These GADDESS Principles Will Keep You Healthy Even Into Old Age

7 principles that cover every aspect of health summarized into one word

Photo by Gabin Vallet on Unsplash

First and foremost, I would like to present a disclaimer.

The GADDESS principles are not real and you won’t find anything about it on Google.

Why not?

Because these are principles that I made up and personally use.

Now before you leave to go read another article, hear me out.

The GADDESS principles stand for:

Green Tea

Almonds

Diet

D vitamin

Exercise

Sleep

Stress

I believe that if you stick with these principles for your entire life, you will be far healthy than the average person. This will help ensure that you even remain healthy into old age which is when people start becoming weak.

Now, you may be wondering why did I not include green tea & almonds in the Diet section of the GADDESS. The reason is because I wanted to highlight the importance of both of these foods.

Now, let’s get started.

Green Tea

I believe green tea is one of the best “fluids” that you should be regularly drinking to keep your body strong and healthy for many years to come.

Of course, water should be your #1 fluid but if you want to supplement another fluid with water, it should be green tea.

The reason green tea is so beneficial is because it is high in antioxidants and polyphenols.

Antioxidants are molecules that fight free radicals, which are unstable molecules with unpaired electrons. In order to become more stable, free radicals react with other cells and steal their electrons.

In this process, free radicals cause cell damage and can lead to a variety of diseases such as inflammation, heart disease, cancer, etc. if left unchecked.

Fortunately, antioxidants give electrons to free radicals while also not turning into free radicals themselves and in this process, they stop the chain reaction from causing too much damage.

As we age, free radicals and the resultant oxidative stress significantly increases which contributes to our aging and also makes us much more susceptible to diseases.

To combat this, we need to continually supply our bodies with adequate amounts of antioxidants to stay healthy.

Tea is very high in antioxidants especially in flavonoids, a type of antioxidant.

As such, green tea is also high in flavonoids specifically in catechins and epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which are all powerful antioxidants.

“Whether it’s green or black, tea has about eight to 10 times the polyphenols found in fruits and vegetables.”

Out of all teas, green tea is ranked #2 in the teas with the highest concentration of antioxidants.

Additionally, green tea has been shown to reduce the risk of cancer, heart disease, obesity, diabetes, etc. and this can be seen in countries where green tea consumption is very high.

People in China consume almost 50% of the total green tea consumption in the entire world with Japan ranked #2. 80,000 tons of green tea are consumed in Japan every year.

It’s no wonder that both China & Japan have some of the highest rates of life expectancy in the world. Sure, there are many other factors that contribute to a long life expectancy but green tea is one of them.

Green tea is simply amazing and if you make it a habit to drink it regularly, then it will have amazing health benefits.

Almonds

Almonds are of course part of the tree nut family but what makes almonds stand out from other nuts is its vitamin E concentration. Just one ounce of almonds (about 23 pieces) provides 37% of the RDI of vitamin E.

Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that destroys free radicals and stops cell damage.

Ounce for ounce, almonds are higher in fiber, calcium, vitamin E, and riboflavin than any other tree nut.

Along with being very delicious, almonds have been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease by keeping blood vessels healthy mainly by fighting free radical formation.

I personally soak 7 almonds in the morning so I can peel them at night and eat them.

Now I don’t want you to think that you can only consume almonds. There are other tree nuts out there such as walnuts, cashews, pecans, pistachios, etc. so you can choose which ever one you like.

But if you are not sure which nut you should consume, start with almonds.

Diet

Everyone knows that having an excellent diet is very important to staying healthy but the reason I included it here is to show you which foods you should be regularly eating.

You should regularly be eating fruits, vegetables, whole grains, etc. but everyone knows this.

But if you really want to follow a diet that has been voted the best diet overall for the third year in a row in the U.S. News & World Report annual rankings, then that is the Mediterranean diet.

The Mediterranean diet emphasizes vegetables, fruits, nuts, beans, fish, olive oil, etc. while also including a low intake of meat & dairy.

Here are some statistics to understand why healthy foods are literally healthy for you:

  • Eating nuts 2 or more times per week has been associated with a 17% lower risk of cardiovascular mortality compared to consuming nuts once every 2 weeks.
  • A diet that is rich in fruits and vegetables helps reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, cancer, digestive problems, etc. while also having a positive effect on blood sugar.
  • Rate of death from any sort of cause was up to 18% lower among people with heart disease who ate 2 or more portions of fish each week compared with people who did not.

If you don’t want to follow the Mediterranean diet, that is fine. But make sure you are not regularly consuming fast food, junk food, sweets, cakes, sodas, etc.

It’s okay to have some of this food once in a while but don’t overdue it.

Vitamin D

I put D vitamin instead of vitamin D for the GADDESS principles so it’s easy to roll off the tongue. But here I have listed vitamin D so you know what I am talking about.

Vitamin D has especially gained prominence during the COVID-19 pandemic mainly because research has shown that it may play a role in reducing the severity of COVID-19 and protecting against acute respiratory infections.

For decades, scientists only knew that vitamin D promotes strong and healthy bones by increasing calcium absorption and deposition.

But many years ago, what we knew about vitamin D began to change.

