Since I can remember I have always enjoyed trying out new health regimes, either that I have learned through my friends or from my endless internet searches . Most of the regimes not sticking with me for long, but a small handful of healthy habits have stuck with me throughout the years.
Now I know how difficult it is to make big changes in your life towards creating a healthier existence, especially when you are a busy mother. But sometimes you just need to start by creating small changes in your habits and build from there. Even minor changes can make a big difference in how you look and feel in your daily life.
Here are my top daily rituals that I believe can make major changes in your health:
Exercise: this goes without saying. Movement is key to optimal health. I know not everyone enjoys working out, or has time to fit exercise into their daily schedule. But working out doesn’t have to be spent in the gym for hours each day. It can be as simple as taking the stairs, walking around the block during lunch, or going on a hike with your friends. Getting the body moving is all that is important. I don’t do a full workout every day-not by any means. But on my off days, I will turn on Youtube video and do a “5 minute abs” workout, or a 10 minute HIIT routine. Search Youtube for what you like; yoga, dance, stretching…there is a video for everything. No computer, no problem, do 50 jumping jacks, and call it a day. Its really so simple.
Warm Lemon Water: This is one of my favorite rituals, and one that I’ve been doing for years. There are so many amazing benefits of this simple routine that your body will be thanking you for this new habit. It improves your digestion, rids your body of toxins, and boosts your immune system. And if those were not enough reasons-it also clears your skin and helps you lose weight. Amazing! Every morning when you wake, simply warm a small glass of water with half a squeezed lemon. Enjoy.
Oil Pulling: Now this is a habit that is tougher than most for me to keep up, but one I would love to do everyday. As of now, I only find time to do so about three times a week. But even at that, I can feel the benefits its had on my dental health. If you haven’t tried it before, you must wonder what the heck I’m talking about. Oil pulling is an old Ayurvedic practice that uses pure oil as a sort of mouthwash. You take a tablespoon of a pure, organic oil (coconut, olive or sesame oil) and swish around in your mouth for 20 minutes. I have found that not being able to communicate with my toddler for 20 whole minutes is nearly impossible, so I only do 10 minutes each time. But it seems to do the trick for me. The benefits include: removing bacteria in your mouth-reducing cavities and bad breath, decreaseing inflammation, detoxing the body and whitening teeth. Just remember, don’t swallow it, and don’t spit it down the sink (spit it in the trash). If you want more information, you can read here.
Dry Brushing: Ok, I know I’m asking you to do yet another thing in your already busy morning, but this takes 5 minutes max (3 if you move quickly like I do). Grab a natural body brush, hop in the shower, and before you turn on the water, stand in the tub and begin brushing your skin. Start at your feet and work in circular strokes up towards your heart. Next do your midsection, then your arms, then your back. Once you reach your back, you will do long strokes down your back. Then turn on the water, and shower as usual. As you know, your skin is the largest organ in your body, and much of your body’s elimination happens through your skin. So dry brushing is a must to keep your lymphatic system working properly and unclogging those pores. It also makes your skin soft as a baby’s bum, and reduces cellulite-yay for that!
Shot of Apple Cider Vinegar: Sounds disgusting, but its really not that bad. To reap the benefits, you really only need a tablespoon a day (you can mix with juice or water if preferred). The benefits include: boosting your immunity, increasing your energy levels, improving digestion and helping with weight loss. Just remember, only use raw, unpasteurized vinegar.
Meditation: This habit is a new one to me, and one I’m not either good at or diligent about. But yet, I still think is very important and worth mentioning. I once heard someone say how most healthy people spend countless hours improving their physical health, but spend no time improving their mental health. This statement stuck with me, and was the catalyst to giving meditation a try. With that said, I am no expert, and have a lot to learn still. But as a beginner, I have found the best way to incorporate a little quiet time in my life is by doing it in the morning before beginning my day. Once I hear Berlin start to stir, I turn on a meditation app and spend five minutes focusing on being present. My app of choice is Omvana, its simple and has guidance mediation for beginners.
Hope these habits have been helpful for you. Please let me know if you start using any, would love to hear how you feel after doing so.