Four Pillars of Holistic Health

Weight Loss programs has become a fashion now-a-days and professionals, social media or advertising agents are giving quick weight loss solutions to all of us.

Most common questions I have heard are, “I am doing everything but why am I not losing weight?” OR “How to lose 10 kg in a month without exercise?” OR “How do I lose my belly fat? Is their any food for it?”

In my childhood days my mother used to tell me a story(which most of us are aware of) :

Once upon a time, an old man lived with his three sons in a village. The sons used to fight and quarrel a lot among themselves. Their father tried hard to unite them but all in vain. In order to unite them their father arranged a bundle of 10 sticks and ask them to break it by taking one each.They broke it with ease and again started to fight with each other.

Now their father gathered all the 10 sticks and asked them to break the bundle but none of them succeeded. Their father made them learn a beautiful life lesson. “Dear Sons. You could easily break the single sticks into pieces, but failed to break the bundle! So, if you stay united, nobody can do any harm to you. If you quarrel every time with your brothers, anyone can easily defeat you. I request you to stay united.”

This story conveys an essential message to all of us that “Unity is the Strength” or “ Four pillars make a strong house”….

Like the story above, Nutrition is one of the pillars of a successful weight loss program but we should not forget about the other 3 which also contribute equally to our goal of achieving HOLISTIC HEALTH.


FOUR PILLARS OF HOLISTIC HEALTH

NUTRITION : No doubt it is one of the major pillars in a weight loss journey and to keep yourself healthy. It is the science of interactions of different nutrients and other substances of food in relation to health and disease of an organism. Proper nutrition does not mean the so called myth “low carb, low to no fat with high protein diet” OR “Go for fat-free/salt-free diet/Gluten Free diet” and so on. Nutrition means there should be an optimum balance of all macro (carbohydrates, proteins & fats) and micro (vitamins & minerals) nutrients with no concept of fasting or feasting. You should be well disciplined of what you are eating as each and every nutrients have its particular role on our physiological system.

Nutrition is present in all processes of life starting from the very moment the sperm fertilizes an egg, through fetal development in the uterus, to birth, human growth, maturity, old age, and even after death our body serves as nutrition for other organisms too. Anything that involves life and chemical or biochemical movement has nutrition at its core.

EXERCISE : It can be divided into two parts: one is metabolic training and the other is movement.

Metabolic Training is nothing but a well structured exercise regime which stimulates our metabolic rate whereas Movement is to make yourself active throughout the day, like walking 10,000 steps in a day or doing household activities. If you are doing 30 mins of workout daily but sit all day long then it will never increase your metabolic rate. If your metabolic rate is too slow then eating right will not be enough to make you healthy.

STRESS MANAGEMENT: Stress is like one bad boy in the class to destroy class environment. It invites a spike of the cortisol hormone along with insulin to crave for high carbs and fatty foods and we desperately end up of eating pizzas, burgers, pakoras, chips, soft drink etc. Occasionally treating yourself with “Food of your choice” is not a bad thing but when it becomes a habit or an excuse then you really need to put a “Danger Alarm” over your emotions as it often leads to mindless eating and you can never make yourself and your stomach satisfy.

Many diets fail irrespective of logical nutritional counseling because we do not have control on our emotions as it often hijacks physical hunger and need immediate payoff with food.

So we need adopt practices like meditation, relaxing exercises, listening to music or even laughing to lower our cortisol levels.

SLEEP MANAGEMENT : Proper sound sleep (7–8 hours) is important in boosting up our metabolism and appetite. There are two hormones (Leptin-Satiety Hormone & Ghrelin-Hunger Hormone) which controls our appetite. Some researches states that sleep deprivation causes 19% decrease in the level of leptin which causes binge eating as well as craving for salty foods increased by 45%. Most of the time it involves emotional or psychological eating rather than physical hunger.

So if you are having a sleeping problem try to read books or meditate before sleeping or have 1 cup of warm milk .Most importantly keep aside all your electronic gadgets before bedtime.

Hence before opting for any weight loss programs opt for healthy habits first, like revising all your chapters before exam. Measure your sleep, hunger, mood, energy and cravings. Achieve Holistic Health.


SOURCES

  1. Metabolic Effect: doing-everything-right-not-losing weight
  2. Sharma, Sunil; Kavuru, Mani (2 August 2010). “Sleep and Metabolism: Overview”. International Journal of Endocrinology. 2010.
  3. “Joint Collection Development Policy: Human Nutrition and Food”. US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health. 14 October 2014. Retrieved 13 December 2014.
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