Studies began to came out showing that vitamin D can prevent acute respiratory tract infections and then other studies began to show how vitamin D deficiency was linked to a wide variety of diseases.

Just take a look at some of these:

  • Vitamin D deficiency is a risk factor for heart attacks, strokes, high blood pressure, etc.
  • Higher vitamin D levels have been linked with a lower colorectal cancer risk.
  • People with extremely low levels of vitamin D are more than twice as likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease or dementia compared with people who have normal vitamin D levels.

While these studies don’t really show a direct correlation, the big picture is that vitamin D does more than just build strong bones.

The vitamin D receptor is found in literally all of the cells in the body and so maintaining adequate vitamin D levels can go a long way in ensuring you remain healthy.

Vitamin D is found naturally in very few foods such as fish, liver, and egg. Milk and orange juice are often fortified with vitamin D. The best way to get vitamin D is through the sun which is why it’s often called the “sunshine vitamin.”

By regularly spending time in around midday sun, you can ensure that your body gets the vitamin D it needs.

Exercise

When we started as hunters and gatherers, we didn’t have any fancy apps such as DoorDash to order food nor did we really have transportation to go from one place to the next.

Because of this, we spent a majority of our times hunting for animals and using our legs to walk and run.

Nowadays, in the comfort of our own homes, we can order food and use vehicles to get to various locations.

Because of this, we have become lazy and it’s no wonder why obesity is on the rise.

We need to constantly keep ourselves active to strengthen our bodies. When we use our legs and arms to do activities, we are strengthening them in that process.

Exercise is not only for keeping our bones strong. It also keeps our vital organs such as our brain and heart healthy and functioning.

Exercise helps increase blood flow all around our body which also increases the amount of nutrients and vitamins delivered to our organs.

Some of the benefits of exercise are:

  • Reduces the risk of heart disease, cancer, and diabetes
  • Improves mood and mental health
  • Strengthens our immune system
  • Reduces blood pressure and cholesterol

Not only that, but people who do regular physical activity have been shown to have:

  • a 35% lower risk of coronary heart disease
  • up to an 83% lower risk of osteoarthritis
  • a 30% lower risk of early death
  • up to a 30% lower risk of depression
  • up to a 50% lower risk of type 2 diabetes

If you want to get started with exercise, then you can just simply start walking for 30 minutes every day.

Current guidelines state that you get at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity a week.

Sleep

The only time our bodies get to rest is when we are sleeping.

I mean this should be obvious but a shocking 51% of adults worldwide get less sleep than they need on an average night.

During sleep, our bodies go through a renewal and detoxification process to prepare us for the next day.

The brain stores new information and gets rid of waste. The body repairs cells, restores energy, and releases certain hormones and enzymes to keep everything in balance.

Too many people are compromising on sleep and this always affects us the next day. We can’t focus and become too agitated just because we didn’t get enough hours of sleep.

We need to get at least 7–8 hours of quality sleep to remain healthy.

When I say quality, I mean you need to be sleeping in a sufficiently dark room with a comfortable room temperature with absolutely no noise.

Plus, don’t expect to fall in bed and use your phone for an hour and then go to sleep.

The blue light emitted from our smartphones and tablets blocks a hormone called melatonin whose job is to make us sleepy.

So please don’t compromise on your sleep and make sure you get 7–8 hours of quality sleep.

Stress

This is something that has increased significantly over the past decade and COVID-19 has only made it worse.

Almost 60% of U.S. adults feel daily stress and worry.

Almost one-third of people around the world have reported feeling stressed or worried.

No matter who you are, you have likely felt stress at some point in your life before.

Stress is real and can become damaging real quick.

While some people may feel stress for a short period, there are others who experience chronic stress even when the original stressor goes away.

We all know that stress makes us feel terrible, tired, and agitated.

During chronic stress, the chronic rise in heart rate and blood pressure can damage the blood vessels dramatically increasing the risk of hypertension, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, etc.

When we are stressed, our appetite suffers, our sleep suffers, our exercise suffers, our mood suffers, etc.

Keeping our minds fresh and stress-free can go a long way in ensuring that we remain healthy and can live life to its fullest.

Some good ways to deal with stress are to:

  • Make a habit to meditate
  • Talk with family and friends
  • Don’t stress too much about work

Takeaways

I came up with the GADDESS principles as a way to constantly be checking yourself if you are staying healthy and are following good practices.

You don’t really have to consume green tea or almonds to stay healthy but just make sure your vitamin D, diet, exercise, sleep, and stress are well taken care of.

If you don’t want to consume green tea, there are so many other teas available but green tea does rank as one of the highest teas in terms of antioxidant concentration.

All tree nuts are incredibly nutritious and healthy for the body so you can choose any other tree nut such as pistachios or walnuts if you don’t want to eat almonds.

Better yet, you can mix and even eat 2 or 3 different types of nuts.

Now, what I want you as the reader to do is to take a good look at yourself and evaluate how healthy you have been living.

Use the GADDESS principles to get right back on track to live a more healthy and fulfilling life, every day.

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Samir S.

Samir S.

Writing to Inform, Educate, & Teach | Obsessed with Health & Wellness | https://samir-s.medium.com/subscribe