thumb on the card and wait for several seconds. The card shows you the results, instantaneously. Do not rely totally on these cards, however. They should only be used as a supplement. Only your doctor has the expertise to help you with stress-related problems.
Do whatever it takes to reduce the stress in your life. Eating a proper diet, exercising regularly, and getting enough sleep will help you to reduce stress.
Ways to Reduce Stress
Additional suggestions to help you reduce stress are, as follows:
1) Try and simplify your life. For example, you may drive regularly to work in the morning, enduring clogged highways with bumper-to-bumper traffic. If you have the chance to take an alternate method, such as, the subway, then do it. It will be less stressful for you and it can make your life easier to handle.
2) Talk about your stress. Do not restrain your feelings and emotions, tell others what you are experiencing. Many people have been in similar situations and may be able to help you. Even if people do not want to hear it, they will at least be able to understand why you appear to be so frazzled or short-tempered.
3) Drink herbal teas or one of the “super food” teas (e.g. Rooibos or Green Tea). Every night before you go to bed, drink an herbal tea. Herbal tea such as Chamomile can be soothing on your system, allowing you to sleep better and longer.
4) Take mini-breaks. Go to a spa or a health resort for the weekend. It is amazing what soaking in a hot tub (or flotation tank) and/or receiving a massage can do to relieve your stress.
5) Meditate. Try energy awareness meditation or yoga to help you relax and to drain the stress from your mind and body. Read any New Age-type magazine for local organizations that offer this type of service. You can learn a practical skill that you can use for the rest of your life, regardless of whatever circumstances you find yourself.
6) Listen to subliminal DVD’s. Some DVD’s carry subliminal messages that can help you sleep, make you more confident, and improve your self-esteem.
If you make the effort to improve your diet, exercise regularly, and reduce the stress in your life, you will last a long time. Your physical health is something that you have direct control over (unless you were born with health problems). In the long-term you will save yourself a lot of time, effort, money, and stress if you take care of your physical health. Once your physical health has gone, you cannot go to your doctor and get a prescription to recover it! By then it is too late. Do not place yourself in this situation. Take control over your life and your health. You will never regret it!
Section 2: Improving Your Psychological/Spiritual Health
Get Involved in Your Community
Take an interest in what is happening in your local community: join local clubs and organizations whose goal is to make your community better (e.g. a local food bank providing food for the poor and homeless). You can also consider joining worthwhile organizations such as those listed in the “Getting Involved” section of this website.
Your Body and Mind
Your body and mind are connected: One has a direct influence upon the other. For example, if you feel depressed, you can actually cause your body’s immune system to be weakened. Also, if your body is continually ill, the illness can affect you psychologically as you can end up feeling depressed. You cannot have good physical health and ignore your psychological/spiritual health and vice-versa. It is a case of all or nothing, as both elements are too inter-connected.
Ways to Improve Your Psychological/Spiritual Health
You must take care of yourself and try to build a positive, healthy environment for yourself. Some suggestions on how to improve your psychological/spiritual health are, as follows:
1) Reduce your stress levels. As mentioned in the preceding section (Section 1: How to Improve Your Physical Health), it is crucial to find ways to reduce the level of stress in your life. Stress has both a physical and psychological component. Either component can wreck havoc on your life. Stress can enter your life by means of a physical action or a psychological action. For example, you work late every night for a week and only sleep four hours every evening. Your body cannot endure going for so long without proper sleep. Because it cannot recuperate itself, the body begins to undergo stress-related symptoms. Your physical health can affect your body’s level of stress.
Your mind (your psychological health) can also have the same effect. For example, if you work in an office where your coworkers are unhappy, hostile, uncooperative, and frequently start arguments with you, your psychological health will be impaired. Such a toxic work environment, will literally make you sick. You will feel depressed at even the thought of spending a few minutes at the office. Your level of stress will increase dramatically, and it can remain at a high level as long as you have to endure such horrible working conditions. If you remain under stress for too long, you can seriously impair your psychological health, which in turn will affect your physical health.
2) Set goals. Life is easier and happier if you are able to set goals for yourself. It is difficult to have good psychological/spiritual health if you have no idea what you are doing in life. Wandering aimlessly is not going to be good for your health in the long-term. It may be fun while you are young and carefree, but it is not going to be the same if you are 50 years old, and still do not have a clue as to what you what to accomplish in life. At that point your life can actually become even more stressful. Your self-esteem is going to be quite low if you have not accomplished anything. You will feel like you are a failure and other people will also perceive you to be a failure. Many people who have no goals can easily become quite depressed and turn to substance abuse just to ease the pain and escape from reality.
3) Acknowledge your spiritual needs. There is an old saying, “Man does not live by bread alone”. This saying was made thousands of years ago and it was meant to remind each of us that we have spiritual needs as well as physical needs. There is a higher life force in the universe greater than each of us. That force created both Heaven and Earth. It does not matter what label you put on that force, it still exists to empower each of us. Probably the most appropriate term is to call that immense life force, God. It does not matter whether you believe in the existence of God or not, your disbelief does not negate God’s existence. The sun will continue to rise in the east and set in the west each and every day, till the end of time.
