The Recipe for a
“Good Night of Sleep”
You need to eat five times a day for optimum health, and a strong body, so you can enjoy an active day and a resting night.
- Breakfast: This is the most important meal of your day. The starting point, the moment when you reactivate your body, your organs, and specifically your brain. A quick breakfast is a big no no. So ditch indulging in grabbing a cappuccino and pastry. Instead, say yes to a rich breakfast of fruit, yogurt, cereals, baked bread, jam, and orange juice; This will give you a real boost and provide you with the slow release of energy. This will sustain you through the first portion of your day.
- Break: Mid-morning have a break so you can curb food cravings until lunchtime, and eat fresh or dried fruit (almonds, nuts, raisins).
- Lunch: You need ready-to-use energy, so take this opportunity to fill your body with fuel. Carbs are great at doing this, and are even better if they are a whole food.
- Break: In the middle of the afternoon have a break. So you don’t get hungry before dinner, have fresh and dried fruit (almonds, nuts and raisins) or yogurt and fruit. Another alternative is a vegetables smoothie.
- Dinner: You have few hours before going to sleep and your body does not need any fuel. However, this is the time when it gets ready to regenerate, replenish and repair while you rest. So give it some ‘oil’ to help this process happen. Proteins that require slow digestion and release and are low in calories are a great option.
Apart from eating well, you need to drink well: 2.5 litres of water per day keep the doctor away! The body is made of 55% – 65% water and we need to drink water daily. H20 helps your body to digest and eliminate toxins.
Water also helps your blood circulation, and enables you to transport nutrients, and oxygen to cells.
It also boosts the health of your internal organs. Your body temperature is controlled by wáter, along with your hydration and sweat mechanisms. Drinking plenty of water can eliminate a headache, since dehydration has an immediate effect on tiredness and the efficiency of the body.
Moreover, it’s been demonstrated dehydration negatively influences mood and the balance of body functions. People who drink 2.5 litres of water a day are less affected by mood swings, hunger, and irritability. They are also more active physically and mentally.
Water can also help obesity. The reason? Apart from giving a sense of fullness without adding calories, it helps you to metabolise lipids better.
Drinking plenty of water in the morning when you wake up also enables your body to regenerate and rehydrate after the night.
Buy a multifunction fitness watch which registers your day in terms of movements and gives you data about your health status.
Look for watches which monitor heart beat, GPS, steps and calories, as well as blood pressure.
Your fitness watch can remind you to move, tell you how many steps you need to walk each day and how many calories you burn, It can help you organize your healthy movement habits, your food regime and your activities.
Move every day, put it on your agenda. Remember walking, even if it seems monotonous and boring, is not only functional but gets you moving. Gymnastics is another good activity.
Any sport which gives you complete body movement, such as running, tennis, basketball, or football, is great to improve your phyisical fitness.
Swimming is another alternative, which also supports your weight with no tension. (I THINK THIS NEEDS TO BE A LINK??? see weekly movement scheme Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday activity + Sunday Seasonal sports OR Monday, Wednesday and Friday activity + Sunday Seasonal sports)
You breathe every moment, but it is such a natural gesture we often take it for granted.
And this leads to bad breathing – many people breath ‘high’, meaning they only use the top part of their lungs and chest.
This does not make full use of the belly in the action, which is essential.
Oxygen is vital for our body, and if breathing is done correctly, you can reduce agitation and stress. There are three different types of breathing:
- energizing: when you need energy
- regenerating: this takes place at night and is detoxing
- purifying: this is when you wake up and before going to sleep
Concentrating on breathing enables you to reduce anxiety and manage your mood.
But how can we breathe better? One method is the “balloon technique” which involves breathing through your nose and inflating your belly,
Then you hold your breath for a few seconds, and breath out through your mouth.
If done slowly, this exercise moves the breath from the chest and allows it to go deeper, with a reduction in diaphragm tension.
In today’s society, we are on 24/7 information overload. And we are expected to be available literally day and night, thanks to our phones and computers.
All this activity does not allow our brain to find its natural rest.
Try and make time during the day to slow down, focus and manage everything that is throwing information at you.
One technique which allows you to focus on “here and now” and meet your need to slow down, is meditation.
This practice enables you to connect with your body and mind, permitting you to find your inner peace and manage your senses.
To give yourself some meditation time, set some fixed moments during your day, or do it when you need to. In particular, when you are feeling overwhelmed.
Stop, close your eyes, concentrate and find your inner peace.
This allows you to find tranquillity, creativity and positivity. If done in the evening, meditation enables you to revise your day and see it with a view of experiences, of a lived life, and allowes you to preparw for sleep.
Meditation can give you an awareness and clarity, that you have done your best and fully lived your day. Your mental and physical health, your relationships, your career and work, are all “analysed.”
Then you can wrap up your day up and get ready for rest. And you can prepare for the day that is to come.