As it's Women's Health Week this week, I thought I'd put my simplest and easiest health tips for women all together so if you were able to work through this list and even implement just one that's new for you, you'd be giving yourself such a gift!
And is there any better gift than the gift of health? We often don't realise how lucky we are to live in our bodies pain free or dis-ease free our until something goes wrong...so prevention of health issues and dis-ease is SUCH a good idea. We really need to be actively looking after our mind and body every single day and teaching those around us to do the same.
Some of these tips might be things you are already doing which is fantastic but I hope you can add more healthy habits to your day. I've broken the health tips down into areas of our mind and body that need lots of care.
- Eat good fats every day! Good fats such as avocado, coconut oil, olive oil, oily fish, raw nuts and seeds and the fats in grass fed beef contain omega 3's which are essential to our hormonal health. We actually need lots of good cholesterol in our body to manufacture our hormones and keep them in balance
- Eat lots of broccoli and raw carrots! Women can often be a bit estrogen dominant especially if carrying any extra body weight. This puts progesterone out of balance which is a reproductive hormone that can help us feel calmer and happier (it dips down before getting your period...PMS anyone?!) and eating lots of cruciferous veggies is a massive help in decreasing estrogen dominance (also a cause of things like endometriosis and fibroids). So veggies like broccoli, cabbage, kale and cauliflower which contain compounds that bind to excess estrogen and will escort it out of the body! Eat these veggies cooked with some butter, linseed oil or olive oil drizzled over the top so you can absorb all those lovely nutrients. And eating just one raw carrot a day can also help with this estrogen dominance and particularly if you suffer from hormonal headaches or migraines. A special insoluble fibre in raw carrots also help rid our body of extra estrogen and helps to balance our hormones.
- Stay away from hormone disrupters! Plastic contains a whole host of chemicals which can disrupt our hormones. Use glass or steel storage for your foods and liquids and stay away from plastic wraps! Parabens are another hormone disrupter and commonly found in a lot of personal care products so make sure anything that you are putting on your body is as natural and low tox as possible to avoid these nasties!
- Stay away from any contraception that involves synthetic hormones
- Cut down your alcohol consumption
- Flower essence blend I most recommend if you are suffering from hormonal disruption or is the Female blend or PMS Pack. Also check out my Ask Alisha blog about Periods and Giving Yourself a Break.
- You know this one already...you must get as much sleep as possible. If you haven't been getting enough each night, make sure you catch up with a nanna nap when you can. Even if this means scheduling in a nap on the weekend. Our sleep does get more disrupted as we age due to the serotonin/melatonin decline so you may find yourself just naturally sleeping fewer hours a night than you used to. But this does not mean you can stay up and watch tv later and later! Go to bed early, read a book and let your body and mind wind down and you will see your sleep quality getting better. The sleep we have after watching screens too late or too much is definitely not a good quality sleep. We do so much repair while we sleep so not getting enough quality sleep is a bit like never charging your phone properly!
- If you find yourself waking in the night at odd hours, you may be suffering from too much stress and higher cortisol levels than you should have which is affecting your sleep hormone melatonin. This means more rest and relaxation is needed. Some meditation, some calming herbs and anything you can do to take a load off yourself (will cover more in stress health below)
- The flower essences I recommend for better sleep are Slow Down and Sweet Dreams
Gut and Immune Health
I have a lot of info on gut health and encourage you to read more HERE on this topic if you haven't already but I simply can't have a Heath Cheat Sheet without mentioning gut health! It is the front line of our whole body's health.
- Make sure you are consuming friendly bacteria daily. So embrace your fermented foods. Get into sauerkraut, kefir, naturally fermented veggies, kombucha or even taking a daily probiotic
- Work on keeping your stress levels down
- Stay away from things that are KNOWN to harm our gut lining. These are refined foods, sugar, gluten, alcohol and a lot of dairy. I'm not asking you to go cold turkey on all these things but they really need to be limited if you want to feel better and get on top of a lot of your symptoms
- Eat more plant foods and gut healing foods like bone broths.
- If suffering from many recurrent infections, please make sure you have your Vitamin D levels checked! And supplement with this vitamin if needed. Also make sure you are getting plenty of Vitamin C and zinc. When I'm sick or fighting something off, I take herbs, extra Vit D, C and zinc. For more Immune health tips, please read my Immunity blog HERE
- Flower essences to help with gut and immune health are Help, Slow Down and Courage
Muscle and Bone Health
As we age, this is an area that definitely needs more attention than we give it when we are younger!
- Make sure you are eating lots of green leafy veggies for your calcium levels and again make sure you know your vitamin D levels are ok and supplement if needed as this vitamin is essential to bone health and warding off osteoporosis
- Weight training of some sort to increase bone density and balance weight is also so important. whether you use weights or use your body weight in some sort of resistance training, doing 2- 3 session weekly will really increase your overall health
- Move your body every day! Walking for 30 mins every day is one of the best things you can do for your physical and emotional health. But however you love to move that gorgeous body of yours, do it and do it daily.
- Stretch! As we get older, our collagen levels and flexibility decreases but stretching your body as often as you can really help the health of our muscles, posture and believe it or not, our immunity! Get into yoga or pilates or find a series of stretches that work for you and get into loving that feeling of being all stretched out.
Stress and Emotional Health
I've left the biggest until last and the area that I'm often so passionate about. I know that this area can be often overlooked and so I harp on about it (a lot) and it's probably why I fell so in love with the flower essences side of my studies because they make a lot of changes and headway in this area for those that take them. But there is a lot we can do for our emotional health and stress levels!
- Saying no more! Women do so much for everyone else and I find a lot of us have an inbuilt need to please everyone around us and make sure everyone else is ok. This is one of the best and worst traits about us. It is often the reason we have so many females suffering from adrenal fatigue and high stress levels. You need to prioritise yourself more and that may mean saying no to others more.
- Daily exercise is crucial for emotional health and keeping stress levels down. Emotions are just energy in motion and using your body to move that energy through helps relieve the feeling of that pent up backlog of energy!
- Stopping! Just stopping and allowing yourself to have catch up days or mental health days or whatever you want to call them is amazing for your health. You do not need to be 'on' or 'productive' all the time and in fact, it is harmful to your health to be so.
- Allowing yourself to feel and talking about how you are feeling. Whether that is to a friend or a professional, get your feelings out there and in the open
- Meditate. One of the best ways for the busy over thinking brain, is just to allow it to be still. Meditation apps or any meditation recording that you can listen to as often as you can, or simply allocate yourself some time to be still and watch a candle flame or the ocean rolling in. Thoughts will come and go but just allow them to do this and keep coming back to your breath. One of my favourite sayings comes from slowing down your breathing and focusing on the breath - 'And notice the pace at which your body wants you to live'
- And of course the flower essences to help those emotions move through you are such a big help in keeping your emotional health in check and your stress levels down. Everyone needs different ones to help them at this moment in time so I will let you look at the full range HERE
So I hope this list will be of help to you in some area of your health. There is so much more to go into on every area but I had to keep it as summarised as possible for it to be a cheat sheet! Lol!
So what is something that you are going to do for yourself today?
Yours In health,