Today I am thankful for my health.
Yes, my stomach hates me as always. Yes, I have spent the past week semi-successfully fighting the cold that Eric and all of my students have. But in the grand scheme of things, these little problems are actually very, very small. Considering the number of germs I must be exposed to on a daily basis, my immune system does a pretty good job... and that's only on the little germs- colds, flus etc. God only knows what things I do that I don't even KNOW about that cause terrible long term illnesses. Oh sure, I obviously don't smoke, I eat healthy etc, but it seems like SO much causes cancer these days I can't even keep track of it all, let alone actually avoid all of these things. It can be overwhelming at times.
It's so overwhelming actually that I've spent the vast majority of my adult life ignoring most of the claims. I've done everything I need to to stay healthy in the short term. I eat healthy food because my stomach will immediately punish me if I do not. I exercise because my stomach and my mind will immediately punish me if I do not. I wash my hands because I will immediately get a cold if I do not. I get plenty of sleep because I will immediately get a cold/lose my mind if I do not. Fortunately for me, a lot of these "short term" solutions will also help me in the long term. But what about things that do not affect me in the short term? Especially claims that maybe are not 100% proven but certainly could be true?
I'm talking about things like taking a daily multi vitamin (which I used to not do because it immediately made my stomach feel terrible), avoiding BPA plastics, using aluminum free deodorant, limiting time with a cell phone attached to my head and along this same lines avoiding unnecessary XRays at places like the airport. This is the stuff I am not as good at. The funny thing is, if I had immediate stomach pain right after putting on deodorant, we wouldn't even be having this conversation, I would've given it up years ago.
Finally, at the old age of 27 I have decided it's time to get more serious about some of the long term health stuff. Recently, I've made some big changes that I hope will be better for me in the long term.
1. I've started taking a daily Multivitamin and Omega-3 supplements. As I mentioned earlier, I have not had good luck with Multivitamins, but I finally decided to splurge on a brand called Rainbow Light. Rainbow Light actually puts some natural stomach-helpers like ginger into their vitamins which helps me to avoid any pain or discomfort after taking them. I have been taking Rainbow Light Calcium/Magnesium pills for awhile with success and the transition to the Multivitamin has been very smooth. I've even been able to handle the version with Iron (not pictured above) because my last blood test revealed I was a little low in iron. Finally, I've had success recently taking one of the pills (it's 3 per day) in the early morning which is something I could never do even long before my stomach issues. If only I could somehow receive an insane discount on these ridiculously priced Vitamins, I would be singing my praises from the roof tops. Hmm, maybe they should give me free vitamins to sing their praises from the roof tops?
2. I have 100% given up deodorant with aluminum in it. Starting about a year ago I began using some of the natural deodorants on days when I knew I'd be home most of the time or at least not in a place where I was likely to sweat. I just feared that they would not work as well. Guess what? I've fully switched over and so far I haven't had any smelling problems... at least that I know about :) The only thing I haven't tried yet is hot yoga, we shall see how that goes!
On my agenda next in tackling my water cooler. You know the office water colorer? Eric and I actually have one of those at home because we like bottled water and don't like buying a million plastic bottles. It's cheaper and easier. My mom has been on me about how this is in fact NOT a good idea because the water bottles are probably filled with BPA (even though they claim they are not) and BPA is absolutely terrible for you. As always, I know she is right so I finally found a local company that will deliver in glass bottles. I'm sure it will be more expensive but I like that it's a family business so I'm willing to pay a little extra. I told Eric today that I am making it my mission of the week to set up this new company so, I'll keep you posted!
It's also probably possible to go broke on health... but then again what's the point of saving money if I don't make it to 30? Something to think about!
What are some things you do for your long term health?