Sometimes it helps to be around other like-minded believers. Whatever faith you believe in, whether it be Buddhism, Christianity, Moslem, or whatever, make the effort to join other believers (in a temple, church, mosque, etc.). You may be pleasantly surprised as to how much wisdom and help others can give you. Each of us has something to contribute to someone else.
4) Get involved in life. Too many people complain that they have nothing to do, and that they are bored. They may work from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday to Friday, as most people do, but they complain that their non-work hours are unfulfilling. Several years ago a survey was undertaken in the United States to find out how much time people spent watching TV. The results of this survey were, as follows: the average American woman watches 31 hours of TV per week and the average American man watches just over 28 hours per week. It is therefore not surprising that so many people complain about feeling bored and isolated: They are sitting in front of their TVs! It is acceptable to watch some TV in order to relax and to escape from reality (at least temporarily), but when it becomes a major focus of your life, then it can bring on many problems.
There are plenty of people that need help. No matter how bad you may think your situation is, there is always someone who is worse off! Get involved in a cause, it does not matter what the cause is, as long as you find the cause worthy and it helps others. Help save the world’s tropical rainforests, prevent toxic waste from being dumped in your local community, help find shelter for abandoned, homeless children, or whatever. The list of people and organizations that need your help is endless. You may be young or you may be old, it does not matter. It matters more that you feel like you are contributing something positive to make this world a better place to live in. And remember, what you put out, will come back to you! Put out love and kindness, and you will have it come back to you! Become part of a community, contribute something to the world, rather than just concentrating on yourself all the time. You may be surprised as to how much one person can change the world.
Section 3: Improving Your Economic Health
Many people are scared to follow their destiny because they have an image that the embracement of their dreams will bring instability and poverty into their lives. Fear is a very powerful force in many peoples lives. It can keep people shackled to jobs they hate, spouses they detest, and lifestyles that are killing them. What keeps so many people in these situations is the fear of change. I may hate my job, but what happens if I quit and no one else will hire me? What happens if I leave my abusive spouse and I cannot find anyone to be with? What if…? You can drive yourself crazy by thinking of all the “what if…?” scenarios that can happen to you.
The Craving for Stability
People, particularly in the United States and Canada, crave stability, at any cost. Both cultures are very materialistic, which makes people even more apprehensive if they have to make changes in their lives. The fear of a drop in living standards, even if it is temporary, scares many people, to the point where they would rather remain in an unhealthy situation than endure discomfort of any kind. These same people, however, are the first to complain how “rotten” life is. They refuse to make the changes necessary, yet miraculously expect to have a happy, successful life. There is an old saying, “God helps those who help themselves”. If you want changes in your life, then you better make them, do not expect others to make them for you. If you are unwilling to make the effort, why should others?
Living your destiny does not mean living in poverty. All of the successful people in this world became successful because they followed their dreams. Many wealthy people came from poor backgrounds. They did not let their impoverished backgrounds, however, prevent them from succeeding. They knew what their destinies were and went out and lived them to the fullest, reaping immense rewards.
Suggestions to Increase Your Wealth–
If you want to improve your economic health, that is, have more money and wealth in your life, then follow some of these suggestions:
1) Find your destiny and live it. As mentioned above, you must live the life you were born to live. If you are an accountant, yet have incredible musical talent, then perhaps your destiny is to become a musician. As an accountant, you may be scared to make such a drastic career change. If that is the case, then slowly move into your new career. For example, play your music in the evening on a part-time basis. You can retain the stability of your day job, yet follow your passion in the evening. Who knows where it may lead to! Because your destiny will always make use of your natural talents, you are guaranteed eventual success, simply because you are doing something that you can do better than most other people.
2) Diversify your income. Do not put all of your “eggs in one basket”. That is common wisdom that most wealthy people use to their advantage all of the time. If you rely totally upon an employer for your livelihood, then you have given your employer too much power and control over your life. If you lose your job, your whole life is affected. If possible, find a second employer, even if it is on a part-time basis; or follow the next suggestion (suggestion #3).
3) Be creative. Think of as many ways as possible to increase your income. Some hints are, as follows:
-Work overtime and put the extra money into stocks and/or bonds.
-Set up an investment account and have it professionally managed.
-Start a home-based business, for example, writing articles for the local newspaper (print and on-line), designing small business web sites, doing peoples income taxes, multi-level marketing, etc.
-Buy investment-grade real estate.
-Rent part of your accommodation to others, for example, turn your empty basement into a rental unit.
-Take another job, even if it is part-time, and invest the money.
-Buy old furniture, restore them, and then resell them as antiques.
-Rent yourself out as a tour guide and get your holidays paid for as well as earn extra money.
-Become an international courier: You can visit exotic destinations free-of-charge and you get paid for it.
-If you have vacant land, grow organic produce (fruits and vegetables) and sell it. The markup on organic produce is far greater than regular produce (at least double the amount). You can earn extra income and save the planet at the same time!
The list of potential income sources is endless. You will be amazed as to how many ways you can make money. Where there is a will, there is a way! Be open-minded and look around. Eventually you will come across something that interests you and from which you can increase your income. Try to overcome your fears and be open to new ventures. You may be quite surprised to see how fast your assets can increase when you put your mind to it.