Summer is upon us. On the upside, its arrival puts you in a more relaxed state. And that’s good to combat stress. However, if you will not be prepared for its downside, you could find yourself with more stress than you bargained for.
After all, too much of a good thing can be bad.
Vitamin D and sunbathing
The warmth of the sun on the skin is soothing. This can only be true if you sunbathe from 6 to 7:30 a.m. or from 4:45 to 5:45 p.m. At these times you will not damage your skin.
You also need only 20 minutes of sun exposure daily to give you the vital vitamin D that your body needs.
If you want to ensure that you get vitamin D daily, eat fish liver oils, sardines, salmon, tuna, most fish, milk and dairy products. Or take a supplement, 400-1,000 IU. This way, you spare your skin from wrinkles due to sunbathing and dehydration.
And if you still insist on baking yourself under the sun, take vitamin C-rich foods like citrus fruits and leafy greens. Vitamin C is a natural sunblock.
Caution: Overexposure to the sun causes skin cancer. The sun dehydrates you. Drink water in generous amounts.
An active summer vacation requires a strong and healthy heart. When faced with various food options, consider heart-friendly stuff like leafy greens, garlic, ginger, chili. If you’re hungry, go for fish, lean meats, nuts and low-fat desserts.
Keep your meals satisfying without burdening your digestive system. Engaging in strenuous activities on a full stomach after a heavy meal will cause your heart to work harder. Wait one full hour before playing beach volleyball, parasailing, ziplining, skydiving or scuba diving.
Tea for two
Tea gives you twice the health benefits compared to any sugary fruit juices. Loaded with flavonoids, tea (green, black or oolong) contains powerful antioxidants that neutralize free radicals and clean up the toxins inside you.
They not only keep your cells young, but may protect you from the risk of stroke, according to a report by the American Journal of Epidemiology.
There are some who have the mistaken notion that eating next to nothing solid all day is good. How wrong can this be?
If the purpose is to fit into your favorite bikini or dress that same day, then sporadic or sudden fasting is not the way to go. Saying no to solids is a gradual process.
Day 1: Eat no red or animal meat today (if you ate meat the day before). But have a small regular meal with fish and vegetables, and complex carbohydrates.
Day 2: Vegetables and fruits only.
Day 3: Take only raw vegetables that are juiced. Drink plenty of water.
Day 4: Eat raw vegetables.
Day 5: Light meals, cooked food.
If you follow this process, you can lose anywhere from two to four pounds.
But if you eat heavy the day before, then nothing the next day, you will drive your cortisol (stress hormones) level up. Consistently high levels of cortisol can put a heavy burden on your heart and nervous system.
After the famine of drastic fasting comes the danger of bingeing. That’s the problem of withholding food without following a gentle regimen: It drives your food cravings up.
Starvation causes hunger pangs, turning you into a voracious eater.
If this is the scenario you have been living with, you might have a problem that food (or no food) cannot fix.
Emotionally speaking, your heart may need to be reexamined. Your authority over your body gives you power. And this may be a sign that there are emotional issues in your life you are avoiding or feel powerless over.
As Gary Zukav and Linda Francis state in “The Heart of the Soul,” eating is a sacred ritual. Whatever you eat and drink nourishes your body and your spirit.
Think about it. Maybe vanity is not the real reason you may have problems with food.
Heat stroke. Take plenty of water and juices. Stay in a well-ventilated place. Loosen any tight clothing. Take natural hydrating drinks: coconut water (to bring up your electrolytes), ½ tsp sea salt melted on the tongue followed by two glasses of lukewarm water.
Heartburn and indigestion. Take two capsules of acidophilus three times daily. Take two to four tablets/capsules of activated charcoal, and ginger tea to ease stomach spasms.
Affirm today: “I am one with the power of the sun!”
Love and light!
By Cory Quirino
Philippine Daily Inquirer