What Does It Mean To Be Healthy?

“The word health gets thrown around a lot these days, so let’s take a moment to clarify what I mean when I talk about being healthy. When I refer to health, I’m talking about having a body that is working at its optimum, a body that has the energy to go all day without crashing, a body that can fight off illness and keep you strong. I’m talking about feeling amazing in your skin, in a body that can wake up in the morning, get out of bed, make breakfast, and get moving. I’m talking about having a mind that can be clear and productive, thoughtful and happy.”- Cameron Diaz

 –The Body Book, The law of hunger, the science of strength, and other ways to love your amazing body

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The importance of nutrition for optimum health can be explained to anyone in the simplest manner, yet why do so many people fail to act on the obvious signs of neglect from unhealthy choices and poor nutrition?

I should know, in all honesty, I use to be one of those people and I still am from time to time.

Ask anyone in the fitness industry or anyone who just takes good care of their health, that making choices to live an optimum life is an achievable goal. Yes, it can be very difficult at times but it is achievable. 

A healthy lifestyle is continuous, it’s little day-to-day challenges and choices that have the potential to present in one desired and rewarding outcomes. Practice and progression is taking action of your choices for your overall health.

From choosing breakfast to be a ‘packed with punches of sustained energy’ from poached eggs and steel-cut oatmeal mixed with almond butter (over your comforting childhood favourite ‘sugar packed’ cereal), to waking up two hours earlier to get in a tough strength training session before work (before the daunting eight hours of sitting at a desk with poor posture and no activity), to drinking more water (over soda, which has its own league of bad side-effects), to the remedy (which I often struggle with) of getting at least eight hours of sleep a night.

The lifestyle can also be achieved by facing your ‘perception’ of your own fears, like grabbing the scary bull by it’s intimidating horns, it can create a positive outcome you’d be happily surprised by. Taking the leap towards uncertainty by executing small actions outside your comfort -which scares the hell out of almost all of us-. With patiencenleads success and many rewards. It’s all in the choices, followed by the actions, to get your ultimate desired outcome.

My health transformation did not happen over night, and it still is unfolding slowly, day-to-day. Like anyone else, I have my days of indulgence, as I am only human. However, as I grow, mature, and learn from the people I look up to, I realize, just as with everything else in life that is of importance and significant value that it takes sacrifice and practice to make those choices reality, rather than just a quick-fix fad.

Stacie Rasmussen (C.N.C, Nutristionist from Total Rehabilitation Center) stated in her simplest words why nutrition is so important to one’s health. She was pretty charmed that I asked, because after all, nutrition is her area of self-discipline and practice.

“Why is nutrition so important?

Our bodies need food for energy, it’s a source of fuel.

We need food for its nutrients to maintain life, promote cell and tissue growth. We need fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, good quality meats and low intake of dairy (for adults).

These are our macronutrients fats, carbs and protein. They are our blocking blocks and from them we recieve our micronutrients (vitamins and minerals).

These are for our bodies chemistry.

Most of the vitamins and minerals our body needs, it does not make. We need quality, natural, tasty, fresh, not processed food to get the nutrients our body needs.

Pretty much, ‘you are what you eat!’, a diet filled with processed, deep fried food has limited nutrients. You can’t expect your body to function at an optimal level with such low quality food.” -Stacie Rasmessun

These are just a few simple ways to explain how important your health really is. It may or may not register with you at first, but I cannot express enough that it is not until you actually practice the daily habit of healthy eating that you will really start to notice the wonderful benefits it has to offer your life.

When I have my own practiced periods of eating healthy balanced nutritious-dense foods, and say an opportunity comes where I don’t mind the lethargic feelings that I very well know will come with eating salty or sweet processed food (poutine is my ultimate favourite), then I don’t put up a fight and just enjoy it! I know my practice of good habits will kick in, and I will crave the taste and feeling of optimum energy healthy food gives my body and mind!

So, find what works best for you.

Write down all your goals, and remind yourself them often.

It’s okay to get angry once in a while. If you have settled for a mediocre life that you deep down know you owe yourself more, get a little angry, because sometimes that anger creates just the right action that shifts the positive change. 

Be conscious of the choices you make, know how you feel, and how they affect your body and mind.

Practice self-discipline.

Have patience.

Keep at it, but remember “don’t sweat over the small stuff.” 

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