Creating and maintaining a healthy BODY may be the most difficult of the 4 Cornerstones to achieve with so many unhealthy, yet pleasurable influences surrounding us during our day-to-day lives. Over eating and making poor nutritional choices is just plain easy and fun. Eating the wrong types of food, and often too much of them, can bring great pleasure. (I love a moist and rich carrot cake, topped with cream cheese frosting – yum!) Let’s be honest – when do we ever crave apples? Where is the joy in that? A cheese covered nacho plate smells and tastes much more appetizing.

What about water? How boring! No flavors, colors, fizz or sparkles. Compared to soda, coffee, juice, or better yet – an ice cold beer, water just doesn’t measure up.

And then there is exercise. Do we sincerely aspire to push, pull, run, jog, press, lift, rope, spin, stretch and move, or does sleeping in or sitting back in that favorite recliner sound much more enjoyable?

We know that building a healthy body is without question one of the 4 Cornerstones to becoming a healthy BEING. The sharpest MIND and purest SOUL will both fall short alongside an ailing body, for each is connected to the other. The human body is beautiful, strong, resilient and a miraculous instrument. Our bodies are temples, deserving of great respect for giving us life. If poor lifestyle choices create weaknesses in the body, the entirety will eventually crumble.

In Part 3 of the 4 Cornerstones series, we focus on how to create and maintain a strong and healthy body by examining eating, drinking and moving. No lecturing or guilt. Merely a new perspective for how to live with a healthier body.

We Are What We Eat

Aquariums are designed to host a variety of water bound creatures, whether it be fish, frogs or plants. Caretakers of aquariums must keep proper water pH levels; prevent algae from growing on the glass walls; and ensure that the water contains the proper levels of oxygen for these animals to thrive. When the conditions in an aquarium become imbalanced, we can see the effects of poor maintenance directly through the glass. The water may turn foggy or the glass appears green. The cause and effect is clear.

Unfortunately, the human body is not as transparent. People may appear to be entirely healthy on the outside, however, we can be destroying essential organs and biological systems on the inside. So much of our hidden internal health condition roots from what we eat. The nutritional content of what we consume determines the composition of our cell membranes, blood, hormones and bone marrow.

How important is the nutritional content of what we consume? Considering that the average adult must replace 300 billion dying cells a day to old age, the food that humans eat is critical to good health. Our bodies are literally manufacturing new cells out of the food that we digest. Junk-in converts to junk-out at the cellular level. To the contrary, good nutrition leads to strong and robust cells that makeup the essential elements to a healthy life. For instance, Cancer Prevention Research published a research trial in June, 2014 indicating that digested broccoli components literally detoxes the body from harmful, cancer causing chemicals.

Being mindful of the ingredients that we ingest plays an important role towards healthy living. Eat well, live well. Eat poorly, live poorly. The connection is “clear.”

We Are What We Drink

Nearly 60% of the human body is composed of water. H2O is very important. People can only survive for 3 to 5 days without it. Without water, human cells deteriorate and dry up.

Health care experts suggest that we drink at least 8 glasses of water of day. Why?

Water –

Provides energy;

Helps with absorption of nutrients;

Aids circulation;

Creates saliva;

Regulates body temperature;

Elevates mood;

Treats headaches;

Aids digestion;

Contributes to weight loss; and

Flushes out deadly toxins.

Conversely, try this experiment. Empty a plastic soda bottle by about 1/3. Replace it quickly with milk and tighten the lid. Keep the bottle still for 24 hours and watch the artificial and chemical ingredients fall to the bottom and separate from the carbonated liquid. The lower layer of the bottle will eventually appear like a dump of waste.

So, drink up! More water please.

We Are How We Move

The average woman needs to eat approximately 2,000 calories a day to maintain weight and 1,500 a day to lose one pound per week. An average man requires 2,500 calories daily to maintain weight and 2,000 a day to drop one pound of weight per week. The weight management calculation isn’t complicated. If we consume more calories than we burn, the human body stores the fat. Alternatively, if we use up more calories that we bring in, the body loses weight.

Yet finding the right balance is just down right hard! But in today’s high tech world, excuses are running thin. Between apps, fitness watches and more, the ability to count calories and monitor our caloric intake has never been easier. We just have to do it.

Burning calories yields other benefits in addition to weight control. The CDC recommends at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week to reduce risks of cancers, heart disease, stroke and other chronic diseases. Regular exercise elevates mood, reduces fatigue, increases intimacy and promotes better sleep. Effective exercise should include a mixture of both cardio and weight training. Cardiovascular exercise enhances circulation, while weight training strengthens muscle groups. Both goals are important.

So what we eat and how much we eat is vital to fostering a healthy BODY. The same holds true for what we drink. And moving, simply moving, will increase the quality of our lives. Will I continue to enjoy a carrot cake slice every once in a while? You betcha! That said, I know that carrots without the cake will carry me much further to healthy living.

Live tobe4HEATLH A healthy MIND, BODY and SOUL creates a healthy BEING.  #2B4H