11 Oct The 5 Pillars of Health
We would all like to enjoy good health, feeling energised, supple, clear headed and looking our best so that we can fully enjoy and live our lives to the full.
When we are young and fit, we often take our health for granted. For those who suffer ill health or have suffered ill health, you know only too well how it impacts your life. Actions you took for granted like nipping upstairs to fetch your shoes suddenly become a major event. The act of putting on one’s shoes and tying the laces can also be a challenge.
I am only too aware that opening a milk container or jar presents a challenge when young and fit, and dread the thought of having to rely on someone else to open packages for me.
My personal desire is to age – as my brother pointed out to me with a fridge magnet when I turned 40 – it is better than the alternative! My goal is to age well – to be able bodied, switched on, interested and inspired by life, to work, because I love it, not because I have to. And to finish my days, well into my 90s, just feeling a little bit worn!
And ‘How?’ you may ask am I going to do this.
For me there are 5 areas of our lives that need to be in balance for optimal health to be enjoyed. I call these the 5 pillars of health:
- Optimal nutrition
- Daily Movement
- Stress management
- Great sleep
- Emotional wellbeing
From my experience in clinic we need each of these areas of our lives to function well, if not optimally, to be able to enjoy good health and get on with life.
I find that clients who come for nutritional guidance also have another pillar that is not functioning fully, and that is because each pillar is interdependent with the other pillars. For instance if you are eating a poor diet, you may also feel more anxious and your sleep maybe disturbed.
On the other hand your diet may be fantastic, but you exercise far too much, which increases stress on the body, can disrupt the gut and disrupt sleep patterns.
I have also met clients who respond extremely well to subtle dietary changes, improved levels of exercise, have little stress around them and sleep pretty well, but just can’t seem to resolve all issues. In these cases I find the 5th pillar is at play – emotional wellbeing. So often old hurts haven’t been dealt with, and the negative emotions can impact on bodily function.
Over the next few weeks I will touch on each pillar in more detail to give you some ideas of what disrupts each pillar and how to address it to get yourselves on the road to fabulous health, feeling and looking amazing.