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1. Sleep.  Before the advent of electric light in 1879, the average person slept 10 hours.  Loss of sleep has been shown in research to have a cumulative negative effect on the overall outcome of energy production, glucose metabolism and aging.  Proper sleep is essential to replenish energy reserves, rebuild and repair muscle tissue, reenergize the immune system and cleanse the brain of excess cellular debris.  The body repairs itself in the delta sleep phase, which occurs in the early hours of the morning, so the later you fall asleep, the less your body will repair itself for the morning.  One hour before midnight is equal to two hours after midnight.  Do not eat (especially high-carbohydrate foods) too close to bedtime.  Eating before sleep can alter your HGH (human growth hormone) production due to increased insulin levels.  Not eating for two or three hours before bedtime allows for maximum HGH peaks.

 2. Increase Your Water Intake*. We are mostly water!  Even our bones are one quarter water.  Our muscles are three quarters water and the wet matter of your brain is 85% water. Your blood and lungs are over 80% water.  Next to oxygen, water is definitely your most important nutrient for sustaining life.  Many people believe they get enough water from their juice, coffee, tea and sodas.   Coffee, tea, and pop contain caffeine which actually dehydrates you, while pop leaches calcium out of your body because of high phosphorus content. Also with pop, you are ingesting white refined sugar or artificial sweetener which is even more dangerous. The average person needs about 1/2 of their body weight in ounces of water. So for example: if you weigh 120 lb, you need 60 oz. of water a day! That's a  little over 7 cups (one cup is 8 oz.). Studies show that for every kilogram of fluid lost, there is a significant drop in the efficiency with which the body produces energy.  So if one of your goals is to increase your energy level, then drink more water.  Water helps to hydrate the inside of your cells, thereby improving excretion of wastes and improving absorption of nutrients.  Here are some interesting statistics:  75% of  North Americans are chronically dehydrated.  In 37% of  people, the thirst mechanism is so weak that it is often mistaken for hunger.  One glass of water shut down midnight hunger pangs for almost 100% of dieters studied in a Washington study.  Even MILD dehydration will slow down one's metabolism as much as 3%.  Lack of water is the number one trigger of daytime fatigue.  Research indicates that 8 - 10 glasses of water a day could significantly ease back and joint pain for up to 80% of sufferers.  A mere 2% drop in body water can trigger fuzzy short-term memory, trouble with basic math, and difficulty focusing on the computer screen or on a printed page.  Drinking 5 glasses of water daily decreases the risk of colon cancer by 45%, plus it can slash the risk of breast cancer by 79%, and one is 50% less likely to develop bladder cancer.  We suggest you read "Your Body's Many Cries for Water" by Dr. Batmanghelidj , who has done extensive research linking chronic dehydration and pain and disease.  This research has helped hundreds of thousands of people suffering from a variety of pains and degenerative diseases regain their health.  You can find out more information at www.watercure.com.

 3. Sunshine. It is important to get exposed to sunshine! It helps to produce vitamin D in your body which helps with the absorption of calcium.  Here are some other things that sunshine can do for you:  decrease the resting heart rate, decrease respiratory rate, decrease lactic acid, increase cellular oxygen uptake, increase muscular strength, decrease blood pressure, lower blood sugar, increase tolerance to stress, reduce cholesterol, decrease triglyceride levels, inhibit cancer cell formation and stimulate the immune system.  Sunlight affects the pineal gland, which produces melatonin, a hormone that cues the body to sleep.   You should get at least half an hour of sunshine each day.  Make sure you don't have any glasses, sunglasses or contact lenses on during this time.   Let the sunlight bathe your eyes.  The best times for exposure are between 10 am and 2 p.m. which would also be a good time to do some exercise of your choice.*see www.shirley-wellness-cafe.com/sunbath.htm     Which leads us to the next health tip.

 4. Exercise Regularly.   The best exercise is walking! Try to do about 2 miles or 3 kilometers a day. You can start at smaller distances at the beginning and progress to more later.  Start slowly, and then gradually increase your speed.  Walk fast enough to raise your heartbeat, but not so fast that you become breathless.   Breathe deeply expanding your lower diaphragm, rather than taking shallow breathes, and concentrate on exhaling completely.  Your stomach shouldn't be rigid but expand with each breathe naturally.  If you have the stamina and flexibility, take short jogs occasionally and then return to a brisk walk.  Make sure you have the proper footwear on that gives good ankle and arch support.  This is a good time to enjoy the beauty of God's creation, especially if you are blessed to live in the country.  In the wintertime, enjoy snowshoeing, or cross-country skiing.  The best exercise is done outdoors where you can breathe fresh air and enjoy the sunshine at the same time.  Make it a habit for life, to get outside at least once every single day.

