Water

As we continue our discussion of healthy living, it’s very important to focus on drinking water.

At the most basic level, drink more water.

When I was at West Point, the number one thing were told was “drink water new cadet!” And that saying has served me well throughout my life.

In terms of your health, one of the easiest habit changes to focus on is water consumption. Simply start by waking up and having a glass of room temperature water with squeezed lemon juice. The concept of consuming temperate water when waking is embraced by Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine. In both cases, this first glass of water helps stimulate the villi in your intestine to help move cellular debris and other waste out of your body.

But water has lots of other benefits to include hydration, clear skin, boosting immunity, and helping your kidneys. To learn more, check out 10 Reasons Why You Should Drink More Water

The other thing that is very important to consider is the quality of the water you drink. While a lot of people love their tap water, they need to be cautious about the added chemicals like chlorine and fluoride that are normally added to municipalities.

Right now, I am drinking filtered water through a refrigerator, but ideally you would drink a more alkaline water to help reduce the acidity of your body.

I am currently shopping for a new in home system – either an Apex Water Filtration System or something more like a Berkey. I think the Apex is more convenient but it’s also a bit more of a burden to install. I’ll let you know what I decided once I hear back from a friend.

Okay, so for today, lets focus on drinking a glass of water when we wake up. Then at least one glass with each meal and ideally a total of about 10 glass or 2.5-3 liters per day.

I’ll leave you with a few quick videos from last night’s meal prep.

How to get started

One of the biggest problems people face when making life changes, is the simple act of getting started.

Often the beginning of any new diet, exercise program, meditation or other habitual change can be a daunting task.

Most of us have said to ourselves, I’ll start on Monday, the first of the month, or of course, after New Years.

It really doesn’t matter when you start, just start. And if you say Monday, and you don’t get started until Wednesday, then be kind to yourself and just congratulate yourself when you do get started.

The other big problem for most people is how to get started. You don’t want to be so drastic that your new program is unattainable. In my experience, it’s always easier to smart small and build upon your initial success.

How we eat is probably the most important overall factor in our health and longevity. We’ve all heard the saying “you are what you eat.” There is a lot of truth in this statement and in fact, if you can find a diet and lifestyle that gives you more energy and focus while providing the right levels of micro and macro nutrients then the overall benefits are remarkable.

Today, there are a lot of different types of dietary lifestyles with people embracing intermittent fasting, ketogenic diets, and vegan or plant based diets.

Whatever diet you want to try – start and see what works.

Personally, during my current journey I am going to combine intermittent fasting with a vegetarian based diet. My vegetarian diet will be mostly vegan with the elimination of dairy and animal protein from 4 legged animals and birds, however I will still be eating fish. (And for those of you who have been following Greensbury, don’t worry, I will still be cooking delicious organic meats and sustainable seafood for my wife and kids).

I am targeting about 80% green leafy vegetables and 20% legumes, seeds, fruits, and fish. Additionally, I am following an Ayurvedic programs that incorporates fasting by targeting 1-2 meals a day. The first meal window is 9-10am and the second meal window is 12-2pm with no food after 6pm. In fact, I will try not to eat after the lunch meal which is the primary meal of the day.

To start my transition, I am actually using a program called Prolon. The Prolon program is a fasting mimicking diet that is vegan based. It comes in a box with all five days of the meals included in individual packaging with a simple guide of what to eat when. It’s super easy and the food is pretty tasty consisting of nut bars, soups, kale crackers and olives. I’ve only used it once before but I felt amazing and lost about 12 lbs in the first week. I am on day 2 and I have already shed 4 lbs.

This transitional program allows me to not have to think about what to eat when I get started. Then as I transition back to regular food, my system is already primed for the new lifestyle.

Another easy way to get started is an elimination diet. Make a list of things that you need to cut back on and then simply start eliminating them from what you eat. You can do this with gluten, dairy, red meat, etc.

I know that a lot of people think about eliminating carbohydrates is the key to weight loss and healthy living, but that is simply not the case. I think a lot of people confuse gluten with carbohydrates. Gluten in general is a very inflammatory food, whereas carbohydrates can be very beneficial. The consumption of sweet potatoes, legumes, seeds, quinoa, millet, long grain rice and fruits actually provide critical nutrients that our bodies need for energy. While you might think that protein is what your body and brain need the most, it is in fact carbohydrates. And when you eat protein your body simply converts the protein into carbohydrates.

Whatever diet you do pursue – please cut out sugar. Sugar is the most destructive additive to our systems. Did you know that cancer feeds off of sugar. Refined sugar is bad – plain and simply. This doesn’t mean that all fruit is bad because it has sugar. In fact, small servings of fruit can be very beneficial due to the nutrients and the energy your body gets from the fruit. I’d recommended lots of berries, red grapes, cherries, apples, kiwi, guava, mango, papaya and pineapple. However, according to Ayurvedic guidelines you should not mix fruit with the rest of your meal. In fact, have your fruit 90 minutes before or 2 hours after your other food. The only exceptions are avocados, olives and coconut. For me, this means that fruit will be the primary food at the breakfast meal without any other vegetables or protein. You can mix the fruit with coconut yogurt and you can chop in some cilantro to help detox. Cilantro is one of the best naturally chelation foods and can help remove heavy metals and other toxins.

That’s a lot for today, so think about it and then lets do the work today.

Day 1 – New Beginnings

Most people have had a lot of time to think and reflect during Covid-19 about their lives. In fact, one might argue that we’ve had too much time to evaluate our family, our job, where we live and ultimately what’s important in life.

I know for me that this period has been an amazing experience to spend more time with my family, focusing on quality time with my wife and kids. I really want to concentrate on the people and things that actually matter.

But at the same time, I have had plenty of time to eat, sleep, do pilates via Facetime, Yoga via Zoom and the occasional Peloton ride. I have also watched and read more than I ever would have during “normal” life. One of the things that has been of particular interest, is how I eat, meditate and practice self-care. I am very intrigued by Game Changers. This documentary essentially makes the case for a vegetarian based diet and the overall benefits for health and performance. The information very much aligns with a concept known as Food as Medicine which is the basis of Ayurvedic medicine. It also is very similar to concepts by a dear friend, Andrew Sterman who has recently published two books about Food for Energy and Healing.

For most of us, change and transformation is hard.

Therefore, we can’t look at drastic changes. We need to think about where we want to be in 5 years and then slowly make the changes to accomplish those goals. It’s a journey.

The purpose of this blog is to essentially help me and anyone that is interested in joining my journey to have information and tools to make changes to better our overall quality of life.

And really to live a full happy and healthy life.

To that end, the goal is not to do it all at once, but to Do The Work Today so that ultimately we can all arrive where we want to be.

I hope this site will help.