Six Simple Ways to Immediately Boost Your Health
Welcome to Your Health.Simply.
If you find the conversation around health, nutrition and fitness becoming too complicated, then this is the place for you.
After 30 years of personal and clinical experience, I’ve concluded that for healthy life habits to be achievable and sustainable they must be simple.
Simple choices >>> Simple habits >>> Increased energy and focus >>> Long-term improved quality of life
This all happens one small, simple step at a time.
Let’s get started. Here are six simple choices you can make right now that will increase your energy throughout the day and improve how you feel about yourself at the end of the day.
Stop drinking fluids 30 minutes before you start to eat.
That’s right, no drinking during your meal. Your stomach is a container of a highly acidic fluid called hydrochloric acid. One of its main purposes is to kill pathogens in your food and break down this food so the small intestines can absorb the nutrients.
Drinking fluids weakens this acid, resulting in poorly digested food and bugs getting into your small intestines.
As a result, here are a few things that happen to your digestive system:
Trust me, none of these are fun, and you can help avoid them by abstaining from drinking during meals.
There are exceptions to choice #1.
You can drink fluids that are fermented:
These fermented products contain lactic acid, which can assist digestion—to a degree. While a glass is helpful, a bottle is not.
Wait 30 minutes after eating before you drink again.
If you have been drinking fermented drinks during a meal, that is great. A second glass may be fine. Just stay away from non-fermented fluids for thirty minutes. If your meal includes red meat, waiting an hour is best.
Let the stomach acid do its job.
When to drink coffee?
Coffee or any caffeine is a stimulant. When you drink it matters more than you may think.
The endocrine system, that beautifully intricate and powerful hormone producer, has been waking people up forever. Coffee does not create energy—rather it slams into the adrenals, and the adrenals release a wave of adrenaline that propels the sympathetic system upwards.
Coffee first thing in the morning jumpstarts your day in an adrenaline-fueled stress response. By noon you may start to crash from this rush and reach for that cheap fuel—carbohydrates. Sound familiar?
There is a better alternative.
When you get up, hydrate yourself with a large glass of room-temperature water and (if you like the taste) the juice of half of a lemon.
Wait 30 minutes or more for this to absorb.
Then eat something—anything—from a small organic apple to a full eggs-and-toast breakfast.
Starting your day with fuel is essential. Intermittent fasting is all the rage right now and backed by science. However, unless you are battling serious health issues, keep it simple and do what your body is designed for—breaking the fast with healthy food.
By this time, you have:
Hydrated your body
Allowed the endocrine system to do what it does best
Supplied some good fuel
Waited thirty minutes for this to digest
Now have your coffee and really enjoy it. Your body will thank you.
Stop eating three hours before bedtime.
The digestive system needs time to rest. The best time is at night while you sleep.
The liver is very active between 1 and 3 AM, cleaning up the body from the day before and getting you ready to wake up fresh and energized. Eating late and going to bed with a full stomach burdens the liver. When you wake up feeling heavy and grumpy, it can indicate that this hard-working organ is struggling.
*Again, here is an exception.
If you are like me with a fast metabolism and brain that refuses to shut off sometimes, you may find yourself waking up in the night for no reason. If I consume a small amount of oil 30 minutes before going to bed, I enjoy a deeper sleep.
The theory behind this is that the brain consumes about 30 percent of calories and never stops working, even during sleep. So, it needs fuel at night.
I have tried eating glucose (applesauce, non-dairy yogurt), but my blood sugar crashes in the night. Instead these calorie-rich oils improve my sleep and require little digestion to become available to the brain:
When I take any of these before going to sleep, I wake up more refreshed and ready for the day.
CAUTION: If you suspect you are dealing with any gallbladder issues, be mindful of the amount of oil you take before bed. Start with half a teaspoon.
This is a tough one for some, so please sit down first.
Coffee and dairy simply do not mix. That’s right, milk and coffee are not the winning combo that conventional wisdom has led you to believe.
When coffee is mixed with dairy in any form—milk, cream or butter from a cow, goat, sheep—it produces a toxic sludge that causes inflammation throughout the entire digestive system.
I know, everyone is doing it. There are also a lot of people struggling with chronic health issues. Coffee mixed with dairy is not the cause of all this, but it sets up the digestive tract for a host of problems.
Good news! There are alternatives and solutions:
Try drinking a high-quality, fresh-roasted organic coffee black.
Can’t go all black? Try a non-dairy milk alternative.
Avoid soy, which is hard to digest.
Blend MCT oil and coconut cream with your coffee.
I recommend the Blue Monkey brand for the taste.
These are six choices you can start tomorrow. Choose all six at once or pick one to try every week.