 5.  Nutrition.   We were created to function optimally, physically and mentally, by eating food that nourishes the entire body.  The best foods, of course, are organic: that is foods that have been grown without pesticides or herbicides.  Over half of our diet should consist of organic raw fruits and vegetables.  The remainder is made up of organic grains, nuts, seeds and oils.  The best oils are organic flax seed oil and cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil.   Organic, free-range eggs can be eaten freely.  And small amounts of  fish and lean, organic meats.  If raw, organic milk is available, it can be made very easily into kefir or yogurt, which are also extremely healthy.  (See Kefir culture, under Farm Produce). The only sweeteners to be consumed should be natural maple syrup and raw honey in small quantities.  The only salt consumed should be Sea Salt, which is raw and unrefined and full of trace amounts of minerals from the ocean.   (You will find our own organic lamb meat and organic eggs, kefir culture, olive oil, maple syrup and raw honey for sale under Farm Produce.) Important Magnesium suplements ! click here

 6. Temperance.  Our bodies were not created to function optimally with foods which rob us of vital nutrients. If we want to enjoy life and good health to the fullest there are certain substances which must be removed from our diet, forever. These include all drugs, caffeine, white sugar, white flour, white salt, alcohol, chemical preservatives, food colouring and all processed and packaged or canned foods. For example, caffeine is a natural diuretic. It forces more water out of the body than one consumes in the beverage!  Alcohol also dehydrates the body; the brain is particularly sensitive, hence hangover headaches. The effect of caffeine on the brain is energy depletion.  If taken repeatedly, caffeine eventually exhausts the brain. When the brain needs energy reserves to cope with a crisis, it will be less than effective because it is depressed. The energy reserve-depleting effect of caffeine on the brain is one of the primary causes of attention-deficit disorder. Caffeine is naturally designed to cause stupefaction of the brain. Caffeine is used by the coffee plant as a nerve warfare chemical against its predators. Caffeine inhibits the nervous system and the memory mechanisms of its food chain predators so that they lose their art of camouflage and become less alert and less able to protect themselves. They thus become much easier prey for their own predators. We humans consume the plant's chemical poison as a pleasure-inducing beverage. Over-consumption of sodas and other caffeine-containing beverages is largely why many children in the United States have reading and learning problems.  For the same reason, more American children develop health problems such as allergies and asthma.

  In order to digest sugar, we must draw valuable minerals from our bodies such as chromium, zinc, vitamin C, calcium and the B vitamins plus oxygen. We develop an overproduction of insulin and eventually develop diabetes. Our immune system is immobilized for four hours after eating sugar. A startling animal study published in the prestigious Journal of Nutrition in September 1998 revealed that animals consuming fructose developed significant aging of the skin, which would contribute to advanced wrinkling in humans, illustrating how a common sweetener can cause accelerated aging in the body. Galactose from milk sugar has been associated with stiffening of the heart's blood vessels and stiffening of the lens of the eyes.  Glucose, fructose and galactose are all dietary sugars that appear to advance the aging process in surprising ways.*

 7.  Trust in God.   Until this point, we've been dealing with the physical aspects of our life.  But we are not just flesh and blood beings, but we are spirit and soul as well.  And our spirit, soul and body are interconnected.  Our emotions greatly affect our physical body, and science as already proven that.  We are beings that have been created by God, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.  Created in His image, our main purpose in life is to know our Creator personally.  We could spend our entire life trying to fill the emptiness in our soul with a thousand different things.   People do all kinds of things trying to deal with guilt, shame, grief, loneliness, abuse and rejection.   But things can never replace the loving and healing touch of our heavenly Father.   Well, you may ask, what separated us from God in the first place?  God's word, the Bible, teaches us that sin, our breaking of the law of God, separates us from God.  The Bible also teaches that there is not a single moral or charitable act that can bring you back to God.  That is called self-righteousness.  So, you may ask, how can anyone ever find peace with God?   God, in His great love for us, made a special way back to Him.  If you want to find out what that way is, it is outlined in much greater detail at www.thewordofhope.com  

 * See " Bio-Age Ten Steps to a Younger You"  book by B. J. King and Dr.M.Schmidt. 

  

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